by Jade Conroy, The Telegraph, March 15, 2017
An outpost of Jamie’s Italian, the household British restaurant chain headed up by TV chef Jamie Oliver, is set to open in Iceland’s capital of Reykjavik this spring.
Construction work has begun on the restaurant which will sit inside the historic Hotel Borg. Built in 1930, it was the first luxury hotel to be built in Iceland, and was opened in honour of native adventurer Jóhannes Jósefsson.
Despite having numerous renovations and updates over the years (including the recent addition of a spa), the hotel still has many of its original Art Deco features, including the ceiling in the Golden Hall, and room number plaques.
The works on Jamie’s Italian will be respectful to these features, and will be styled in way that is in keeping with the hotel's aesthetic: think parquet floors, pendant lighting, tan leather booths and golden-edged mirrors.
The restaurant will have an open kitchen– so guests can see the chefs in action – plus a chef’s table. Menus, like at Oliver’s other outposts of the restaurant, will follow a traditional Italian format, with antipasti, pasta, secondi and pizza sections. It will include favourites such as the ‘Fantastic Fried Gnocchi’, oxtail lasagne and the ‘Truffle Shuffle’ pizza.
The menu will follow a similar format to Oliver's other outposts of Jamie's Italian.
According to Paul Sullivan, our Iceland expert, Hotel Borg is ‘set on one of the most scenic and pleasantly landscaped squares in the city centre (Austurvöllur). Its esteemed neighbours include the Icelandic parliament and Reykjavik cathedral.’
Jamie Oliver said of the new venture: “I’m incredibly excited to be bringing Jamie’s Italian to Iceland – Reykjavik is a beautiful city with a rich heritage, fantastic food scene and real passion and love for locally sourced ingredients, so it's the perfect spot for us."
The opening follows news of fellow TV chef James Martin’s new restaurant and cookery school, named the Kitchen, which will open in April at luxury country house hotel Chewton Glen in the New Forest. And he's not the only one: Gordon Ramsay, another TV mainstay, has his own hotel and restaurant, York & Albany, in north London, while Rick Stein operates a collection of boutique b&bs and restaurants with rooms in Padstow, Cornwall .
Jamie’s Italian Iceland is set to open in April.
Hotel Borg, Posthusstraeti 11, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland. Double rooms from £190 in low season; rising to £300 in high. Breakfast excluded (£14). Free Wi-Fi.