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Food from our trip to Greece Aug/Sept 2007


Della
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Greg (Adiabatic) and I just returned from our honeymoon in Greece and had a fabulous time! We ate, we drank, and we looked at ruins and swam in the blue water of the Aegean Sea. We had some really good food and some not so amazing food but we took a lot of pictures and thought we’d post about our experiences.

We arrived in Athens mid-afternoon and headed to our hotel, which was on a quiet street just off the Plaka. After getting checked in we decided to go out to get a beverage and snack and look around the Plaka. Adjacent to our hotel (Hotel Cypria) there was a little bar called “Aphrodite Bar” and we sat right down to have a beer. After flying/traveling for 16 hours we were ready for something cold. It was well over 100 degrees and we were pretty hot! We both ordered the Mythos beer (which is a lot like an Amstel IMO).

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We wandered around for a bit and decided to get a snack (which turned out to be dinner since once I got a couple of beers and some food in me I was ready for bed).

I think we made it till 8:00 PM our first night! LOL :smile:

We ate at Koouirov (sp) in the Plaka and both thought it was quite good.

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This was just a casual place and we shared tzatziki and pita, while I had the pork gyros plate

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Greg had the Grilled Octopus Salad

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Edited by Della (log)
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The next morning we stopped by Café Ermou and had a couple of cappuccino, a still warm from the oven croissant and a house made cheese pie.

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After spending the morning and early part of the afternoon checking out the Acropolis, Zeus’s Temple and the Ancient and Roman Agora’s we were starving. It was really hot and it was time to sit down. We didn’t spend much time trying to find the “perfect” place for lunch as we needed sustenance right away. Across from where we’d eaten the night before was a place called Tabena TA Rioybeteakia. It was pretty touristy but had a full crowd so we stopped there to eat.

We both had Mythos beers again. I had the greek salad and pita bread.

Greg had the braised lamb. It was really tender and he loved the flavors. It came with fries – well, actually, a lot of things come with fries so you’ll see them on many of our plates. They are just the frozen variety and mostly aren’t crispy. Sometimes they are good and sometimes not – it is pretty hit and miss as far as we can tell.

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Dinner that night was at Karyatis – again in the Plaka.

For apps we had the taramosalata (fish roe and potato spread)

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and the fava bean spread (this one is sorta blurry)

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For dinner Greg had the lamb and I had the pork souvlaki. The lamb was VERY tender! The pork was flavorful but a bit dry. Great service though and we had a good time. Note the lamb came with ketchup!

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The next day we traveled to Sifnos. Lunch was in the town of Faros at a taverna called Meltemi that is right on the beach. Beers again of course! We drank a ton of beer!

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I had greek salad, Greg had the roasted eggplant stuffed with cheese and covered with a tomato sauce. It was really good! The eggplant was really flavorful, the cheese mild and fresh tasting and the tomato sauce light and clean. You can see the tzatziki in the corner of the picture. The tzatziki was very thick and really garlic-y. Yum!

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My greek salad was really good too. Every time I ordered one it was a little different – the cheese might be more or less salty or tangy, they might add peppers or not have them. Olive oil is different from restaurant to restaurant and island to island. And I think it is the perfect lunch when it’s 100 degrees!

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Dinner that night was at a fish house/taverna in Faros. We didn’t get the name of the place but there are just a couple of restaurants in Faros so if you find yourself there, it is the taverna that is “up the stairs” next to the ones directly on the beach.

We started with the house white wine and the house green salad. Typically, the house green salad will be whatever “horta” or greens they have fresh that day, sautéed in olive oil and served with a lemon squeeze.

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Greg had the grilled octopus. The octopus legs were just hanging on a rope near the grill and they’d just pick one, throw it on the grill and once it was cooked drizzle some olive oil and lemon on it, slice and serve. Very tasty! I had the grilled shrimp but we didn't get a good picture of them.

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For dinner one night in Appolonia on Sifnos we started with a Cretan Salad which is a lot like a greek salad but slightly different. On the bottom of the bowl there is a barley husk, then the vegetables (cucumber, tomato, red onion, green and red peppers and capers) all drizzled with olive oil and I think balsamic vinegar. Then a huge serving of a creamy mizithria cheese tops the whole thing. Sesame covered bread sticks are stuck in the four “corners’ of the bowl – and voila!

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For dinner Greg had the slow roasted lamb served with mustard on the side and it came with fries. His lamb was very dry and not very good.

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I had the Byzantine meatballs with yogurt-braised leeks. It came with some cheesy mashed potatoes for a side. The potatoes tasted like they had some smoky cheese in them but I never found out what it was. The meatballs were pan-fried ground meat and had a really good flavor. Full of spices and they were definitely cooked medium-rare so and were tender and tasty. The yogurt-braised leeks were good but a mystery to us. If anyone knows the technique, please chime in! They were served on the side and it looked like they were sitting in a sauce or stock –but it was crunchy and sweet! I have no idea what they did but it was basically served cold which I assume needed to be that way so the sauce could be crunchy. Oh, and the meatballs were sitting on a slice of bread too.

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One of our favorite places to eat in Appolonia was a cute taverna/cafe that is on the edge of town right where the bus comes to take you to Faros. We aren't sure how to say the name of this place but here is a picuture ~ If you find your self on Sifnos, you should definately stop by for lunch! :smile:

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We ate there twice and both times I had the carbonara. It reminded me a bit of what my mom used to make and call carbonara when I was growing up. It had cheese, bacon, CANNED mushrooms and fresh crème. Sounds odd with canned mushrooms but it was pretty darn good!

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One day Greg had the “Chefs Crepe” which had cheese, bacon, mushrooms and fresh crème.

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And then the next day he tried the “greek crepe” which had feta, tomato, hard cooked egg, cheese and olives.

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Thanks for reporting, Della. I have not yet been to Greece though I would very much love to go.

Were the meatballs lamb?

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From Sifnos we headed to the Island of Santorini where we stayed in Oia.

Our first meal in Oia was at a restaurant called Strogili. Great view, great service, really good food! We meant to go back for dinner one night but never made it. One dish they serve at dinner but not lunch is a pork braised in beer and honey. If I get back to Oia again I'll definately go and try it!

At Strogili we had the best dolmades of the trip. They were warm, lemony and the rice inside was soft but it each piece was seperate. Sometimes it is all "mushed" together but this wasn't - I'll probably judge all dolmades by these from now on! :biggrin:

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We both had the souvlaki for lunch - Greg chicken and me pork.

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Thanks for reporting, Della. I have not yet been to Greece though I would very much love to go.

Were the meatballs lamb?

Yes, they were lamb. I wish I knew what spices were in them though! They were really flavorful. Not what I'd expect out of a fried patty of meat. :smile:

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We stopped one day at Kamari beach and had some appetizers. There is a long strip of out-door restaurants along the beach and we choose the one we ate at by their chairs! We were looking for the comfortable blue ones! LOL It was called "Hook Bar" - like Captain Hook. They had a pirate picture on the menu and the wall.

We had dolmades, tzatziki with bread, fried cheese (yum!) and their version of the meatball.

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We walked to Fira one morning from Oia (12 KM) and once we arrived we headed straight to "Tropical" bar. April from Toronto is the day bartender and she is great.

We had some fruity drinks and rested up from being in the sun!

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Once we cooled down we walked up the stairs to Poldo for some gyros. Poldo is near what I would call one of the "main" places to descend into Fira. If you aren't staying in Fira and take a bus there, you will be let off just a block or two from Poldo. If you go by we definately suggest stopping! They have pork, lamb and chicken gyros as well as falafel and a variety of cold salads. And Mythos beer of course!

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One place we recommend for breakfast and lunch is Skiza in Oia. Skiza means "dried wood" and can also also refers to a dry husk of bread. We stopped in for breakfast one morning. We had yogurt with honey and a leek tart (room temp). Greg had a latte and I had a frappe (iced coffee). The view was beautiful and the cafe really cute. The proprietor of our hotel (The Ether Traditional House) told us they have the best pizza in all of Oia.

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We ended up stopping by a little bar in Oia called Meteor most nights before dinner. The shot we have here is a little blurry (maybe I was drinking ouzo!!! LOL) but across from this building which is the bar is a little open air half walled on 2 sides patio with cushioned benches and lots of candles. They always bring a little dish of nuts or chips or something with your cocktails and it's a nice way to spend an hour before dinner. If are are in Oia we really suggest stopping in! The blond woman in the picture was our cocktails waitress every night.

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Dinner one night was at Neptune in Oia. We started out with zuccinni fritters (no picture) that were mixed with onions, parsley, egg and feta. Greg had the stuffed calamari. It was stuffed with herbs, cheese and green onions and then grilled. Greg really liked it. We both thought this restaurant was a hit.

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I had the fried shrimp with garlic sauce. They take the whole shrimp, lightly fry (not sure if in a pan with oil or a deep fryer but no coating - it just cooks the shrimp) and then cover it with a garlic sauce - big pieces of garlic in a very light sauce. Delicious!! The picture is a little dark but hopefully you can see what I mean.

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Della! Thank you. This is perfect. I am now adding to my "list". Did you get a chance to go to Ambroisa or 1800? I am wondering if it is "worth it" to pay a premium, when a lot of the other less "popular" restaurants seem incredible.

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One of the most spectacular dinners we had was at the Port of Amoundi just below Oia. Here is a picture of the port. It is small but beautiful. It is lined with restaurants and is quite a destination place for dinner. The sunsets is amazing too!

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We ate at the "Sunset in Amoundi Taverna". After a glass of ouzo we started with stuffed peppers. The peppers were much like an anaheim pepper but I wasn't 100% sure. We loved them - very simple but good.

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For dinner we shared "fish for two" - Grouper, Swordfish, Scorpian, and something similar to Sea Bream - schrosher or something like that......I didn't get a firm name on the 4th fish. It was served with some herbed olive oil on the side (oregano and lemon) to pour over the fish. Very fresh and very delicious!

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Here is the grill where they cooked our fish.

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And here is the swordfish we ate - note the hacksaw!!

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Della!  Thank you.  This is perfect.  I am now adding to my "list".  Did you get a chance to go to Ambroisa or 1800?  I am wondering if it is "worth it" to pay a premium, when a lot of the other less "popular" restaurants seem incredible.

We did not get to either Ambrosia or 1800. We did check out 1800 as it was recommended in both guide books and through "word of mouth". The menu looked really nice and the restaurant itself was really pretty. We just were in a pretty "relaxed" mode of travel and to be honest, after a full day of sight-seeing, drinking and sometimes napping, we really just felt like stopping by Meteor for a drink and then finding something casual for dinner......then going for a couple more drinks on the way back to out hotel! :smile: 1800 seemed a bit formal for our mindset.

So, after all this rambling, I guess we decided we didn't want to have a "formal" dinner experience.

I think you will be able to check out the restaurant and make a decision once you are in Oia. Be sure to let me know if you end up eating there!

Edited by Della (log)
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After a wonderful time in Santorini we headed off to Mykonos. We were there for just a couple of nights and had breakfast at our hotel both mornings. Yogurt, breads, coffee, OJ that was very "tang"-like along with some scrambled and over easy eggs held in chafers and cold cuts.

On our first afternoon in Mykonos we needed a snack and wandered into Paraportiani which is in the middle of a large square in the town. There are a couple of LARGE pelicans on the island that hang out in the town. Here is a picture of one in the kitchen of this restaurant. There was also a dog in the kitchen with the pelican but we didn't get a picture. :rolleyes:

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Our snack was Mythos beer and "appetizers for two" off the menu. It consisted of spanikopita, tyropita, saganaki (the fried cheese I love so much), zucchinni croquettes and cheese croquettes along with the typical "bread" that is served with each meal that you are charged anywhere from .50 - 1.00 per person.

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Our first night (of two) we ate at the "Opa Taverna". It had good music, lots of "twinkle lights" and a good vibe. We just wandered around the little town and picked it out. Mykonos has tons of Italian restaurants - in fact we saw lots of pasta everywhere but Mykonos especially out of the places we went featured lots of pasta. We didn't really want to go that route so we sought out a taverna that didn't feature pasta.

We started with the "Giant Beans in Tomato". Very simple dish but really good. One thing we really learned is that whatever the menu says is the dish - is the dish. There aren't a lot of extra ingrediants or garnished. Thus, - beans in tomato ARE beans in tomato. I could have eaten this every day!

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Greg had the calamari - it was fried like we have here.....very tender!

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I had the pork "gyros" plate. You can probably see a trend in my eating but I really just LOVE the pork gyros meat......tender, crispy on the outside - I could eat it every day.

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That is really it for our Mykonos food. We spent one day at Paradise Beach and ate at one of the restaurants on the beach - beers and gyros. The other day we went to the Island of Delos and ended up eating at one of the waterside restaurants once we got back to Mykonos. Pretty touristy but not a lot is open for lunch so we took what we could get. The beers were $6.80 euros on the water rather than the $2.80 euro we usually spent. We didn't really have any really exciting meals on Mykonos but I'm sure there are restaurants we just didn't know about.

We did spend our 2nd evening having cocktails for a couple hours at "Rhapsody Bar" and had a great time. There is a great girl name Aleisha from Australia working behind the bar........if you go there say "hi" for us and ask her what parties are happening on the island........if anyone will know.....she will!!! :biggrin:

Edited by Della (log)
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  • 1 month later...

the enthusiasm of this report is all the money!

just a few points for your future visit!

try the greek white wine produced from a grape called "asyrtico"

it has good body, high acidity and goes perfectly with most of the food you had

beer is ok, but with this white wine, I am sure you would be eaually - if not more - satisfied

on another poit, meatballs in greece are always prepared with pork or a mix of pork and beef (it depends on the restaurant - taverna

athinaeos

civilization is an everyday affair

the situation is hopeless, but not very serious

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  • 5 months later...

Thanks for this thread -- I will be going on a cruise in a few weeks, going through Greece, and I needed some tips. It certainly seems as if you winged it a bit and still found some great food (which is what I prefer to do).

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I'm in Atlanta -- you are in Europe, so you have no excuse! :)

I have a one-day stop in Reading to meet some distant family for the first time. I'm very concerned about eating English food with older people. I'm certainly not going to have any ethnic food, I bet, but maybe that will just whet my appetite.

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