We celebrated Tanja’s big 25 year old birthday recently with an amazing day in Reykjavik. One of our highlights was a visit to one of my all time favourite restaurants in Reykjavik, Apótek where we did an awesome Cocktail workshop!
About Apótek restaurant
Apótek restaurant opened their doors in December 2014 and has been one of my very favourite – And most visited restaurants ever since. They are located as much in the heart of Reykjavik as possible and have a welcoming fine dining atmosphere. The cuisine is mostly Icelandic but with an European twist. For me personally, even though their seafood & steaks are to die for … I have to keep their amazing pastry in a special favourite. Also, I believe that their craft cocktail bar is outstanding and definitely one of the best in Reykjavik.
Fun fact: Being quite obvious for Icelandic readers but hopefully entertaining for some – Apótek means a pharmacy in Icelandic and the building used to originally house the old pharmacy in Reykjavik. The old spirit of the building is kept really well with minor resembles, the cocktail list is also called the “prescription list” and the mixologists wear white pharmacists jackets at night!
The Cocktail Workshop
Basically, we (me, tanja + a 15 other day drinkers) met with the very talented Jónas, head bartender at Apótek at 16.00 and he introduced us to the restaurant as he talked slightly about the kitchen, the bar and the philosophy behind the whole operation.
Next, for our very big surprise and happiness we learned that this wasn’t only a cocktail workshop where we expected to learn, drink and get a little tipsy – But we were also offered a food pairing with every drink. So, ahead of us we had 5 amazingly different cocktails & a beautiful meal parings to enjoy with it.
Just to give you an even better insight – I’ll share the experience here:
Arctic Char paired with Dillagin – An amazing cocktail that I am way to familiar with. Mostly made with a dill infused gin that they make themselves behind the bar.
24hr slow cooked beefribs with Ísbúi cheese, served with the house Negroni.
Icelandic lobster with the Apotek twist of French 75 (A gin cocktail with rosemary, pineapple and champagne!).
Grilled & smoked octopus served with the off menu cocktail – El Chapo. This was probably the birthday girls favourite as it was super unique (dark rum, mango & hot sauce!) and a little spicy which gave it a gentle kick.
Slow cooked rack of lamb served with Don Estragon. This was my surprise of the day as I had never tried this cocktail before. A vodka based drink (which is normally not my favourite) with absinthe, lemon and their home made Tarragon syrup. The syrup gave it a super strange liquorice flavour.
Our evening and specially the Cocktail workshop at Apótek was AWESOME and simply the best way to start our fan birthday celebration. Big recommend for every foodie & cocktail maniac. Also a great way to get to know Apótek restaurant & understand what they stand for.
From here, we went (slightly tipsy) to check into a hotel that I had arranged for the night and had to make more space for food as we had another dinner reservation only two hours later.
Just for curious readers we visited the Food Cellar later that night for dinner & drinks and spent our night at the Centre Hotel Arnarhvoll 🙂
If you need any more info, here is the Apótek website.
Pro Apótek tip:
They have one of the best “happy hours” in town as they offer a big 50% discount of their
AMAZING cocktail list, draft beers and house wines everyday between 16-18!
Thanks for the read, Happy Saturday!