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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Icelandic Cuisine: Whale and Lamb

We went for dinner at Fish Market in Reykjavik to try a few staple Icelandic dishes. First, we are given bread plate with a spicy mayo dipping sauce. And from the chef, a delicious salmon tartare crisp. The restaurant was upscale, in the heart of Reykjavik, and dimly lit despite the 10PM sunshine peeking through blackout curtains.

Minke Whale was our appetizer of choice. We were told it has a similar taste to steak, so what could be bad about that? It came to our table raw in the center, and seared on the outside. The plate was garnished with radishes and a ginger soy dipping sauce. Upon my first bite I think the flavor isn't bad. Then I start to chew and I envision Free Willy. I am not sure if this was totally in my head, but it had a blubbery texture. Needless to say, I won't try whale again! My second piece almost came back up. Grossssss.

For the main course, a plate of lamb with artichoke purée and pickled beets. Amazing! It made up for the sad appetizer. I'm having guilt about eating whale, especially because so many activists on the streets of Reykjavik were trying to get us to sign a "Save the Whales" petition. Needless to say, I didn't sign it. And in my defense, the Minke Whale is on the "not at risk" category as far as endangerment goes. Okay, now I can sleep at night!

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