Because we work in the industry food and because, of course, we love food – we have had quite a big number of times to eat out in our Greek taverns. So, if you allow me, I’m going to try to gather some tips for all of you that come to eat in Greece during your vacations.
It is essential to know all this information because, even for us, once in a while, eating out is not the best experience. This somehow makes sense, like in everything else, not everybody cooks with passion or knows how to run a tavern.
I advise you to consider the following tips before you eat out here:
1. You might always want to eat in the best centered tavern or “psistaria” with the best view. Well that might not be the best quality food you will find. Try to find where do Greeks eat? Look for old taverns.
2. The menu you are looking for – if you do want to eat local dishes: avoid all international cuisine & Greek and ‘whatever else you can imagine types of menu’ taverns. You will want traditional Greek food if you are here. Trust me, cuisine is similar. All Italian and international dishes have equivalent in Greek cuisine but it’s not bolognese – it’s makaronia me kima. 🙂
3. A huge menu with everything from it available should not be expected! You should find steaks (beef, pork, chicken), seasonal salads and some cooked dishes. You should ask what do you have cooked today? This way you eat the fresh menu of the day – it’s always the best choice.
4. If you are in a vacation and found a very good food place, stick with it. It’s what we always do, it’s safe and it’s more than OK. So that you don’t end-up being charged extra extra extra or eat the lowest quality sea-food like it happened to us, and we were not even tourists.
5. Quantity-wise 2 people should be more than OK with one salad, one appetizer (fried feta, zucchini or tomato balls, or other fried vegetables) and one dish each. Do not order more before you understand you really need more. Dishes are always huge here. 🙂
The cheapest food este is in the small fast-foods (take away), than can have 2-3 tables and the restaurants called “psistaria”. A Greek salad, pita gyros, pita souflaki or 2-3 suflaki sticks (pork or chicken pieces grilled on a stick), french fries and it will be the cheapest + it’s delicious and always fresh. It’s not always safe to eat the saces they have, or the tzatziki, you have to check the store you are in and make sure that it’s clean an it has rush so that the food will be fresh.
Then the sweet and salty crepes! You can have a full meal from a salty crepe with chicken, egg, mushrooms, bacon, salad and even fries + some cheese sauces. You will also find olive slices in these shops, but they are not going to be the most fresh you can find, nobody puts olives in a crepe. 🙂
The cheapest fish – Size and price wise sardines and anchovy can be fund in tavernas and fish tavernas fried (my fav.) and grilled – delicious. See this fish (my nutritionist said) is the healthiest meat to be found – and yet people don’t order it – it’s cheap food. Absolutely delicious, great summer dinner choice, I promise!
The expensive fish is the fresh fish and the seafood found in psaro / fish taverna. For the ones of you who afford it, you find all sorts of fish (xifias is my favorite – swordfish) and of course shrimps, octopus, calamari (love fried fresh calamari rings), mussels or water bugs in paella style of dishes.