Ten constantly excellent restaurants in Downtown Reykjavik
Iceland’s beauty is unparalleled. From fiery, active volcanoes, sparkling waterfalls, rugged mountain cliffs to the beautiful northern lights dancing in the sky, and the capital city of Reykjavik is nothing short of mesmerizing and diverse in her own right.
This diversity applies to the food culture as well. Being inspired by the resources and ingredients that we have available around us. Reykjavik food is fresh and pure with no artificial ingredients, as restaurants get their daily catch from the waters around them and where the meat usually comes from local farmers.
Below, we have listed ten excellent restaurants you will find in the Reykjavik city center that will not disappoint you as they have a constant reputation to excel.
1. Sægreifinn – The Sea Baron
Located by the old harbor, this restaurant serves the most spectacular seafood. You should check out The Sea Baron. Its specialty is the lobster soup; creamy and well seasoned, it is something that you should not miss. Maybe try a sample of the Minke Whale too if you are adventurous, and you will not be disappointed.
This restaurant is always a stop on our Reykjavik Food Lovers Tour.
Opening hours: Every day from 11:30 – 22:00
2. Matur og Drykkur
This classy restaurant is quite a find. It serves traditional Icelandic cuisine with a modern twist. They use first-class produce and bring innovation into the mix. The design, the food, and the beautiful setting will exceed your expectations. Always a great stop for a foodie adventure! What we love to dine on there: The Codhead and the Icelandic Blue Mussels.
Opening hours: Wednesday – Sunday from 17:00 – 23:00
3. Þrír Frakkar
If a place is buzzing with locals when you visit a new city, then that probably means the food there is pretty good. This traditional restaurant is one of those gems. It is a golden oldie that serves all the Icelandic classics. The restaurant is cozy, and the service is very attentive. If you want an excellent local dining experience, this is the place to visit.
Owned by one of the most famous chefs in Iceland it does not disappoint
Some excellent dishes to try out: The Lamb fillet and the Baccalá (Salted Cod)
Opening hours: Lunch 11:30 – 14:30 and Dinner 18:00 – 22:30
4. Fiskfelagid – Fish Company
Now this one is a little heavy on the pocket, but it serves excellent fish. Some say it’s the best Sushi restaurant in the world.
Considering that Reykjavik and Iceland, for that matter, is full of options of delicious fish, it takes extra hard work to stand out. This restaurant has done just that. The atmosphere is beautiful, and the food will keep you coming back for more. Its specialty is The Around Iceland tasting menu, but I would personally go for the Sushi Festival (only served for 2+)
Opening hours: Weekdays 11:30-14:30 and 17:30-22:30 and on weekends it’s just open for dinner from 17:00-11:30
5. Fiskmarkadurinn – The Fish Market
This restaurant, which specializes in fish as the name implies, is located on Adalstraeti (the main street) by Ingólfur square, which is the regular meeting spot for all of our Reykjavik Walking Tours.
A stop here is a real treat, and there I would suggest savoring either the Salmon or the Cod.
The service is exemplary, and the food is exquisite. If you plan on visiting it, please book ahead as an Icelandic TV chef owns it, so always buzzing.
Opening hours: 17:30 – 23:00
The Grill market is simply a beautiful restaurant both for its atmosphere, vibes, and of course, the constantly excellent food. I would recommend the tasting menu there (served for the whole table) as it takes you on a journey around Iceland one bite at a time.
I will put this on my top 3 list if you are willing to spend a little to try the best cuisine Iceland has to offer.
Opening hours: 17:30 – 22:30
This restaurant serves starters from around the world and is located down by the old Reykjavik harbor. They offer an exciting twist to traditional dishes at reasonable prices.
The menu keeps on changing, but the quality and taste remain impeccable. We recommend picking out a couple of dishes and sharing it with your family & friends. This restaurant is one of my absolute favorite restaurants in Iceland for its chilled environment and excellent food.
Some noteworthy dishes are the lamb fillet and the delicious langoustine soup (Icelandic lobster is langoustine), but if you are adventurous, you should check out a bite of the grilled fillet of a horse.
Opening hours: 16:00 – 22:00
The name references the dining room for the sailors on boats, and, as the name implies, this restaurant has the focus on the sea. It is a perfect lunch option as they have daily lunch offers. There, I would check out the very traditional Icelandic fish stew that they serve with rye bread (that’s sometimes called Lavabread in Iceland)
Opening hours: 11:00-15:00 and from 17:00-22:00
9. Svarta Kaffið
This place is famous for one thing. Serving homemade soups in a bread bowl.
Usually, there are just two soup options to keep it simple for you to choose: Meat or Veg, and keep in mind that you can eat the bread bowl, so it fills you up fast.
A very hearty dining option and to put it simply, this is food that warms our soul.
The staff is always friendly and welcoming, but keep in mind that this is a pretty small place, so it fills up fast. This Café is a pretty good stop for your wallet too
Opening hours: 11:30-23:00
10. Sæta Svínið Gastropub
This fun place is always one of our favorite stops on both our Reykjavik Food Tour and Reykjavik Beer Tour. It serves good food in a lively environment, and the service is always done with a smile.
They have three floors to choose from, so if you want a romantic setting, I would suggest the 2nd floor, but if you like the buzz and excitement, stay on the 1st floor.
There I would choose the delicious Lamb shank, or if you want to share, I would suggest the slow-cooked lamb shoulder.
Opening hours: 11:30-23:30
While there are still many other amazing options out there to choose from, these are some of our top picks, and we hope you find them as amazing as we do!
If you are looking to try some foods while in Iceland, check out our Reykjavik Food Tour