Reykjavík’s Dill restaurant, run by chef Gunnar Karl Gíslason and sommelier Ólafur Örn Ólafsson, is the first venue in Iceland to win a coveted Michelin star. It specializes in New Nordic Cuisine, which means that the kitchen updates traditional dishes such as arctic char, pork belly, and lamb shanks in highly creative and ultradelicious ways—often pairing them with healthy ingredients like barley, berries, and kale. The restaurant is open four evenings a week, and the seven-course menu changes regularly based on availability of local ingredients. Food can be paired with a fabulous selection of champagnes and wines. It’s not the cheapest choice in town, but it is one of the best.

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Iceland's Best Restaurant: No Contest

I’m biased when I say this after having worked with Iceland chef Gunnar Karl Gislason for two years on a cookbook for Ten Speed Press but I also am completely confident in my claim that his restaurant Dill is far and away the best restaurant in Iceland. Gunnar is the chef who introduced new Nordic cooking to his nation and his dishes reflect the adherence to tradition and pride of place filtered through a contemporary lens that is the benchmark of the chef’s cooking. Experiences at Dill are elegant yet whimsical and always inspired and extraordinary. I always say to Gunnar that he could blindfold me and feed me his dishes and in spite of not being able to see their beauty on the plate, I would enjoy them just as much. They are just that flavorful. This is a must for any food lover visiting Iceland. You will leave a happier person, content in knowing you have experienced the very best that Iceland has to offer.

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