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Greek Food in Vancouver (merged)


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Went to Pasparos at 3rd and Lonsdale tonight. It's been way too many years since the last visit. Definitely worth a trip to North Van if you've been looking for good Greek food! We split a platter for two - roast lamb was falling off the bone and delicious, nice tender calamari, plus moussaka, dolmathes, spanakopita, tzatziki and the regular veggies, rice potatoes. Two big plates. Great flavours, great value.

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We've often decried the fact that Greek food doesn't enjoy any provenance in Vancouver. Certainly not compared to Montreal, New York, or London.

There are reasons for that. Many are like immigration centres, quietly passing from hand-to-hand. Even when they were at their zenith, in the 70s on West Broadway, it was clear that the proprietors' kids, who worked for tips, would be looking elsewhere for a career.

In the 80s I took a menu from one Greek restuarant up and down West Broadway, and ordered from it with complete confidence at half a dozen others. The green bell pepper (the Lindsay Lohan of the pepper family) figured large. Along with cheap starch and mystery meats. No one I knew actually ate at Orestes.

We removed the 'Best Greek' category from the Restaurant Awards some years ago - it is now lumped in with 'European' but rarely do Greek restaurants get much mention. The best Greek food, alas, is prepared in people's homes, and the best of that happens during Greek Easter.

I was reminded of all of this when I had a diabollically bad meal at a place called Kerkis on West 4th Avenue. It was a proforma shambles (stuff I would have greedily eaten when a student perhaps) and, unfortunately, confirmed my worst fears about a dying cuisine here.

Yours until bottarga flakes fall from the sky, etc.

J.

from the thinly veneered desk of:

Jamie Maw

Food Editor

Vancouver magazine

www.vancouvermagazine.com

Foodblog: In the Belly of the Feast - Eating BC

"Profumo profondo della mia carne"

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Interesting.  I feel like that's happened with Greek food in quite a few cities. 

I just can't get my head around that Lindsay Lohan comparison.  Would you mind clearing that up for me?

Why green bell peppers = Lindsay Loha

Empty and vacuous. Takes up valuable room for no apparent reason other than to annoy. Requires a life, etc. I would have used Paris, but the kitchen's her second worst room.

Edited by jamiemaw (log)

from the thinly veneered desk of:

Jamie Maw

Food Editor

Vancouver magazine

www.vancouvermagazine.com

Foodblog: In the Belly of the Feast - Eating BC

"Profumo profondo della mia carne"

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Wow, there's a blast from the past.

One of the best New Year's Eve's I've ever

spent was at Orestes. At midnight the waiters

were dancing on the tables and hurling plates to

the floor. The All-Star Band made up of Powder Blues,

Loverboy, Chilliwack and a couple others I can't remember, played

all night. The BCTV news team came in and filmed

it all. It made the news next night as one of the

rockin'-est New Year's in town. Oddly, I can't recall the

food (maybe it was me throwing the plates on the floor...)

I recall doing the same thing with the menu up and down the

street, trying to find a restaurant that deviated from the same

mimeographed menu with no luck. That was in Athens.

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Interesting.  I feel like that's happened with Greek food in quite a few cities. 

I just can't get my head around that Lindsay Lohan comparison.  Would you mind clearing that up for me?

Why green bell peppers = Lindsay Loha

Empty and vacuous. Takes up valuable room for no apparent reason other than to annoy. Requires a life, etc. I would have used Paris, but the kitchen's her second worst room.

Oh, I see. Now personally, I would have gone with someone like Kevin Federline, in that he always seems to be around but he never really does anything or serves any purpose. Whereas Lohan at least provides some excitement (unlike green bell peppers) in that she often manages to one-up her previous antics.

Edited by eatvancouver (log)

Jason

Editor

EatVancouver.net

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Interesting.  I feel like that's happened with Greek food in quite a few cities. 

I just can't get my head around that Lindsay Lohan comparison.  Would you mind clearing that up for me?

Why green bell peppers = Lindsay Loha

Empty and vacuous. Takes up valuable room for no apparent reason other than to annoy. Requires a life, etc. I would have used Paris, but the kitchen's her second worst room.

Oh, I see. Now personally, I would have gone with someone like Kevin Federline, in that he always seems to be around but he never really does anything or serves any purpose. Whereas Lohan at least provides some excitement (unlike green bell peppers) in that she often manages to one-up her previous antics.

You must be referring to her skirt.

from the thinly veneered desk of:

Jamie Maw

Food Editor

Vancouver magazine

www.vancouvermagazine.com

Foodblog: In the Belly of the Feast - Eating BC

"Profumo profondo della mia carne"

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makanmakan:

Your comment about the Costa Del Sol reminds me of honeymooning in Portugal.  Part of the time we were in Lagos in the Algarve.  I can still "smell" those sardines being grilled streetside just off the wharf in little hibatchi's.  Served just as described.

Ahhh, yes. If you wish to relive that, hit the parking lot of the Our Lady of Fatima Church (Between Clark & Commercial on 13th Ave) during a festival weekend. Or the Portuguese Srs Centre off Kingway & Imperial when they have something going on then too.

One Portuguese place that Mr. Maw has recommended is on Commercial ST. (not Dr.!), the name escapes me now. Hopefully someone can post the name here. I'm sure they can do grilled sardinhas just as well as the Algaviros...

My wife and I are heading out to celebrate a friend's 50th birthday so our first night will be at the Atlantic Trap and Grill in Yaletown.  Not my choice but a bunch of us used to live in the Maritimes before heading West in search of fame and fortune...they did...I got debt [smile]....it should be a good "shaker" ..."some good" as they would say [grin]

....

Yeah! Great choice for a good group hangout. First place that comes to mind for cheap beer, good music, and lots of friends.

AS for this thread, I'd recommend Taki's over Stepho's. I wish Orestes would come back. That place was awesome.

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One Portuguese place that Mr. Maw has recommended is on Commercial ST. (not Dr.!), the name escapes me now.  Hopefully someone can post the name here. I'm sure they can do grilled sardinhas just as well as the Algaviros...

That'd be Casa Verde, a casual family-run restaurant located at 3532 Commercial Street (604-876-7647). Note that it's cash only. Among their notable dishes are lulas grelhadas (squid pan fried in olive oil, garlic and lemon juice), frango no churrasco (barbecued piri-piri chicken, available on weekends only) and batatas a rodelas ("dollar-cut" chips, some of the best damn fries in Vancouver).

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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One Portuguese place that Mr. Maw has recommended is on Commercial ST. (not Dr.!), the name escapes me now.  Hopefully someone can post the name here. I'm sure they can do grilled sardinhas just as well as the Algaviros...

That'd be Casa Verde, a casual family-run restaurant located at 3532 Commercial Street (604-876-7647). Note that it's cash only. Among their notable dishes are lulas grelhadas (squid pan fried in olive oil, garlic and lemon juice), frango no churrasco (barbecued piri-piri chicken, available on weekends only) and batatas a rodelas ("dollar-cut" chips, some of the best damn fries in Vancouver).

All washed down with a couple bottles of vinho verde! :biggrin:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Two Greek restaurants that my wife and I enjoy are Stefano's in New Westminster and Simpatico's on West 4th.

Stefano's has a really pleasant atmosphere and great decor. It seems a little more elegant than the average taverna and the food is great. It is family run and the staff never seem to change. I like the professional service.

Simpatico's is the place to go when we attend Bard on the Beach. It is pretty casual but consistently okay. The food is better than the run-of-the-mill greek places.

Excellent Greek bar food (is that a category?) can be found at River's Reach in New Westminster. They used to be Venus' Pizza but reduced their dining area to put in a beer and wine store.

There are some reasons to dine outside of downtown Vancouver!

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  • 1 year later...

For anyone who's tired of the current selection of Greek places in town - exciting news! Andrew Morrison of Urban Diner reports that a modern Greek resto called Piato will be opening up in September on W. 4th where India Grill used to be: Piato coming to W. 4th

...we can expect “Greek food like we’ve never had it before”. The emphasis will be on sharing plates, or “mize” as he calls it, referring to a popular dining style in Athens. The previous tenants had built over a perfectly good wood-burning oven, and it will now be restored and used during service. Bonus: Graffos says he’s shipping in only the best Greek wines and ouzos, the kinds we never get to see, buy, or taste.

I'm not exactly sure when it happened, but West 4th is definitely now the "it" location for great new restaurants in Vancouver.

健啖家(kentan-ka):A hearty eater

He was a wise man who invented beer." - Plato

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all this talk of savory foods. But what about Baklava? I need some. Lots. For a wedding. Doesn't need to come in a fancy box or anything. But needs to be good. :-) And able to be cut into small-ish pieces (2x2 max)

Karen Dar Woon

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all this talk of savory foods. But what about Baklava? I need some. Lots. For a wedding. Doesn't need to come in a fancy box or anything. But needs to be good. :-) And able to be cut into small-ish pieces (2x2 max)

Have you checked out the Greek bakeries along West Broadway? I don't recall their names, but there are 2 or 3 of them along that stretch west of Macdonald St. They can probably do special orders for large amounts of baklava.

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