Iceland’s capital city Reykjavik is one of Europe’s modern gastronomic destinations. Foodies of all ages will be impressed with how far its food scene has come. There are traditional Icelandic restaurants to fine dining in hotels to hot dog stands to ice cream shops. Here’s a list of where to eat on your next trip to Reykjavik and beyond in South Iceland:
Reyjakavik offers many options for foodies and if you know where to go or do your research or get recommendations from locals, you’ll be more likely to get scrumptious Icelandic fare.
Matur og Drykkur is in a 90-year old building where they used to process salt but now houses the Saga Museum and Northern Lights Museum. Its chef hails from Brooklyn and he prepares Icelandic delicacies like fried cod croquettes, smoked salmon with char, mussels, baked root vegetables and pearl barley, Icelandic leg of lamb and salted cod. Dessert includes Kleina, twisted doughnuts with cardamom sugar and caramelized whey. The tastes are delectable and so delicious.
Matur og Drykkur, Grandagardour 2, Reykjavík, +354 571 8877
At another popular restaurant, Grillmarkaðurinn, you’ll get Icelandic farm fare like brown bread with lava salt, lamb, beef, trout, quail, whale, lobster, skyr and honey. Chefs Hrefna Rosa Soetren and Gudiaugur P. Frimannsson are inspired by Iceland’s natural elements of rock, water and wood and use locally sourced ingredients.
Grillmarkaðurinn, Laekjargata 2A, Reykjavik, +354 571 7777
Grab a traditional langoustine sandwich or fresh fish for lunch at Hotel Keflavik near the waterfront. Dinner options include Icelandic fare such as smoked trout, fish cakes, lamb dijon, pan seared cod and creamy fish soup. Chef Jenny Runarsdottir puts emphasis on using fresh ingredients in all their dishes.
Hotel Keflavik, Vatnsnesvegur, Keflavik, +354 420 7000
Kids will love homemade scoops of ice-cream at Valdis on Reyjakavik’s waterfront.
Valdis, Grandagarður, Reykjavík, +354 586 8088
While traveling through South Iceland, stop at the upscale Hotel Ranga near Hella where they serve up excellent meat, fish and vegetarian dishes. The menu is inspired by modern Nordic cuisine with a Mediterranean twist.
Hotel Ranga, Suorlandsvegur, 851 Hella, +354 487 5700
Hendur Hofn Kaffihus in Þorlákshöfn serves lovely meze, soup and gluten-free dishes, and a fabulous, personable owner and host. After dining, discover the owner’s beautiful glass work and take some of it home.
Hendur Hofn Kaffihus, 815 Porlakshofn, +354 848 3389
The Northern Light Inn near the airport also prepares fresh fish dishes, free range lamb, smoked salmon, and home-baked breads and cakes at its own Max’s Restaurant.
The Northern Light Inn, Norourljosavegur, +354 426 8650
Disclosure: Holly was in Iceland as a guest of the Icelandic Tourist Board but all opinions are her own.