There is a restaurant so surreal in photos, that it looks like it’s the work of AI. But in this case, the reality is better than anything you can dream up. Set in the middle of the Norwegian fjords, this spaceship-like structure is one of the coolest new restaurants in the world. And they’re creating food that is pushing every boundary.
There are some restaurants that push boundaries, but we would go so far as to say Iris The Restaurant is trying to break the border. Iris is a restaurant in the fjords of Norway. No, it’s not a restaurant on the shore, and not on a boat or a dock. Instead, Iris is set right in the darned middle of the fjords, and only accessible by boat. Hence their “expedition dining” concept. Quite frankly how they even built this place is already pretty impressive for this unique restaurant in the fjords.
We thought we’d seen everything, but we have to hand it to the guys at Iris. First, you must be wondering how you get to this restaurant in the fjords; the Hardanger fjords, to be exact. Well, the beginning of your trip starts at the coastal town of Rosendal where you pick up their expedition boat. En route to Iris, there’s a stop at chef Anika Madsen’s boathouse on the island of Snilstveitøy, to whet the appetite with a snack. It also sets the tone for the evening that this is not your typical tasting menu restaurant.
From Snilstveitøy, you journey to the mothership, which literally looks like a spaceship on another planet. In a way, it kind of is, but instead, it’s what they refer to as the floating art installation of the Salmon Eye. To welcome you, there’s what they describe as a multisensory underwater experience before you’re welcomed into the dining room. As you would expect from a restaurant in the fjords of Norway, the views almost make you not care what they’re cooking up.
If you are a meat and potatoes, selective eater, Iris may not be for you. You’re also pretty much out of luck if you’re a vegan, or vegetarian and don’t eat seafood or fish. However, if you’re adventurous, they are cooking up some funky stuff at this restaurant in the fjords. Honestly, we don’t know what half these ingredients are, but some dishes are sourced within 500 meters of Iris. A dish like juniper-smoked blue mussels, beach crab bouillon, and blanched rockweed can find their way to your plate.
Surprisingly for the experience of Iris, it’s relatively reasonable. The tasting menu sans wine runs 3200 NOK, which is about $300 USD. If you make it to Iris, message us at [email protected] as this one is on our list to try too.