Reykjavik is great place for a three day weekend or a handy stopover on the way to North America. Icelandair and easyJet have regular flights, but give WOW a go – it’s a decent low-cost airline that’ll whisk you to Reykjavik from Gatwick en route to Whistler and/or Coachella.
At the Marina Hotel. This place is right on the harbour, rather than the tourist-filled centre of town), with a relaxed, quietly cool vibe. If you’re on a budget (it is February, after all), go for the Kex Hostel on the waterfront, which reminds us a bit of E8 thanks to its old biscuit factory heritage. It also has a great lobby-bar-restaurant-lounge serving superb food and too-nice wine.
A Chervil Negroni at Slippbarrin, the bar-restaurant-art space that doubles as the Marina Hotel’s lobby. This was easily the best place in town for cocktails and chocolate cake – definitely as good as anything you’d find in London (and that’s saying a lot). For a great espresso or latte, head to Reykjavik Roasters for some Melbourne cafe vibes. And do try a local beer – the economy here has bounced back big time since 2008, but every little still helps.
Where do we start? A massive plate of super juicy langoustines at Fiskmarkadurrin is half the price you’d pay in London, while a not-bad burger can be had at Burger Joint (aka Hamborgara Bullan), which is the sister space to Tommi’s in Marylebone. Icelandic Fish & Chips is a bit of a tourist must-do, but never mind that and check your cool at the counter for some guilt-free, sustainable cod in a cracking batter.Dill is probably the best restaurant in town, and serves up a world-class set dinner. The ‘IceScandic’ menu is a little bit Noma/New Nordic and if you’re a fan of Story, Clove Club, Craft, Typing Room and Paradise Garage, you’ll feel right at home here under the vaulted ceiling of what feels like an old farmhouse. Just remember, no smiling: this is serious cooking. Be sure to try an Icelandic banana because they grow them here in giant, glow-in-the-dark, geothermic greenhouses. And of course, have THAT chocolate cake at Slippbarrin.
Puffin (it tastes like a mermaid’s lung), whale (far too cute to eat), torrfisk (strange, dried flaky fish bits/scabs) or the local favourite fennel/liquorice chocolate which seems to be everywhere.