Jono Duffy is Iceland’s premier gay Australian comedian—the only one actually. Here’s his perfect Reykjavík day.
I used to live in Melbourne, which is the breakfast/brunch capital of the world, so this question puts me in a bit of a “Meryl Streep in ‘Sophie’s Choice’” situation. Reykjavík is only now getting restaurants with decent breakfasts, which is laudable. It may shock people, but not all Australians are laid back surfer types—when it comes to breakfast we are quite demanding and spoiled. You might be surprised to know that we can easily distinguish between eggs Hemingway and Florentine— it’s not only something we’re good at; it kind of makes us like “your worst mother-in-law.” All that being said, my favourite breakfast place is Rosenberg. The food, the atmosphere, the coffee—it all works.
I love people-watching at Hallgrímskirkja. There’s something strangely intoxicating about observing a family of five from Texas argue over who had their eyes closed in the picture they just took as they hold up traffic by standing in the middle of the road to check the LCD screen on the camera. It makes me feel so alive.
Definitely Public House. Order a beer, get the “not Pizza” and satiate your cravings with the exact amount of every flavour you want happening at the same time. I like to go to the Sushi Train as well. It’s like Tinder in real life. Everything that’s perfectly fine dashes before your eyes, but you decide to wait to see if something better comes along, and it never does.
Midday is normally reserved for meetings where I “holla for a dollar.” Chances are, if you see me having a coffee with someone in a bar downtown at this time, I’m trying to charm the pants off them so they pay my night rate for stand-up at their sister’s 40th birthday party. The conversation might go something like this:
“Yes, that may sound expensive but how many other gay Australian comedians in Iceland have you come across who were the creative director for the national Eurovision entry and have done two TED Talks?”
Their response is always…
If it was my birthday, I would go to Apotek. It’s one of those “special places” that’s great for that one night when you want to ‘“treat yo’self.” If I’m being completely honest though, on a regular night, I’d go to Mandi. I love shawarma and they have the best hummus in town. I’ve racked up enough frequent flyer miles there that they know exactly who I am and what I want when I walk in.
Heat of the night?
This depends. It might be a stand-up show at Gaukurinn, Húrra, or Græna Herbergið, or Drag-Súgur for my monthly dose of realness. After sashaying away, I would burn up the dance floor at Kiki, then finish my night at Lebowski bar. Cut to 03:00, you will probably find me lining up for a slice of pizza at the Deli, waiting for a cab on Lækjagata, or admiring the headphones at 10/11 because, as much as I pretend I’m a different kind of drunk because I came from another country, I’m still a child with no spatial awareness.
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