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And this is how we know it’s no longer 2007

EPI and I went out to Hagkaup [supermarket] this evening to buy lemons. They were out of stock.

Bónus was out of stock too, last weekend.

Imagine that! Being out of freaking lemons.

Anyway, since we were there, we decided to see if they had any Pataks Hot Lime Pickle in stock yet.

Because they haven’t had it in, like, months.

And while Pataks Hot Lime Pickle is one of those things that I can certainly live without, it is also one of those things that just gives that little bit of added flavour to life. You know?

As usual, the shelf was empty of Hot Lime Pickle.

YT: That’s it. I’m going to ask someone if they’re ever planning to stock that stuff again.

[See YT march over to the nearest clerk. See YT ask clerk. See clerk saunter over to shelf.]

CLERK: You mean this stuff? [No.] This stuff? [No.] Well, then we don’t stock it any more.

YT: Just … like, no more?

CLERK: No. Since the start of the kreppa hit we’ve stopped ordering loads of products. We only stock the most popular products now.

I refrained from asking her whether lemons were considered popular.

Anyway, according to the IMF [sez Eyjan] the kreppa is now “technically” over, since we’ve had economic growth for two quarters in a row.

I’ll believe it when they get the Hot Pickle back in stock.

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  • Alexander E. June 28, 2010, 11:56 pm

    Well, I had lived through a couple of real kreppa so this is my indicator of it – when bananas are out of stock!
    PS. Seriously – no milk, no fuel for cars and bread only for a few hours. So IMF might be right this time :))))

  • hildigunnur June 29, 2010, 12:07 am

    yeah, it’s been hard to get lemons, weird but true tons of mangos and kiwis and various types of apples, all sorts of things but lemons… The ones in Krónan have been really old and bad looking too.

  • hildigunnur June 29, 2010, 12:08 am

    yeah and you might be able to order the hot lime pickle from Amazon – I ordered some food stuff via ShopUSA last year. Expensive, though…

  • Hilda June 29, 2010, 12:10 am

    I had the same thing happen today and yesterday, apparently lemons are not available in Iceland right now. But when life gives you no lemons you use lime instead.

  • alda June 29, 2010, 12:10 am

    Wouldn’t it arrive all broken and stuff?

    Anyway, this post has been up for all of 20 minutes, and already one reader (Tom) has offered to bring me some. Isn’t t’internet a beautiful thing? *sniff*

  • Hilda June 29, 2010, 12:12 am

    This Alexander seems to be making fun of the big lemon crisis of 2010 🙂

  • alda June 29, 2010, 12:16 am

    Oops, Hilda and I cross-posted, my comment was meant for Hildigunnur. 🙂

    As for lime — indeed, that’s what I’ve been doing, but it doesn’t cut it in every case. I’ve got this horrendous summer cold going on and desperately need to make me some ginger and lemon tea. Ginger and lime … not quite the same. 🙁

  • JB in San Diego June 29, 2010, 12:23 am

    I wish I could send you some lemons. We have a tree full of them in the back yard as I type. The world is small, but not that small.

    When and if they are back in stock, zest them and spread the zest in a single layer on a baking sheet on the counter for about 3 days to dry them out, then put the dried zest in a jar for lemon flavor later. Then juice the lemons and freeze the juice in ice cube trays for emergencies.

  • Lissa June 29, 2010, 12:37 am

    When I came home from a year in India, the thing I missed the most was mango pickle. It was 15 years before I found any again.

    The lime pickle is very nice, too.

  • alda June 29, 2010, 12:37 am

    JB – could you email them to me?

  • jen June 29, 2010, 12:58 am

    We just bought Pataks Hot Lime Pickle from Melabúðin today and they have a whole bunch of it in stock. No idea if they had lemons though!

  • alda June 29, 2010, 1:04 am

    OMG Jen that is excellent news! Now just … shhhh, don’t tell anyone until I can get there tomorrow. ps. that’ll be me camping out on the sidewalk tonight. 🙂

  • Chris June 29, 2010, 1:10 am

    And thats not the only things, which are not available. Try to get Ricotta or frozen herbs. Impossible since months. I saw quite a number of glasses from Patak at Hagkaup at Holtagardar last weekend.

  • JB in San Diego June 29, 2010, 1:57 am

    No problem, if your email can handle attachments that have a lot of mega-bites. They are large lemons.

  • Daniel Harðarson June 29, 2010, 4:48 am

    Just picked up some Pataks Lime Pickle at Melabúðin this afternoon actually, they are well stocked with heaps of exotica 🙂 think i also saw some in the Bonus at Holtagarður the other day too.

    Handy hint,a thin spread of lime pickle on a nice cracker with a slice of cheese is a great snack 🙂

    Do steer well clear of the Pataks sweet mango chutney however, it’s horrible, try the other brands (sharwoods et al) 🙂

  • Barry June 29, 2010, 5:27 am

    “Vietnam Market”, Suðurlandsbraut 6 had both Patak’s Lime Pickle ad Hot Lime Pickle a few weeks ago …

  • kevin oconnor,waterford ireland June 29, 2010, 6:49 am

    Reykjavik fresh out of fresh lemons, I’ve heard of banana republics but this is ridiculous, perhaps you should have asked him for some sour grapes instead ha ha. Yes lets face it Icelanders the days of caviar,champagne and the finest imported delicacies such as lemons for instance are well and truly over. time to dust off those rotting sharks head recipes.

  • kevin oconnor,waterford ireland June 29, 2010, 7:30 am

    Thank god you were just going there to get lemons you would not want be buying pesto 813 kr for 190g at current exchange €5 yikes, I get that for €1.50 at Aldi clearly some work needed to be done comrade citizens, bearing in mind that I live in Rip-Off-Ireland 40 shades of greed, still swings and roundabouts your rentals for 100,000 kr a month eclipse in quality the Irish hovels we get for €600 per month as I have seen on the MBL website.

  • jpeeps June 29, 2010, 10:08 am

    Ginger and lime?? Ooooh not so bad. the Moscow Mule is my invalid’s cocktail of choice: half a lime, a generous slug of vodka, an even more generous slug of ginger beer, on ice. Mmm – particularly good for sore throats.

  • ECS June 29, 2010, 10:36 am

    I was in italy a few weeks ago and admit to filling the cracks in my suitcase with lemons from the trees at our guesthouse.

    but I haven’t noticed an absence of lemons in Iceland- Krónan at Grandi seems to usually have them.

  • alda June 29, 2010, 10:39 am

    Thank you, everyone!! I’m beginning to think the situation is not quite as dire as I had thought. Pataks in Melabúðin, lemons in Krónan [however inadequate … as long as they’re sour I guess I’m happy]. 🙂

  • Michael Lewis June 29, 2010, 10:40 am

    Reading that, I couldn’t help but think of this
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yes!_We_Have_No_Bananas

  • Alexander E. June 29, 2010, 10:56 am

    Alda.
    Maybe you should run a kind of messages board – “What store still has it!” as well as “What should I bring with me to Iceland for IWR readers?” :)))
    BTW. It’s easy to grow lemons inside (like flowers).

  • Michael Schulz June 29, 2010, 1:40 pm

    While lemons are still available here and there (as I saw last Saturday) the truth is that choices in all supermarkets (but also hardware items at Byko or wine and beers at Vinbudins, etc., etc.) are shrinking. They are filling more and more shelfspace with the same item and cheaper, presumably less quality. Quality and choice in vegetable or fruits is by and large poor. True, some itms are not available at all. When asking I was asked back: haven’t you heard of Kreppa!?
    Cheers,
    Michael
    Michael

  • SOe June 29, 2010, 3:12 pm

    In Summer 2006, I could not get ONIONS. Went to 10 shops and NONE!!!

  • kevin oconnor,waterford ireland June 29, 2010, 3:31 pm

    Never mind pickles you are getting famous Alda your book has been reviewed

    http://www.icelandreview.com/icelandreview/reviews/?cat_id=16567&ew_0_a_id=363638

    By Alana Odegard noneless who hails from where you used to live, do you belong to a secret Canadian-Icelandic- freemason – journalist-mafia type sub cult by any chance or is it pure coincidence.

  • ECS June 29, 2010, 4:36 pm

    I love Alexander E’s idea, especially when it comes to herbs. I went to 4 stores yesterday trying to find cilantro. I’ve been trying to grow my own herbs so this doesn’t happen but cilantro seems to be a tricky one.

    and now I want to grow lemons. I wonder if they’d survive without a gro-light in the winter.

  • sylvia hikins June 29, 2010, 8:28 pm

    I’ve made a note in my diary. I will bring you a big jar of Petaks Hot Lime Pickle when I return to Reykjavik in November…..hope you can wait that long!!!
    sylvia from viking wirral that is awash with Hot Lime Pickle.

  • alda June 29, 2010, 8:38 pm

    Thanks Sylvia, but it does look like there is some still left in the country. But maybe not in November. 🙂

  • hildigunnur June 29, 2010, 9:06 pm

    Nope, they wouldn’t arrive broken – properly packed and everything 😀 But easier and definitely cheaper to get them from Melabúðin, which by the way rocks!

    I wanted to order some wine from Berry Bros & Rudd, my favourite wine merchant in London. THAT was expensive to send overseas! Almost cheaper to buy a ticket to London, take the tube to Berry Bros, buy the wine, back to airport and home. Plus pay the tax…

  • Joerg June 29, 2010, 11:15 pm

    Well, today I have seen lemons galore in a Bonus supermarket – impeccable large yellow fruits. I should add, that it was a Bonus on Faeroe Island, so, not right around the corner.

    I suspect, you have just uncovered a great conspiracy. I’m sure, the EU is to blame, because they are secretly preventing lemons from arriving in Icelandic supermarkets. It’s definitely just the beginning. Iceland must surrender or they’ll soon block bananas, too. 😉

  • Chris, Reykjavik June 30, 2010, 12:31 pm

    @Joerg: No problem, bananas are already grown in a greenhouse in Hveragerdi. They will surely stock up production then.