The Gallery Restaurant, Reykjavik, 7/29/17

building
building

The Gallery Restaurant is located in the Hotel Holt.  It is a medium sized place that is named because of all the artwork that is in the restaurant as well as the hotel itself. The dining room is elegant with long table clothes, sparkling crystal, soft background music, dark wood ceiling and formally dressed waiters.  Some half wall partitions further divide the well spaced tables.  Service was helpful and efficient but definitely no chatting in the dining room however the bartender was much more friendly and enjoyed showing us around.  There is a large a la carte menu that also offers a chef’s tasting menu.  The wine list is on the pricey side but large.  Be aware though, since the wine is printed rather than electronic, the year may not be as listed and you will not be notified.   Continue reading

Messinn, Reykjavik, 7/29/17

exterior
exterior

Messinn is a large place that been here one year.  Interior dining is in several different areas and there are tables outside, if weather permits.  Pop music plays in the background, the tables are of bare wood, and napkins are paper.  Wood beams line the ceiling and murals of the sea and other nautical items provide the decor.  Service is efficient and helpful but not overly chatty.  The menu is small at lunch and specializes in pan-fried fish which are brought out in the skillet complete with greens and potatoes.  Portions are generous.  It’s not earth shattering food but it is quite good, quick and reasonable. Continue reading

Fiskmarkaðurinn (Fish Market), Reykjavik, 7/28/17

building
building

The Fish Market is in an old house with a seating area, waiting room and bar upstairs and the kitchen and additional seating downstairs.  There were also about 6 stools facing the open kitchen.  Soft background music plays and the bare wood tables are paired with lattice work decorations on the walls and wide planked wood floors.  It was packed the evening we were there but the noise level wasn’t too bad even though the perimeter tables are fairly close to one another.  The middle of the floor had the bigger tables and they were more generously spaced.  Service was super friendly,  helpful and provided good pacing for the meal.  It was an integral part of the success of the meal and possibly why the business has been flourishing for 10 years this August.  They offer a 9 course tasting menu and an a la carte menu.  We chose the tasting menu and our own bottles of wine, as opposed to the optional pairings (which are only 7 wines).  They do have a fairly reasonable wine list as well as a selection of house wines.   Continue reading

Snaps Bistro, Reykjavik, 7/28/17

building
building

Snaps is a medium sized place on the bottom floor of a corner building.  They have a variety of tables inside as well as an attached greenhouse-like portion and bar counter seating.  The tables are fairly close and set with nice linen napkins and paper on top of the tablecloth.  Menus are in the form of a placemat and at lunch the prices are less than dinner.  There is some background music but noise didn’t seem to be a problem at lunch even though it was a large and lively crowd. Service is friendly and helpful.  They offer a ‘Catch of the Day’ which changes regularly.   Continue reading

Dill Restaurant, Reykjavik, 7/27/17

entrance
entrance

Dill has been in business for 2 years and is the only Michelin starred restaurant in Iceland.  It was originally a barn and now has a small front room and 3 counter seats at the finishing kitchen as well as additional seating in another room, but that seemed to filled by a private party.  Windows to the street form one side of the main room and a large window looking out at a back garden is opposite that.  A bench seat lines one other wall with closely set tables as they also are on the main floor.  Walls are of concrete, the ceiling of wood,  a combination of candlelight and a skylight provide most of the low lighting and there was  subtle background music. The night we were there it was quite warm in the restaurant but I suspect this is not normally a problem. Continue reading

Þrír Frakkar (“3 Coats”), Reykjavik, 7/27/17

Building and entrance
Building and entrance

Prír Frakkar is a small place with 2 inside rooms and a covered patio.  The name is for the 3 people who opened the place, however now there is only 1 coat in charge and thus a single large coat graces the bar.  The walls are covered with decorations that are fun to look at,  tables are fairly close and tables are set with paper napkins.  There is a casual and welcoming ambiance with friendly and helpful servers.  At lunch it wasn’t hard to get in but I understand at night there can be quite a wait and I would bet the noise level is much louder.  It is a good sized menu with lots of choices of very typical Icelandic foods which they have offered for 27 years.  It is off the main tourist walkways and seemed to attract lots of residents.   Continue reading

Matur og Drykkur, Reykjavik, 7/26/17

building
building

Matur og Drykkur is a medium sized place located in an old salt fish factory built in 1924 that now also houses the Saga Museum.  The name means “food and drink” and they specialize in Icelandic food with a modern twist.  American music plays in the background of this lively spot, where it was packed on a weekday evening.  The bare wood tables are slightly spaced and there are also 6 seats at a bar in front, near the open finishing kitchen. Soft warm lighting is pleasant but can effect the food colors and the nice cloth napkins are way too small. Reservations are for a 2 hour block and they did turn the tables but rushing would be difficult with the slow pacing.  Service was friendly but disorganized – they brought the wrong plates a couple times and you’d notice someone doing the same tasting menu who was behind you and then ahead as their food came out more rapidly.  They do offer 3 different tasting menus as well as an a la carte menu.   Continue reading