The year 2019 wasn’t kind to many restaurateurs. Let’s be honest, it’s a tough business. Nevertheless, Iceland’s culinary scene is seeing the emergence of new players and the old guard stepping up their A-game. Restaurants continue to diversify; we’ve got ourselves an izakaya inspired spot, while tasting menus are being questioned and reinterpreted. The scope of “Icelandic cuisine” is broadening to include not just produce and products but also their sourcing and seasonal integrity on this harsh island by players big and small. Whether it is globally recognised Nordic fine-dining or fragrant Thai curries, traditional Icelandic cuisine or family-friendly sushi, to everything in-between, this guide to the best of everything Reykjavík has to offer has been hand-picked by our exacting panel of passionate gourmands. From budget bites to fanciful fare, we’ve got you covered. Skál!
Best Late-Night Bite
We might as well just call this “The Mandi category.” Whether it’s their full-flavoured meats, their extensive vegan options or their idiosyncratic social media messages, this Syrian kebab place stole Reykjavík’s heart. Crispy falafels, lamb shawarmas, teeny desserts, or a pack of ciggies; Mandi’s got you. If there’s any doubt that these gentlemen were destined for true kebab greatness, consider that one of them is called Hlal!
Even bad pizza is good pizza and Devitos is better than bad, it’s good. Another staple of the Icelandic late nite bites for over 25 years, this place is sure to sort you out at the end of a long shift at the hotel or a long line at the bar bathroom. Now stop your yapping and grab a slice with pepperoni, pineapple, and cream cheese like a real native.
It’s a well-known fact that a rib-sticking combo of fat and carbs will help slow the absorption of alcohol in the body. As if that wasn’t enough, a 2010 report stated that “l-cysteine can be used to decrease acetaldehyde concentration in the achlorhydric stomach during alcohol exposure.” In layman’s terms: 1,200 ISK chicken döner kebab is anti-booze medicine.
2016: Ali Baba
2015: Fish and Chips
You can buy a copy of the full Best Of Reykjavík 2020 magazine—an essential guide to having fun in Reykjavík—here, posted worldwide.
Buy subscriptions, t-shirts and more from our shop right here!