From Iceland — HabiBi


Published April 13, 2007


When it comes to fast-food, the Grapevine staff has dined at almost every single joint located in the city centre so we’d like to think that we have gathered a certain expertise in the matter by now. We need our snacks to be cheap, tasty and quick to grab but unfortunately these demanding requirements have left us with few options.
After months of eating pizzas, burgers and sandwiches for lunch the overload of bread, pepperoni and mayo has become rather tiresome. That is why discovering the newly established HabiBi at Hafnarstræti was a delightful treat for us all. Specialising in authentic Arabic traditional food, HabiBi serves delicious shawarmas, kebab-sticks and falafels to an expanding number of hungry downtown strollers from lunch to late dinner hours.
HabiBi, which translates as ‘my beloved,’ is a welcome addition to the downtown quick-meal spots. It’s fairly cheap, nice and clean and even plays Arabic music videos on a large TV on the wall to spice up the atmosphere. The dining space only counts a couple of seats facing the wall and window for those who choose to eat on the spot but the take-away bags come in handy for those on the run. An even bigger bonus, HabiBi is open until six in the morning on Fridays and Saturdays, preparing hot juicy meals for all the late night out crowd in desperate need of energy.
By now, we at the Grapevine have tried most of the dishes listed on the short and simple menu and we like every bite. Whether it’s the rich plate of kebab sticks with hummus, salad and purple onion yoghurt cheese sauce or the marinated chicken shawarma served with salad, cucumbers, sweet corn, cheese and the special purple onion sauce, the dishes, costing less than 1000 ISK each, including drinks, never fail to satisfy. The shawarma chicken tortilla sandwich is perfect to grab if you’re in a hurry, as is the falafel sandwich, which comes highly recommended. Wrapped in warm flour tortilla and generously stuffed with flavourful deep-fried falafel balls, vegetables, chilli and yoghurt sauce it only costs 700 ISK with a can of soda, making it my favourite at the moment. I can even guarantee that all you harder-than-hell-to-please folks out there are going to love it.

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