From Iceland — Q Bar

Q Bar

Published August 10, 2007

Q Bar

“Straight friendly” Q Bar is located in the middle of 101 Reykjavík. It has, in the six or so months since it took on its incarnation as a gay bar, gained a reputation as a fun place to partake in casual drinking and late nights out. Not content with catering solely to Reykjavík’s queer drinker contingent, the bar recently introduced a menu of modern bar food; soups, salads, Tapas and wraps may now be enjoyed there for a reasonable price. The Grapevine investigated.

Arriving early Thursday evening, it soon became clear that those meaning to enjoy the newfangled menu at Q Bar must make the important distinction that it isn’t a restaurant, so much as a bar that offers food. The name and cheap-ish pricing policy indicate as much. We adapted to the different service standards a bar will offer and thus weren’t particularly concerned by having to wait fifteen minutes before any of the staff noted our presence. The tango course being taught in front of our table may have contributed to this, but also contributed to the quality of our evening, as it was entertaining to watch.

We were in for a treat when they did. Perusing the menu while sipping on impressive Strawberry Mojitos, we had difficulties deciding which of the tempting Tapas to order (prices ranging from 590 to 990 ISK) and whether to get Falafel wraps or perhaps some Indian chicken ones (1,190 ISK for both). We wound up ordering way too much food for two relatively sane persons to handle in a single sitting.

The Tapas were satisfactory. Shrimp served in a typical Thai chilli dipping sauce lived up to its name, as did the marinated salmon and Chicken Satay sticks (the addition of nuts proved essential here). The breaded, deep-fried lobster was as tender as one would expect, although the unimaginative use of the same chilli sauce was a drawback. The Tapas menu is a good choice when starting off an evening with drinks; the price and size of the servings befitting the late afternoon/early evening snacking so prevalent in today’s hectic, borderline-alcoholic lifestyles.

As for the main courses, we found our fruity chicken salad to be a tasty concoction, even though the bits of chicken were dry at times. Falafel wraps and accompanying hummus dip were also to be reckoned with, and went down well with glasses of Q Bar’s surprisingly good house wine. We will surely be eating at Q Bar again. HM

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