8 Of The Best Restaurants In Reykjavík For Foodie Travelers

Reykjavík has become quite the underrated foodie destination.

Iceland has not always had the most renowned reputation for its cuisine full of dried and fermented dishes. Traditional Icelandic food was a result of a lack of resources and a need to preserve food throughout long winters when produce didn’t grow and it was too cold to do a lot of hunting or fishing. Today, however, science has progressed to allow fresh fruit and vegetables to grow in the country all year long. Reykjavík now features a wide range of dining experiences from fancy to casual, with cuisine from all around the world. For a firsthand look at how the city’s food scene has blossomed, check out these eight tasty restaurants in Reykjavík that are perfect for foodie travelers.

Matur og Drykkur

Grandagarður 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

The seasonal tasting menu at Matur og Drykkur
The seasonal tasting menu at Matur og Drykkur. Photo by maturogdrykkur on Instagram

Named after a well-known Icelandic cookbook, Matur og Drykkur (food and drink) is a family-owned restaurant serving traditional recipes prepared with contemporary methods. It’s located inside of an old salt fish factory from 1924, with the food of a fine dining establishment but the casual atmosphere of a pub. Try the seasonal 6-course meal for flavors of Iceland from pickled lingonberry to skyr paired with fried fish. Make reservations if you’re going for dinner, as Matur og Drykkur fills up fast.

Matarkjallarinn

Aðalstræti 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

Ribeye with veggies and a twice baked potato
Ribeye with veggies and a twice baked potato. Photo by slipproof on Instagram

Brasserie-style cuisine is served in this centrally located “food cellar” aptly named Matarkjallarinn. Grab a cocktail at the bar before settling down to order from the set menu, or build your own multi-course meal à la carte. The restaurant’s historic 160 year old building is a suitable setting for its 1880 Viennese grand piano used for live performances on the weekends. Matarkjallarinn is the place to go for understated classy vibes and a distinctly Icelandic experience, so don’t miss out while you’re in town.

Fiskmarkaðurinn

Aðalstræti 12, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

Fiskmarkaðurinn’s sushi platter
Fiskmarkaðurinn’s sushi platter. Photo by fiskmarkadurinn on Instagram

Fiskmarkaðurinn, or “the fish market,” opened in 2007 as an Icelandic and East Asian fusion restaurant serving fresh seafood prepared with locally grown ingredients. The establishment spans 2 floors in one of the oldest buildings in Reykjavík, featuring an open kitchen with the only robata grill in Iceland and a highly acclaimed sushi bar. There are plenty of meat and vegetarian options if you’re not a fan of fish, as well as cocktails and craft beer if you want a drink.

Grillmarkaðurinn

Lækjargata 2a, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

A romantic alcove in Grillmarkaðurinn
A romantic alcove in Grillmarkaðurinn. Photo by grillmarkadurinn on Instagram

Grillmarkaðurinn is a meat lovers paradise and one of the most popular restaurants in the city. Dishes include a large selection of meat from reindeer to puffin, coming directly from farmers in Iceland. Everything from the dishes to the decor pays homage to the Icelandic countryside, featuring spotted wolffish skin and basalt throughout the dining room. While the menu is meat focused, Grillmarkaðurinn has something for everyone with vegetarian options as well.

ÓX

Laugavegur 28, 101, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

Top restaurants in Reykjavík
INSTAGRAM @ox.reykjavik

A certified hidden gem of downtown Reykjavík, ÓX is a restaurant within a restaurant, boasting a mysterious culinary adventure that allows you to taste your way through Iceland. Perhaps the most exclusive establishment in Reykjavík, ÓX has a single table with 11 seats wrapping around an open kitchen where the chef prepares the 12 courses of the night. This once in a lifetime dining experience includes simple yet sophisticated food presentations and an ever-changing menu with drink pairings for each course.

Café Loki

Lokastígur 28, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

You get a great view of Hallgrimskirkja from Café Loki
You get a great view of Hallgrimskirkja from Café Loki. Photo by clickinglack on Instagram

Across the street from Hallgrimskirkja is Café Loki, an authentic Icelandic restaurant with a cozy atmosphere. Here, you can find home-style recipes that have been passed down for generations including plokkfiskur fish stew and rye bread ice cream. Small dishes allow you to try a variety of things, perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Café Loki is also a great place to sample Iceland’s famous fermented shark (served with a shot of Brennivin) if you’re feeling adventurous.

Dill Restaurant

Laugavegur 59, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

The classy interior of Dill Restaurant
The classy interior of Dill Restaurant. Photo by dillrestaurant on Instagram

Dill Restaurant opened in 2009, serving “New Nordic cuisine” using natural ingredients in authentic and inventive ways. With modern industrial decor and a 7-course seasonal menu with wines to match, it’s no wonder Dill is the first and only restaurant in Iceland to receive a Michelin star. Don’t pass up this fine dining experience in the northernmost capital of the world.

Út í bláinn (Perlan Restaurant)

Varmahlíð 1, 105 Reykjavík, Iceland

The breathtaking view from Út í bláinn
The breathtaking view from Út í bláinn. Photo by tiffmediana on Instagram

Sitting atop Reykjavik’s hot water tanks is a bistro-style restaurant and bar housed in an impressive glass dome. Út í bláinn serves modern Icelandic fare amidst a breathtaking view of Iceland. The restaurant’s name translates to “into the blue,” referencing its 360-degree views of the ocean and sky as you sit in the revolving restaurant. The building also holds a planetarium if you fancy an educational nightcap.

Meghan St. Pierre

Content Editor Associate

Meghan is a native of South Florida who loves nature and landscape photography. Her favorite travel activities are getting lost in new cities and trying local desserts. She has been to 22 countries, and her favorites have been Sweden and Denmark so far.

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