Fjalakötturinn was originally the name of Iceland’s first movie theatre, which opened in 1906. The theatre has also been used for other purposes besides film screenings over the years, and was in fact the meeting place for the Icelandic Communist Party in the 1930s. Despite having been one of Reykjavik’s most famous multipurpose buildings throughout the 20th century, it was finally torn down in 1985; and it’s demolition has been extremely controversial. The original Fjalaköttur building is still mourned by locals today.
However in 2005, it was decided to restore Aðalstræti to its former glory with the new houses being built in the style of bygone days. A restaurant was opened in the house where the old Fjalakötturinn theatre used to be and of course it was named Fjalaköturinn. Although not a movie theatre or a meeting place for the former communist party, it feels nice to have Fjalakötturinn back in town.
Fjalakötturinn’s kitchen offers a variety of food from the new Nordic cuisine and specialises in traditional Icelandic dishes made from selected Icelandic ingredients. Fjalakötturinn has also won the Wine Spectators Award of Excellence for its exclusive wine list. For a long time, it was a popular belief in
Iceland that apart from fish and lamb, the island didn’t have a lot to offer and all subsequent cooking styles depended heavily on imported ingredients. However, it is now the trend to go local; to explore the materials Iceland can offer and turn them into delicious dishes. A food that was once considered to be just common fare is the Icelandic yoghurt, ‘Skyr’ that can turn into a wonderful Skyr-cake dessert with few alterations. Fjalakötturinn’s kitchen believes in the value of local ingredients and local cooking and takes pride in the Icelandic way of cooking. It is straightforward cooking where original, quality ingredients meet excellence and skills in the kitchen. The outcome can, of course, be nothing other than sensational.
More information is available on www.fjalakotturinn.is