Saturday Night


Scores of tourists travel to Iceland to experience the much talked about Reykjavik nightlife. To those about to embark on a three day, “dirty weekend”, as Icelandair once upon a time advertised, I must say: be prepared to max out your credit card.

Iceland is, as Bart and I have written about recently, expensive – an island only corrupt politicians with foreign assets can afford.

I’ve always known Iceland was spendy. And after five years, just how over-priced the rock is has finally started to sink in. Okay, so I’m a bit thick, but better late than never.

So there I was on a Saturday night at Hverfisbar, a bar I normally avoid due to the clientele. The bar is frequented by those Icelanders who think their blonde hair isn’t blonde enough so they bleach it. They also spend large swaths of time in tanning saloons. Because Icelandic brewers mistook the word beer for rotgut, I decided to order a bottled beer. My non-Icelandic choices were Carlsberg, MGD and Budweiser.

“Gimme a Bud.”

“That’s 600 krona,” the bartender said.

(For those of you not familiar with the exchange rate, that comes to $9.60.)

“You could get a half-rack for that price,” my friend said in disbelief.

Hey, it’s imported.

This ten-dollar beer came on the heels of a $13 glass of wine.

As I drank my Bud, all I could think about, other than the young Icelandic woman wearing an interesting blouse she said she purchased in Thailand, was that scene in “Pulp Fiction” where John Travolta is flabbergasted by the $5 dollar milkshake Uma Thurman orders.

That diner ain’t got nothing on Hverfisbar. EW

Views expressed here are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Iceland Review.