*This tour was paid for by me and is not a collaboration
A food tour in Reykjavik Iceland!
I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite things to do when I’m in a new city is to try the local food. I will sometimes research some recommended restaurants and try to make some reservations but this is quite time-consuming.
Finally, I figured out that joining a food tour was a much better use of my time and a more cost-effective way to try local dishes. Plus, I have the expertise of a local guide, so I know I’m headed to some great places. I just need to show up and they lead the way.
Being a solo traveler, I also like the idea of being able to share something I love (food) with others who are also visiting a new place. It can be lonely sometimes traveling solo and it’s great to share a meal and swap some travel stories too.
I like to book a food tour at the beginning of my trip for a few reasons:
- If we visit a place I love, I can return to it on another day of my trip
- I don’t know anyone and if I meet some people and hit it off we may end up hanging out later on.
- I usually get some great trips on other places to see in the city from fellow tour participants.
- Usually, I take a food tour the day or night I arrive. This forces me to get out and do something instead of falling asleep early from jet lag.
The food tour
I chose to take a tour with Wake Up Reykjavík: The Reykjavík Food Walk in Iceland. This is a popular tour in Reykjavik, so you will need to book ahead online to secure a spot. I picked the 17:00 time slot as I knew this would also cover my dinner! Come hungry, you will eat a lot.
About 10 people arrived at the agreed-upon meeting place to meet our guide, Agnes. Agnes was enthusiastic about Iceland and its food and shared a lot of Icelandic history with us. The emphasis of this tour is on the food so you won’t get a history lesson but you have plenty of chances to ask questions.
The first stop was at Messinn, a wonderful restaurant with an emphasis on fish. We tried arctic char with honey and almonds and fish stew – (cod, potatoes, onions, butter, cream, garlic, celery, white wine, and lime ). Both dishes were delicious and the presentation was breathtaking. The meal was served family-style so you could take as much (within reason) or a little as you wanted. It was also nice to get to know fellow travelers while we sat down and ate.
After filling our faces with fish, we then headed off to try the infamous Icelandic hot dog. I recommend you try the hotdog with the works- Icelandic ketchup, Icelandic mustard, remoulade sauce, deep-fried onion, raw onion. I’m not sure I can describe the taste, but it was delicious. I loved the deep-fried onion on it! There aren’t many places to site as it’s a hotdog stand so if it’s cold, you’ll scarf these down pretty quick.
The next stop was at, Íslenski Barinn, to try some Icelandic meat soup. This was my least favorite dish as I’m not a fan of lamb. The broth had a nice flavor though. It was also wonderful to sit down again and enjoy some time chatting with the other travelers. By this time I was starting to get full so I appreciated the break between meals.
Our fourth stop, Ostabúðin, was very interesting, as it wasn’t just a restaurant but also a butcher/cheese shop. I had passed it earlier in the day while walking through Reykjavik and it was crowded so I was excited about our tasting here. We sampled some Icelandic cheese and meats that are popular in Iceland as a snack.
On the menu for the meats were: Cured Icelandic sheep seasoned with rosemary, thyme and anise, Cured Icelandic horse seasoned with rosemary, thyme and Curry Smoked Icelandic goose with Raspberry champagne vinaigrette.
The goose was my favourite and paired really well with the vinaigrette. Some people opted not to try some of the meats which was totally fine.
The best was saved for last- well if you are a fan of dessert! We finished off the tour at Cafe Loki, for some Rye bread ice cream. Yes, you read that correctly. This ice cream was delicious and has to be tasted!
Finally, our tour was done. I can’t say enough good things about this tour. The food was delicious and with well thought out stops. Our guide, Agnes, was enthusiastic and we had fun learning fun facts about Iceland and sharing some English sayings with her. She also introduced me to chocolate bars with licorice that I have developed a real love for!
Being part of this food tour was one of my favorite memories of my trip to Iceland. I highly recommend that you try a tour if you have any interest in local cuisine. For my solo travel friends, this was a great tour to meet other solo travelers who provided me with great tips on where else to visit!
Have you gone on a food tour while visiting a new place?
Looking to do something more relaxing on your stay in Reykjavik ? Check out my visit to the amazing Blue lagoon.