When you think of classically Icelandic food, your mind—depending on who has been scaring you lately—might run to such dishes as svið or hákarl, or perhaps less frightening fare in the form of kleina and kjötsupa. I had a friend, however, who joked that people who wanted to eat the most classically Icelandic dishes should just be taken out for a hamburger (with ample Bearnaise sauce) or for a slice of pizza (with some pineapple on top).
It’s true: like Americans, Icelanders love their junk food. Candy (so much candy), pizza, soda, popcorn, hamburgers and french fries–the whole deal. And then more. And always with sauce–many, many sauces.
Today, The Grapevine draws our attention to a survey which confirms Icelanders’ love of fast food, while also breaking this love down into more specifics (I just love that a country’s particular fast food predilections is the subject of a large-scale survey, too). I would have guessed that hamburgers were most popular myself: I completely fell prey to the hamburger bug in Reykjavík and found myself craving bacon burgers almost biweekly toward the end of my stay. (Oh, Vita Bar…I miss you.) But here’s the actual breakdown, per the survey:
Pizza is the fast food of choice for Icelanders, with twice as many people saying they would opt for a slice before reaching for a hamburger.
According to new information released by Market and Media Research (MMR) 42.5% of the 973 Icelanders surveyed order pizza when they’re dining on fast food. 20.3% go for a burger; 9.4% choose Thai, Indian or Chinese food; and 6.1% would opt for sushi. 10.9% of respondents lied and said they never order fast food.
While it’s not surprising that pizza is a fan favourite, the data gets more interesting when the demographics of fast food eaters are more closely examined. Men are more likely to eat a hamburger, and women are more likely to dine on sushi. Those who support the government are more likely to order pizza than those who do not (45% versus 39.6%); they are also less likely to eat sushi than those who do not support the government (3.8% versus 7.1%).
Also worth noting: sushi is somehow a fast food. Maybe they mean those little pre-made lunch trays? Or perhaps people are just dashing into Sushi Train for a quick, albeit mesmerizing bite for lunch?