wow. iceland has perfected the restaurant game between its immense variety and its quaint and unique ambiances to pair. not to mention the staff, and icelandic people in general, are welcoming, friendly, and have the utmost respect for their costumers.
so here we go. get ready for a photo dump because the motto of the trip was #phoneeatsfirst.
breakfast at sandholt//reykjavik
my order: fried eggs with mixed greens and toast + coffee
verdict: perfect meal to start the trip. this was our first taste of icelandic bread, which proved to be absolutely incredible throughout the country and trip. the dressing on the salad was very tasty despite it not being a “typical” american breakfast item. but the best of all were the homemade cinnamon roll and crossaint we finished the meal with.
lunch at efstidalur ii dairy farm and restaurant//golden circle route
the building was two levels. the bottom floor was the cafe and ice cream shop, and the top floor was the lunch and dinner restaurant. both had a large window connecting the barn of cows to the seating areas. all the beef and dairy comes from cows costumers can see from their table. (cool or gross- your call!)
my order: being slightly disturbed by the cows just feet away from and in the mood to try something different, i ordered the veggie burger.
verdict: incredible. i had my expectations low for a place that specialized in beef, but the seasoning and freshness of the burger were amazing. i also has a bite of the beef burger, which was everything you expect from the freshest possible beef.
ice cream: the little tasting i had (lactose intolerant on dairy farm is not a super fun combination) was great.
overall, a must stop for anyone on the golden circle route.
dinner at stofan cafe// reykjavík
after two amazing meals, a chocolate crepe was all i needed to finish my day, a very acceptable move on any vacation.
my order: banana chocolate crepe
verdict: delicious and very heavy on the chocolate, light on the banana. also very large and is better suited for two people to share.
breakfast at early in the morning//reykjavík (which doubles as port 9 wine bar in the evenings)
this place had only a few options for breakfast, but they all seemed incredible. eggs and sausage, avocado toast, pancakes, salmon and scrambled eggs were some of the options. all meals were served with fresh fruit, coffee, yogurt and granola, and bread.
my order: avocado toast with a fried egg
verdict: so good. i’m used to avocado toast but this was special. they top theirs with fresh arugula, tomatoes, and feta cheese. yum! this place had my favorite decor by far.
lunch stop during our south coast drive at gamla fjosid (old cowhouse)//eyjafjalla-jokull surrounding area
my order: house salad (not pictured)… which was a pleasant surprise. it came with a unique variety of toppings including orange melon on a thinly cut bed of cabbage and lettuce.
verdict: another killer burger spot. similar to our other lunch, the cows are raised on the property and this high level of freshness is evident in their burgers.
dinner at sudur vik//vik
my favorite meal of the trip. in this extremely small southern town, we didn’t have many expectations for outstanding food. however, this adorable house sitting at one of the highest points in vik blew us away. the upstairs dining setting provided great views and the variety of food was overwhelming in the best way.
my order: panang curry. unbelievable!! this dish was very spicy (how i like it) and my favorite curry to date. plus dairy and gluten free carrot cake to finish the night!
verdict: their pizzas are a must get. the pizzas reminded me of neapolitan style wood oven pizzas with fresh toppings. very good.
we had a full day of road tripping, so meals were mostly snacks and pastries – nothing too glamorous except for….
dinner at svartifoss//reykjavik
at this point in the trip we were looking for a restaurant open late and some familiar comfort food, like pizza!
my order: pizza! with red peppers, mushrooms, pepperoni, and ham.
verdict: the perfect pizza spot! every table had a special pre-made olive oil with garlic and parmesan and another with crushed red pepper. these little details are what elevated the taste on the already delicious pizzas.
breakfast at kaffivagnin//reykjavik
my order: traditional eggs and bacon breakfast.
verdict: the food here wasn’t anything to die for, but the views were! the windows look out onto the marina. there is even an outside porch for nice days.
lunch at cooco’s nest///reykjavik
my order: vegan sandwich with sweet potato, roasted red peppers, spinach, eggplant, and almond spread. best sandwich of my life! the chef also prepares a homemade hot sauce daily with any spare ingredients, which completely perfected the already delicious meal.
verdict: the soup of the day (sweet potato and onion topped with kale) was also incredible. a must hit spot for anyone in the city.
dinner at salt//reykjavik
my order: house salad and grilled vegetables.
verdict: the menu felt very limited to pricey seafood, which is great if that’s what you’re looking for! definitely a good spot for fish and chips.
i decided to document so many of my meals to inspire some of the meals i hope to create in my own kitchen this year. stay tuned on whether or not i can stir up a mini icelandic feast in my house.
in the meantime, here are a few other treats (including more crepes and dairy free ice cream!) if you aren’t sick of the food pics.