Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Events: Taste of Iceland in DC

Calling all Vikings. The Greater Washington metro area welcomes all things Icelandic, as it plays host to “A Taste of Iceland” from April 12 through April 15, 2012. The multi-day event will feature Icelandic cuisine, music, film and culture throughout Washington, D.C. and the metropolitan region. This sneak-peek of Iceland will whet the appetites of Washingtonians – just in time, as Icelandair reopens its non-stop service from Dulles to Reykjavik.  I had a blast in Iceland last year and it is so much fun to get a taste of the cuisine here in DC.

The multi-day cultural extravaganza will include activities ranging from having the opportunity to savor dishes designed by a World Culinary Cup Winner to listening to two of Reykjavik’s most exciting new bands and viewing two of Iceland’s hottest film exports.  All events are open to the public – many of which can be enjoyed free of charge.  “A Taste of Iceland” is presented by Iceland Naturally, a partnership that includes Icelandic USA Inc., Icelandair, 66 North, The Blue Lagoon, Reyka Vodka, Icelandic Glacial Water, Islandsbanki, the City of Reykjavik, Keflavik Airport, Landsvirkjun and Promote Iceland. Iceland Naturally represents the best of Icelandic products in North America. As a combined council of Icelandic brands, it proudly displays Iceland through products that include pure glacial water, clean and renewable energy, sustainable fresh fish, and a totally unique travel experience. 

The four days of events will be hosted stateside by RIS Restaurant in D.C., The Fillmore Silver Spring and The AMC Loews Uptown 1 Theater.  Highlights for “A Taste of Iceland” include:
Chef Thrainn Freyr, World Culinary Cup Winner and Bocuse d’Or competitor, will delight area foodies from Thursday, April 12 – Sunday, April 15, 2012 with his acclaimed Icelandic cooking.  Chef Thrainn will join Sous Chef Sarah Biglan at RIS in the heart of Washington’s West End.  RIS will feature a special four-course menu during “A Taste of Iceland,” showcasing fresh ingredients sourced locally in Iceland.  Attendees of the four-day event will continue to be inspired by the cool Icelandic cocktail, the “Reykjavik 101.”  The custom-made drink, developed by Bryan Smith, a member of the RIS bar team, features Reyka Vodka, Corsair Gin, and house made vermouth with a Meyer lemon twist.
The Icelandic menu will be offered for $65.00 and will include:
Icelandic Arctic Char
Slow cooked Arctic Char served with pickled cucumber, sprinkled with ground dried
“Söl,” Icelandic seaweed and estragon flavored aioli
Wild Caught Icelandic cod
Pan fried lightly salted cod served with glazed carrots, Icelandic “Geysir” rye bread crumbles and citrus sauce (The “Geysir” rye bread is baked in a geothermal hot spring at the Geysir geothermal area in Haukadal, Iceland)
Icelandic Free-Range Lamb
Wood roasted shoulder of lamb and grilled loin of lamb with glazed Jerusalem artichokes, dried grapes, roasted almonds and infused dill
The Viking Skyr Tiramisu
Icelandic Skyr and cream cheese mousse with spicy cake, coffee syrup and coffee ice cream
(Skyr is a cultured dairy product unique to Iceland - a staple since the Vikings. Skyr is fat free, fresh and creamy, thicker than yogurt and made from nutritive-rich skim milk)
RIS is located at 2275 L Street, NW and can be accessed via the Foggy Bottom Metro stop.  RIS is a neighborhood restaurant, known for its casual sophistication and market fresh cuisine in the style of Chef Ris Lacoste.  For more information visit,, or to make a reservation, call 202.730.2500 or logon to
Chef Thrainn Freyr, World Culinary Cup and Culinary Olympics Winner, is head chef at Kolabrautin in Reykjavik.  He is known for incorporating only the freshest ingredients into inventive dishes inspired by the modern Nordic wave in cuisine and the ancient traditions of the Mediterranean.  Chef Thrainn is one of Iceland’s most brilliant young chefs.  In 2011, he took seventh place in the Bocuse d’Or, one of the world’s most prestigious international cooking competitions.  In 2009, he was awarded the silver medal in the Scandinavian Chef of the Year Competition.  He was also part of the Icelandic Culinary team that brought home two gold medals and two silver medals in 2008, and in 2007 Chef Thrainn was the Icelandic Chef of the Year.
Chef Sarah Biglan joined RIS after working at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel where she worked under Cityzen’s, Eric Ziebold.  Chef Biglan began her career in the South Pacific, working in Hawaii for a bakery.  There she decided on more formal training and was accepted into the Culinary Institute of America and completed her internship with the Ritz Carlton, Naples. Upon graduation, she accepted a job with the Ritz Carlton, Washington, DC where she worked as a roundsman throughout the hotel. She credits her love for food to her family and resides in Washington, D.C.

  • Win a Trip to Iceland Airwaves in Reykjavik!
To celebrate Icelandair resuming service from Washington, D.C. out of Dulles International Airport (IAD) to Reykjavik beginning March 29, 2012, Washingtonians can visit and enter for a chance to win a trip for two to Reykjavik on Icelandair. For more information about Iceland Airwaves, visit  

The giveaway is a wonderful opportunity for more U.S. residents to truly see all Iceland has to offer.  “In 2011 Iceland and the United States commemorated 70 years of diplomatic relations between the countries.  Iceland has a long-standing cooperation with the United States, based on a strong friendship between the two. Culture, defense, and not the least of which, business, are among those celebrated close ties. The biggest airliner, Icelandair, for example, commenced its pioneering low-fare services across the North-Atlantic in 1953. The airline is extending its seasonal service from Washington-Dulles International, starting March 29, 2012 and will be increasing flights up to six per week beginning June 11, 2012, to over 20 destinations in Europe” confirmed Ambassador Stefansson.

For further information on “A Taste of Iceland” in the Washington, D.C. metro area, log onto, become a fan on Facebook at or follow @IcelandNatural on Twitter.
Photos by Emily Clack


City0880 said...

nice idea.. thanks for sharing.

Lauren DeSantis-Then said...

Iceland is great!

Caz said...

Great article. Also wanted to share the following information with everyone: Attention DC Metro area: High Quality Sersafe Food Management Classes available for you. Classes will be held in Bethesda, MD and the next class starts on March 16, 2013.
Register Today!!!