23 Drinks from Iceland You Didn’t Know: Spirits | Cocktails | Wine | Beer | Alcohol-free

This exhaustive list of Icelandic drinks will take you on a journey through the diverse world of flavors, traditions, and innovations unique to Iceland. Let’s explore a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, from the potent spirits, cocktails, wines and beers inspired by the island’s rugged landscapes to the hot and cold non-alcoholic options that mirror its pure, natural resources.

1. Spirits from Iceland

1.1. Icelandic Liquor

1) Icelandic Vodka

Reyka Vodka
  • Small-batch, lava-filtered vodka.

Reyka Vodka stands out as a prime example of Icelandic ingenuity, utilizing the country’s pristine natural resources. Distilled in small batches and filtered through lava rocks, Reyka offers a smooth, clean taste with a slight hint of sweetness. Its production in Borgarnes, amidst Iceland’s vast landscapes, ensures a vodka imbued with the spirit of the land of fire and ice.

Eimverk Distillery’s Vor Vodka
  • Icelandic barley vodka.

Vor Vodka by Eimverk Distillery is a testament to Iceland’s agricultural heritage, distilled entirely from native Icelandic barley. The unique terroir gives Vor a distinctive character – crisp, with a delicate balance of sweetness and earthiness. This vodka not only reflects the purity of Icelandic nature but also the tradition and innovation of Icelandic distillation.

2) Icelandic Gin

Himbrimi Gin
  • Wild juniper, herbal gin.

Himbrimi Gin captures the essence of the Icelandic summer with its wild juniper and handpicked Arctic herbs. This gin is a celebration of the midnight sun, offering a harmonious blend of floral and citrus notes. Its small-batch production ensures a high-quality spirit that embodies Iceland’s wild and untamed nature.

Eimverk Distillery’s Vor Gin
  • Barley-based, botanical gin.

Vor Gin, crafted by Eimverk Distillery, is a pioneering spirit distilled from Icelandic barley and infused with native botanicals, including birch, Arctic thyme, and moss. This gin’s profile is a journey through Iceland’s flora, presenting a complex yet balanced taste that’s both refreshing and deeply rooted in the Icelandic landscape.

Martin Miller’s Gin
  • Icelandic water-blended gin.

Martin Miller’s Gin uniquely bridges British distillation tradition with Iceland’s unparalleled natural resources. Blended with the purest Icelandic water, this gin achieves an extraordinary softness and clarity. The result is a versatile spirit that excels in cocktails, celebrated for its vibrant juniper core, accented with citrus and spice nuances.

3) Icelandic Whiskey

Floki Icelandic Whiskey
  • Single malt, barley whiskey.

Floki Icelandic Whiskey is Iceland’s foray into whiskey making, distinguished by its use of 100% Icelandic barley. This single malt whiskey, aged in the clean, crisp air of Iceland, carries hints of the island’s unique flavors – a touch of peat, with a sweet, complex finish. Floki is a bold statement of Iceland’s capacity to produce world-class whiskey, drawing from its rich natural bounty.

1.2. Icelandic Liqueurs

4) Icelandic Birch Liqueurs

Björk Birch Liqueur
  • Birch sap sweet liqueur.

Björk Birch Liqueur is a unique Icelandic creation, made from the sap of birch trees found in the island’s vast forests. This liqueur offers a subtle sweetness and woody notes, capturing the essence of Iceland’s natural beauty. Its smooth and earthy flavor profile makes it a perfect after-dinner sip or a creative cocktail ingredient.

Birkir Birch Bud Liqueur
  • Birch bud-infused liqueur.

Birkir Birch Bud Liqueur takes the Icelandic tradition of utilizing local flora to new heights. Infused with young birch buds, this liqueur presents a fresh, herbal taste with a hint of spring. It’s a reflection of Iceland’s pristine environment and a testament to the innovative spirit of Icelandic distilleries.

5) Icelandic Licorice Liqueurs

Opal Icelandic Liqueur
  • Bold, black licorice liqueur.

Opal Icelandic Liqueur is inspired by the classic Icelandic Opal candy, known for its intense licorice flavor and distinctive black color. This liqueur embodies a bold taste, making it a favorite for those who seek a strong and invigorating licorice and anise experience. Its deep color and robust flavor profile set it apart, offering a liqueur that’s as visually striking as it is in taste, perfect for creating dramatic cocktails or enjoying as a standalone sip.

Topas Icelandic Liqueur
  • Smooth, clear licorice liqueur.

Topas Icelandic Liqueur offers a gentler approach to the traditional Icelandic love for licorice. With its clear appearance and smooth, subtly spiced licorice flavor, Topas is versatile and inviting. The liqueur’s sweetness is balanced with a light spice, making it an excellent choice for a digestif or a sophisticated base in cocktails. Unlike the bold intensity of Opal, Topas provides a refined licorice experience that’s both accessible and nuanced.

6) Icelandic Berry Liqueurs

Crowberry Liqueur
  • Dark berry, sweet liqueur.

Crowberry Liqueur is a celebration of Iceland’s wild berries. Made from the crowberries that thrive in the Arctic climate, this liqueur boasts a deep, rich flavor with a perfect balance of sweetness and tartness. It’s a versatile spirit that complements a wide range of cocktails, adding a touch of Icelandic wilderness.

1.3. Other Icelandic Spirits

7) Icelandic Schnapps

Brennivín Caraway Schnapps
  • Caraway-infused Icelandic schnapps.

Brennivín, often dubbed ‘Black Death,’ is Iceland’s signature spirit. This caraway schnapps is known for its bold, savory flavor that cuts through the cold, making it a staple in Icelandic celebrations. Its distinct taste and cultural significance make it a must-try for anyone exploring Icelandic spirits.

Fjallagrasa Moss Schnapps
  • Moss-infused traditional schnapps.

Fjallagrasa Moss Schnapps is a testament to Iceland’s innovative use of local ingredients. Infused with Icelandic moss, this schnapps offers a unique, earthy flavor that echoes the island’s volcanic landscapes. It’s a spirit that connects you directly to the wild heart of Iceland.

8) Icelandic Moonshine

  • Traditional Icelandic moonshine.

Landi is Iceland’s take on moonshine, a clear, potent spirit that captures the raw spirit of Icelandic distillation. Traditionally homemade, Landi is enjoyed for its straightforward, strong character and serves as a base for many local concoctions, embodying the ruggedness and resilience of the Icelandic spirit.

2. Cocktails & Mixed Drinks from Iceland

2.1. Icelandic Cocktails & Alcoholic Mixed Drinks

9) Icelandic Vodka-Based Cocktails

Icelandic Mule
  • Vodka, ginger beer cocktail.

The Icelandic Mule is a refreshing twist on the classic Moscow Mule cocktail, featuring Iceland’s pristine Reyka Vodka mixed with spicy ginger beer and a splash of lime. This cocktail is celebrated for its crisp, invigorating flavor that perfectly balances the smoothness of Icelandic vodka with the zestiness of ginger, making it a beloved choice for any occasion.

Arctic Martini
  • Chilled, crisp gin martini.

The Arctic Martini elevates the classic martini with the clean, pure taste of Icelandic gin. Stirred or shaken with a hint of dry vermouth and garnished with a twist or olives, this cocktail is a testament to the simplicity and elegance of Iceland’s spirit offerings. It’s the perfect sip to capture the cool, serene beauty of the Arctic.

10) Icelandic Brennivín-Based Cocktails

Brennivín Cocktail
  • Caraway schnapps mixed drink.

A Brennivín Cocktail uses Iceland’s signature spirit to create a drink that’s as bold and unique as the island itself. Mixed with simple, complementary ingredients, this cocktail highlights Brennivín’s savory caraway notes, offering a taste experience that’s deeply rooted in Icelandic tradition.

Northern Lights Cocktail
  • Vibrant, Brennivín-based cocktail.

The Northern Lights Cocktail is inspired by the mesmerizing auroras of Iceland. Combining Brennivín with a blend of citrus and other liqueurs, this drink captivates with its dazzling colors and complex flavors, mirroring the natural spectacle that lights up the Icelandic skies.

Reykjavik Mule
  • Icelandic twist on the classic Mule.

The Reykjavik Mule takes the essence of the traditional Mule cocktail and infuses it with Icelandic spirit, using Brennivín or Icelandic vodka. Paired with ginger beer and fresh lime juice, it’s a drink that offers a refreshing kick with a distinctive Icelandic flair.

2.2. Hot Icelandic Alcoholic Beverages

11) Hot Brennivín Toddy

  • Warm, spiced Brennivín drink.

The Hot Brennivín Toddy blends the warmth of Brennivín with the comforting heat of a classic toddy. Infused with honey, lemon, and spices, this beverage is perfect for warding off the Icelandic chill, offering a cozy, aromatic drink that soothes and invigorates.

12) Icelandic Coffee

  • Coffee with a kick of Brennivín.

Icelandic Coffee combines rich, aromatic coffee with a generous pour of Brennivín, creating a drink that’s both energizing and warming. Topped with whipped cream, this indulgent beverage is a popular choice in Iceland’s cafes and homes, offering a delightful blend of comfort and tradition.

13) Blue Lagoon Hot Drink

  • Warm, blueberry-infused beverage.

Not to be confused with the famous cocktail, the Blue Lagoon Hot Drink is a unique Icelandic creation that combines the warmth of a hot beverage with the sweet, tangy flavors of blueberries. This comforting drink is perfect for chilly evenings, offering a taste of Iceland’s bountiful natural harvest in a mug.

3. Brewed & Fermented Alcoholic Beverages from Iceland

3.1. Icelandic Wine

14) Icelandic Fruit Wines

Icelandic Berry Wine
  • Berry-based, sweet wines.

Icelandic fruit wines, crafted from the country’s abundant wild berries, offer a unique take on traditional wine. These wines capture the essence of Iceland’s summer, with flavors ranging from the tartness of crowberries to the sweetness of bilberries, providing a delightful tasting experience that’s as diverse as Iceland’s landscapes.

Icelandic Rhubarb Wine
  • Tart, refreshing homemade wine.

Rhubarb Wine is a testament to Icelandic resourcefulness, turning the commonly grown rhubarb into a pleasantly tart and refreshing wine. This homemade beverage is a popular choice among locals, embodying the simplicity and purity of Icelandic home cooking and winemaking traditions.

3.2. Icelandic Beers

15) Icelandic Craft Beer

Einstök White Ale
  • Belgian-style, witbier ale.

Einstök White Ale is a Belgian-style witbier that stands out for its crisp, citrusy flavor with hints of coriander and orange peel. Brewed in the northern town of Akureyri, this craft beer is a favorite among both locals and visitors for its refreshing taste and quality ingredients.

Einstök Arctic Berry Ale
  • Ale with Arctic bilberries.

Einstök Arctic Berry Ale is a seasonal offering that showcases the unique flavor of Arctic bilberries, a wild cousin of blueberries found in Iceland’s highlands. This ale combines the tartness of the berries with a smooth, malty base, creating a beer that’s as intriguing as the land it comes from.

Einstök Toasted Porter
  • Rich, chocolatey dark beer.

The Einstök Toasted Porter delivers robust flavors of toasted malt, dark chocolate, and coffee. Its depth and richness make it an ideal companion for Iceland’s colder months, offering a comforting warmth with each sip.

Borg Brugghús Varieties
  • Innovative Icelandic craft beers with unique ingredients.

Borg Brugghús is know for its creative approach to craft beer, particularly with standout brews like Garún Icelandic Stout and Surtur Nr. 8.2. Garún is a robust stout with a complex flavor profile featuring hints of coffee, chocolate, and licorice, enriched by the use of Icelandic roasted barley. Surtur Nr. 8.2 is a smoky imperial stout that incorporates smoked barley and a touch of Icelandic angelica, giving it a distinct earthy and herbal undertone. These beers exemplify Borg Brugghús’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of traditional beer styles by integrating Iceland’s unique flavors.

Steðji Beer Varieties
  • Unique, locally inspired beers.

Steðji offers a range of innovative beers that incorporate local ingredients like thyme, Arctic birch, and even whale testicles smoked with sheep dung. These beers are a bold exploration of Icelandic tastes and traditions, perfect for the adventurous drinker.

16) Icelandic Lagers & Pilsners

Bríó Pilsner
  • Refreshing, hoppy lager.

Bríó Pilsner is a classic lager with a crisp, refreshing taste and a hoppy finish. Brewed in Reykjavik, it’s a testament to the simplicity and elegance of traditional pilsners, adapted to the purity and freshness of Icelandic water.

Kaldi Lager
  • Clean, classic Czech-style lager.

Kaldi Lager brings the timeless appeal of Czech-style lagers to Iceland, featuring a clean, balanced flavor with a subtle hop aroma. It’s a beer that’s both refreshing and satisfying, perfect for any occasion.

17) Icelandic Stout

Ölvisholt Lava
  • Smoky, Icelandic imperial stout.

Ölvisholt Lava is a bold, smoky imperial stout that captures the volcanic essence of Iceland. With its rich, complex flavors and a hint of smokiness, Lava is a beer that tells a story of fire and ice, appealing to those who appreciate depth and intensity in their beer.

3.3. Other Icelandic Fermented Drinks

18) Icelandic Mead

  • Honey-based fermented beverage.

Icelandic mead harks back to the Viking Age, made from pure Icelandic water and local honey. This ancient beverage is experiencing a resurgence, offering a sweet, complex flavor profile that connects drinkers with Iceland’s rich history and storytelling tradition.

19) Icelandic Cider

  • Fruit-based fermented beverage.

Icelandic cider takes advantage of the country’s quality apples and other fruits, producing ciders that range from sweet to dry. These ciders are a testament to Iceland’s growing craft beverage scene, providing a crisp, refreshing alternative to traditional beers and spirits.

4. Non-Alcoholic Drinks from Iceland

4.1. Cold Icelandic Non-Alcoholic Beverages

20) Soft Drinks

  • Icelandic orange soda.

Appelsín is a beloved Icelandic soft drink with a vibrant orange flavor that’s become a staple in Icelandic households. Its sweet, citrusy taste and refreshing fizz make it a favorite for all ages, embodying the joy and simplicity of Icelandic life.

Malt Extrakt
  • Traditional malt beverage.

Malt Extrakt is a unique Icelandic beverage, combining malted barley and pilsner beer extract (but non-alcoholic) to create a rich, sweet, and slightly tangy drink. Often enjoyed during the Christmas season, it’s part of Iceland’s festive traditions, offering warmth and comfort during the cold months.

21) Icelandic Spring Water

Icelandic Glacial Water
  • Pure, natural spring water.

Icelandic Glacial Water is renowned for its exceptional purity and natural filtration through volcanic lava rocks. Sourced from the pristine springs of Iceland, this water is a testament to the country’s unspoiled natural beauty, offering a crisp, clean taste that’s as refreshing as the Icelandic landscapes.

Icelandic Lemonade
  • Lemonade with natural spring water.

Icelandic Lemonade is crafted with the pure, cold waters of Iceland and freshly squeezed lemons, resulting in a refreshingly crisp drink. Often homemade or found in local cafes, this lemonade is a testament to the simplicity and purity valued in Icelandic cuisine.

4.2. Hot Icelandic Alcohol-Free Beverages

22) Icelandic Herbal Teas

Icelandic Herbal Tea is made from a variety of local herbs like Arctic thyme and birch leaves, known for their health benefits and soothing properties. These teas offer a glimpse into Iceland’s rich herbal lore, providing warmth and wellness in every cup.

Icelandic Birch Tea
  • Mild, woody flavored tea.

Icelandic Birch Tea is a gentle, soothing tea made from the leaves and twigs of the Icelandic birch tree. It offers a mild, slightly sweet flavor that reflects the purity of Iceland’s nature, ideal for relaxation and reflection.

Icelandic Moss Tea
  • Earthy, nutritious herbal tea.

Icelandic Moss Tea, brewed from the lichen found abundantly in Iceland, is valued for its healthful properties. This earthy, slightly bitter tea is a traditional remedy for various ailments, embodying the Icelandic tradition of using nature’s bounty for healing.

23) Icelandic Hot Chocolate

  • Rich, creamy chocolate drink.

Icelandic Hot Chocolate is a luxurious treat, made with high-quality Icelandic milk and rich cocoa. Known for its creaminess and depth of flavor, this hot chocolate is a comforting indulgence, perfect for warming up after a day in the crisp Icelandic air.

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