Quick, name a few notable Icelandic imports! Did you get much further than Bjork? Well, it just so happens they’re also a semi-sizable exporter of fish, which explains the debut of New York City’s first, straight-out-of-Iceland restaurant.
With locations in downtown Reykjavik and now the West Village, Icelandic Fish and Chips aims to take on a grease-laden British favorite and give it a wholesome Nordic twist of their own. Fried in sunflower oil and cloaked in lacy spelt batter, fish is airlifted regularly from the spectacularly cold Atlantic waters surrounding Iceland, and expand beyond regular suspects like cod, haddock and hake, to include lesser-seen delicacies like light and lean ling, finely textured tusk, sweet rose fish and dense spotted wolf fish.
Chips also get a body conscious update, appearing, instead, as hand-cut, oven roasted potato wedges, tossed with chopped parsley and Icelandic sea salt, or twigs of rosemary and garlic. And considering the rise and rise, stateside, of Scandinavian cuisine, patrons should already be duly familiar with ingredients like skyr, a creamy tangy product reminiscent of yogurt, that replaces mayonnaise in a slate of dipping sauces, as well as nubbly sheets of crispbread, used to scoop everything from shrimp salad to cauliflower dip to dill and lemon-tossed cucumber with smoked Arctic char (a gluten-free alternative is the traditional stockfish; crackers formed from dehydrated filets, hearkening back to pre-industrial Iceland, when grain was in short supply).
And then there’s the drinks program, which bypasses beer for sprightlier options specifically designed to complement fish; think sparkling wines and vinho verde, as well as cocktails like the Arctic Gimlet, featuring aquavit, dill and thyme.
Brits can keep their beloved chippies — thanks to this unique Icelandic import, New York’s in a Nordic state of mind.
Icelandic Fish and Chips
28 7th Ave S