(Photo by: Stu_Spivack)
Baklava is a delicious Greek dessert you simply have to eat while in Athens!
Eating Your Way Through Athens
The Greeks are known for many wonderful things and their cuisine is at the top of that list. Greek food is some of the tastiest in the world and most of it is healthy for you to boot! The Greeks have always had a handle on food. In fact, the first cookbook in history was written by a Greek, Archestratus, who cooked it up – sorry, I had to – in 320 B.C. The culinary traditions in Greece date over 4,000 years, so I think it’s safe to say that these wonderful Mediterranean people know a thing or two about food! I love writing foodie blog posts, so let’s eat our way through Athens and enjoy delicious foods centuries old!
No traveler is created equal. Some of you are traveling on a budget; some of you are taking your dream trip and sparing no cost. Some of you are meat eaters; others are vegetarians. The beauty of Greek food and a destination as big as Athens is that you have unlimited options when it comes to cuisine pricing and type. Because no reader is created equal either, I’m going to list a variety of restaurants for you to try. The only thing they have in common is that they are all some of the best in the city!
Where to Eat
- Bar Bee Kiou – Bar Bee Kiou is a burger joint unlike any you’ve ever eaten at before. This is fast food Greek style, and the burgers and fries are topped with fresh, unique ingredients. Everything is homemade at Bar Bee Kiou, including the sauces and sweet buns the burgers rest upon. Alongside burgers topped with eclectic things such as eggs and feta cheese, you’ll also find gruyere-topped fries among other goodies. For burger enthusiasts of the traditional fare, Bar Bee Kiou also serves a mean cheeseburger topped with the stuff we all know and love, like onions, tomatoes, and homemade ketchup and mayo. Bar Bee Kiou is located at Freatidos Avenue 13, Piraeus.
- Kebab and Curry – Indian food in Athens? Why not… when it’s this good, that is! Athens is a multi-cultural city and you’ll find the Kebab and Curry in the Pakistani neighborhood of Attica. You can enjoy Bollywood movies while you eat some of the best chicken korma you’ve ever had; after all, the owners are Indian and the dishes authentic. Other delicious options are the beef curry, beef vindaloo, tawa goat, and the shrimp tikka masala. There are numerous rice dishes to help absorb some of the spicy sauces, and the restaurant offers wonderful naan, too. You’ll find Kebab and Curry at Skouze 14, Piraeus.
- Pnyka – My Big Fat Greek Wedding turned Americans on to spanakopita, and with good reason. These spinach pies are wonderfully tasty! Pnyka is an Athens bakery that has been around for years, since 1981 to be exact. This bakery takes its baking quite seriously; in fact, the original owner traveled around the globe discussing the health benefits of his homemade Greek breads. Everything in this bakery is made 100-percent from scratch – even the flour the bakery uses in its phyllo dough and breads. The local favorite is Pnyka’s spinach pie – spanakopita. But, you also have to try the cheese pie, or tyropite. Pnyka’s main location is Pratinou 13, Pagrati.
- Taxidevontas – Seafood is a huge part of Greek cuisine; naturally, the country rests on the Mediterranean, Aegean, and Crete Seas. Taxidevontas serves the freshest fish in town, hand-delivered each morning by local fishermen. People rave about Taxidevontas’ fish soup, but that’s not all you’ll be eating at this authentic seafood restaurant. Alongside the fish soup, Taxidevontas serves its patrons boiled red fish mixed with carrots, potatoes, and zucchini. It sounds simple, but trust me, the combination of ingredients gives the dish amazing flavor. Taxidevontas is located at Platonos 72, Piraeus.
- To Koutouki tou Marathoniti – This is authentic Greek food at its finest, and the restaurant itself is a unique experience as well. To Koutouki tou Marathoniti sits underground and has been family-run for decades. The restaurant screams of old-world Greek-tavern tradition, as does the amazing food. Try the grilled ewe chops, a traditional dish reflective of Greece’s sheep-rearing past. Many say this restaurant is the only place that really knows how to cook the meat! Side dishes include a fava bean and onion puree and wild greens boiled with lemon and olive oil. Again, simple ingredients yielding astounding flavors. To Koutouki tou Marathoniti is found at 253 Ymittou and Vinkelman 3, Mets.
Bakeries, ethnic cuisine, fast food, and traditional Greek fare and seafood… it’s all good, and you’ll find it all in Athens. One of the best things about vacationing is the rules don’t apply and that includes your diet! What’s great about Athens is that you can cheat on that diet a million different ways! Even better, Greek cuisine is made with wholesome, natural ingredients, so even the desserts aren’t as bad for you as you might think… okay, maybe they are, but who cares! Go on! Pack your appetite and eat your way through Athens!