Compared to Reykjavik Roasters, the subject of Monday’s Coffee Spot, who have been around since 2008, today’s Coffee Spot, Mikki Refur, is a comparative newcomer, having only opened in November 2020. It’s also quite different from the rest of Reykjavik’s speciality coffee scene, in that it combines wine and coffee (which, to be fair, is pretty common outside of speciality, with Reykjavik offering multiple wine/coffee bars). However, just as it offers some pretty special coffee, Mikki Refur has similar taste in wine, stocking the produce of a select group of small, organic vineyards.
Talking of coffee, the other difference is that Mikki Refur doesn’t roast its own coffee, instead serving a small range of seasonal single-origins from local roaster, Kvörn, one of which is available as espresso, with another on batch brew using the ever-reliable Moccamaster. If you’re hungry, there are compact breakfast (to 11:30) and lunch (11:30 to 15:00) menus, with bar snacks and small plates the rest of the way, along with a small selection of croissants and pain au chocolat.
In terms of atmosphere, Mikki Refur is very much a coffee shop until mid-afternoon, after which is slowly transforms into a wine bar until closing.
You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.
Mikki Refur, which was recommended by the staff at Reykjavik Roasters, Ásmundarsalur, is on Hverfisgata, opposite The National Theatre of Iceland and, conveniently, around the corner from our hotel, so Amanda and I popped by for breakfast the following morning, returning for a quick post-volcano hike coffee two days later.
Mikki Refur is located on ground floor of a handsome two-storey building, which it shares with Norr11, a design and furniture store, while upstairs are various offices, including a wine importer (which owns Mikki Refur). With a pleasing display of symmetry, two broad, stone steps lead up to a central door which in turn opens onto a spacious lobby, accessed via a further four steps. At the top, doors open to the left (Norr11) and right (Mikki Refur), while directly ahead stairs lead to the offices upstairs.
Mikki Refur occupies exactly half the ground floor, wrapping itself around the stairwell in a reverse C shape (or a closed square bracket, ], if you prefer). The front is dominated by the amazing, tiled counter, which faces the windows along Hverfisgata. The door brings you into the back, left-hand corner, where you’ll find a narrow, two-person bar against the back wall next to the counter. Moving around, you pass a two-person wing-backed sofa with a low coffee table on your way to the front of the counter, where you order and pay.
There are two large, square, floor-to-ceiling windows at the front, with another two-person bar against in the wall between the windows. Carrying on, Mikki Refur runs down past the counter on the right. There are three bar stools against the counter on this side, while a bench runs along the right-hand wall with a pair of round tables. A broader, three-person bar follows, under a wide mirror opposite the end of the counter, then there are four more round tables under a pair of windows at the back of the right-hand wall.
You’re now at the back of Mikki Refur, which continues to the left. There’s another two-person bar against the back wall, followed by a door which leads to the kitchen, after which there’s a final two-person bar. If you carry on, an open doorway leads into a gorgeous lounge-like room of tables and sofas, but before you get too excited, it’s part of Norr11, so best not to take your coffee in there!
However, I’ve since discovered that if you turn right, you’ll come to the back door, where a terrace runs along the back or Norr11. There’s a long, thin table with benches out here, while a ramp leads down to the car park at the back, where you’ll find a further two picnic-style tables.
Returning to the counter, you’ll find retail bags of coffee from local roaster, Kvörn, on the left-hand end, next to the espresso machine, while there’s a menu on the wall to the left, with a more detailed printed menu on the counter (all in Icelandic with no English translation). The current coffee choices (one espresso, one filter) change every two to three weeks, and are displayed on the menu on the wall. During our visit, these were two washed coffees, a Colombian (espresso) and an Ethiopian (filter).
Although we went for breakfast, we arrived just after 11:30, ordering from the lunch menu. Amanda had a grilled cheese sandwich, while I had (smashed) avocado on (sourdough) toast. Both were excellent, with my (single) slice of crunchy sourdough toast being loaded with avocado and salad.
We paired this with a flat white each, our coffees lovely, creamy and rich. The Colombian went really well with the milk, producing a well-balanced flat white with classic chocolate notes, the best ones we’d had up to that point of the trip.
|HVERFISGATA 18 • 101 REYKJAVIK • ICELAND|
|Monday||08:30 – 23:00||Roaster||Kvörn (espresso + batch brew)|
|Tuesday||08:30 – 23:00||Seating||Tables, Counter, Bar, Sofa|
|Wednesday||08:30 – 00:00||Food||Breakfast, Lunch, Bar Food, Cake|
|Thursday||08:30 – 00:00||Service||Order at Counter|
|Friday||08:30 – 00:00||Payment||Cards + Cash|
|Saturday||12:00 – 00:00||Wifi||No|
|Sunday||12:00 – 23:00||Power||Yes|
|Chain||No||Visits||26th, 28th July 2021|
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