The Lebowski Bar


A couple of weeks ago, I was enjoying a drink at my former neighborhood bar, Aero Club, with my best friend Bonnie when I pointed out a postcard taped up on the fridge. It was a postcard that Ryan and I had sent to Aero during our trip to Iceland. Because who doesn't send their favorite bar postcards every time they travel?

On the front was a picture of His Dudeness and the logo for The Lebowski Bar, a Big Lebowski-themed bar in Reykjavik that Ryan and I frequented during our stay. Apparently I had never told Bonnie about this bar and it was then that I realized I never blogged about it either.

I decided I needed to do something about this glaring omission because... well... you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.

More importantly? Because The Lebowski Bar is a pretty wonderful addition to any Icelandic itinerary.

Not that it's a secret... during all of my extensive research pre-Iceland, several Icelandic bloggers like Tiny Iceland listed The Lebowski Bar as a local fave. What was a secret, to me at least, was that it also happened to be three blocks down the street from our AirBnB.

On our very first night in Iceland, after returning from our tour of the Golden Circle with Reykjavik Excursions, we started wandering the street looking for a place to grab a quick dinner. That's when I saw the neon glow of the Lebowski Bar sign and realized just how close we were to one of my Iceland must-see's.

During our first night there, we got a table in the main room and ordered a couple of beers. Not long after we sat down two large projector screens rolled down on the wall across from us and the attention of most diners was redirected as a soccer game came on.

Oh, those Europeans and their soccer.

We decided to play it safe and just ordered personal pizzas and beers.

While there's good pizza and not so good pizza, prior to this moment I honestly didn't think that there was any such thing as bad pizza.

I was wrong.

But you don't go to The Lebowski Bar for pizza, silly tourist! You don't go for food at all! You go because this is a Big Lebowski-themed establishment and how awesome is that?

More importantly! You go because there is a White Russian Menu with over 20 options.

We didn't order any White Russians that night: we were exhausted and cold. After our dinner, it was time for bed.

But sure enough, we ended up back there the next night and got our Dude on.

The following day we had our first encounter with this crazy Icelandic weather I'd been hearing about. A sudden blizzard restricted us to Reykjavik for the day and as any self-respecting snow dweller knows, the only way to spend a snow day is by getting drunk.

We spent most of the day exploring the city and then holed up in a Celtic bar making friends. But on our way home, we headed into The Lebowski Bar because White Russians are the world's most perfect nightcap.

Despite White Russians being our entire reason for heading back to The Lebowski, when we got to the bar we were still finishing our dinner of Cool Ranch Doritos. Yup, I'd rather eat a bag of chips than order more Icelandic food.

Fun fact: In Iceland, they're known as Cool American Doritos.

Since Doritos didn't exactly sound appetizing with White Russians, I asked the bartender if had any local brews available. He did, and I drank an IPA, the name of which I couldn't pronounce, but the flavor of which I enjoyed immensely.

We also took this opportunity to continue a game we'd learned about earlier in the day called "Three Degrees of Bjork" (the name is ours). Apparently all Icelandic residents are three degrees of separation from the famous musician. Our bartender was no exception: his mom was a teacher who had had Bjork's brother in class.

Afterwards, I headed down to the restrooms and was horrified to find a Steve Buscemi cartoon staring at me while I peed. Is there any creepier place to be alone with a Steve Buscemi rendition?

Then, finally, after consuming every last Dorito, it was time for a delicious White Russian... or three.

While I can't tell you which ones I ordered, I can tell you they were all delicious. And we enjoyed great company from other travelers and Icelandic locals alike. All in all, I'd encourage anyone to stop by for a White Russian during their stay in Reykjavik, dude.

The Lebowski Bar
Laugavegur 20a
Reykjavik, Iceland