Photo: Kara Schuster
Donald K. Johnson samples the hakarl ... is he in for a surprise!
Þorrablót in Toronto equals Food, Frivolity and Frábær(ity). Frábært is an Icelandic word meaning great, and we had greatness in abundance on Saturday,
April 14, 2012 at the
Estonian Club of Toronto.
An impressive winter celebration of Icelandicness happens here, late by Þorri standards, however, we trust we make our ancestors proud with an enormity of intention and purpose that is stunning, as all great things are.
Connection to our community of over 200 people in attendance happens through food, activities and many priceless moments. A Viking Challenge feast was piped in by a bagpipe-toting-and-tooting tartan-dressed handsome young viking, Kaj Sullivan. There was such a run on Skjalfti Icelandic Beer that not a drop was left within the first hour. Also quickly gone were vínarterta, harðfiskur, smoked trout and flatkaka made available for sale, even before we had begun to eat our feast.
The feast itself was so loaded and abundant that there were audible awes and groans of appreciation, and barely a morsel was left. There was swooping engagement of the crowd in the Silent Auction. Pictures and sweaters and cookies were matched against talents and trips. Children played and, with great smiles, swung newly made swords. People popped their heads into viking cut outs for pictures and pretended at ancient royalty for a while. An Icelandic princess sold chances to win photos of ancestral farms and was swarmed by all who wanted to reconnect with their home places. Young students were awarded with scholarships. Dignitaries were honoured with the first chance to taste the Viking Challenges. The kitchen swirled with creative and energetic effort to fill and then clean every plate, pot and platter. Charming vibrant women lead the crowd in appreciations and stories, short and sweet. Many, many great moments occurred, not the least of which was the sale of the remaining roasted smirking svið (sheep’s head) in shiny new cookie tins while others were enticed to share the last bits of fragrant hákarl (shark) and well soured hrútspungar (testicle).
Here’s a list of what we ate:
Viking Challenges: hákarl, harðfiskur, hrútspungur, lifrapylsa, bloðpylsa, flatkaka, svið, Ölvisholt Brugghús Skjalfti Beer.
Icelandic Canadian Buffet: hangikjöt (smoked lamb), smoked trout, Icelandic brown bread, gravlax, poached salmon, roast lamb, turkey, salads and buns, with cakes, squares, cookies, fruit platter, kleinur, mysuostur, pönnukökur, skyr, sætsúpa and vínarterta for dessert.