Though we didn’t particularly enjoy our stay at the Icelandair Reykjavik Natura Hotel, we did love the classic and festive Icelandic Christmas dinner spread offered Christmas Day. Considering everything else in the city was closed, we didn’t have many options for sustenance, so we were fortunate to be staying someplace where the food was exceptional.
► Ranking: #cleandiaper
Icelandair Reykjavik Natura Hotel
Phone: +354 444 4050
Price: 10,400 ISK Adults | Half Price Children 6-12 | Free Under 12
The restaurant is located on the main floor adjacent to the check-in desk. It is an open air restaurant, with the kitchen located along the back wall. It is beautifully decorated, visually stunning with open brick ovens and glowing fires, white linen tablecloths with multiple collections of silverware, and food stretched out over the full restaurant arena.
Traditional Icelandic Christmas dinner includes Skate (putrefied shark) Smoked Ham, Reindeer, Ptarmigan (a grouse bird served with red cabbage), Hangikjöt (smoked lamb served with bechamel sauce), Risalamande (cold rice pudding served with cream and almonds), and of course Christmas Cookies & Leaf Bread (paper thin round biscuit with decorate snowflake patterns cut out). This buffet included all of the above and more including cheeses, fruit, and a selection of breads.
Icelandic food is different than American food, and virtually all other cuisine in the world. It has a different flavor, uses different spices, and is heavy on the fish. We really enjoyed the opportunity to step outside our comfort zone and introduce our kids and ourselves to foods that we not only would never get at home, but probably would never eat again.
► For Kids: Different is the word of the day here. I’m going to be honest, some of the items were pretty gross. However, we are big fans of getting kids out of their comfort zones and trying new activities and new foods at an early age. This Icelandic Christmas dinner definitely does that, and offers a great world view of cuisine and celebrations.
Have you ever eaten harkal, skate, or reindeer? If not, then you should immediately plan a trip to spend Christmas in Iceland. It is an experience you and your tastebuds will never forget.
► Nap-Time Version: Our festive Icelandic Christmas Dinner Buffet experience with kids.
Check out all the other fun adventures we had in Iceland, including visiting a collapsed volcanic crater, a frozen waterfall, and of course, how to celebrate Christmas in Iceland.