Iceland is a trendy vacation destination lately either as a stopover en route to Europe, or all on its own. This remote land is filled with gorgeous people, stark landscapes, and interesting food. It is home to the most popular hot dog stand on the planet, as well as restaurants that still serve whale sashimi.
If you’re willing to take your tastebuds on a tour, here’s what you need to eat in Iceland.
You can have it as sashimi, or as a steak. Whaling in Iceland still occurs in objection to a 1996 moratorium. You will find whale on some Reykjavik restaurant menus. You will most likely be served minke whale, which has a very fishy taste and is largely consumed by tourists.
Putrified shark. There are no words to describe this other than to say it’s an acquired taste that few have acquired. It once made Gordon Ramsay actually vomit, and Anthony Bourdain has called it “the single worst, most disgusting and terrible tasting thing” he has ever eaten. I’m almost disappointed I didn’t try it at the restaurant near Gullfoss.
This high octane alcohol smells as if it was fermented in a barrel with cedar branches. It’s a raw moonshine that causes many to ‘see god’ after they have a shot of ‘the black death.‘
Greek yogurt has taken off as a trendy treat around the world, and you might expect to see this Icelandic version follow in the footsteps. It’s a thick, creamy yogurt that appears on every breakfast table.
Icelanders are very proud of their lamb. The sheep are everywhere there is a meadow. They wander and graze in a free range style that gives the meat a much more gamier taste. It’s wonderful.
They are darn cute, those fat little birds, but they’re also darn good. Think of ostrich, or duck, and you’ll be on the right track for this red meat fowl.
How did hot dogs, or pylsur, become such a big deal in Iceland? Who knows. Easily the most popular restaurant in the country is a red hot dog shack on Reykjavik’s waterfront, and they were also found at even the most remote outpost in Grundarfjörður. The Icelandic dogs are deep fried, and served with sweet mustard and crispy onions.