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We’ve been to Athens quite a few times now – and we just love love loooove the food. The Greeks make food that is fresh, tasty and steeped in tradition (many people joke that they don’t have chefs, they just have Granny chained up in the kitchen.) And if a quality meal that tastes exactly like a little old Greek lady would make at home is what you are after, then there’s good news for you – most Greek restaurants cook amazing food. Greece is honestly one of the only places we’ve visited where the restaurant food is equal to the food cooked at home…..it’s just great food!
But, while it’s pretty damn hard to get a crap meal in Athens – there is nothing wrong with doing a bit of research to find out which restaurants or “tavernas” are the very best in town. That’s why we asked a group of travel bloggers and a few of our local friends we met while staying in Athens last year, their recommendations for the Very Best Tavernas in Athens.
Best Tavernas in Athens – Locals & Travellers Reveal Their Favourite Foodie Hangouts
From The Travellers:
Chrysoula from Travel Passionate
Address: Aiolou 27 10551 Athens
Mana’s Kouzina – Kouzina restaurant is centrally located in Agia’s Irinis square very close to Monastiraki station. Agia’s Irinis square is considered a hot spot in Athens, with many bars and restaurants, just a step away from the Acropolis.
It is one of my favourite restaurants in Athens as it serves traditional Greek dishes from different regions of Greece using only locally sourced ingredients from small and medium producers. During lunch, they have a buffet with 10-12 oven-cooked dishes called magirefta and a selection of salads and desserts to choose from . For dinner, there is a delicious a la carte menu available with traditional Greek flavours. Apart from the great food the restaurant serves the biggest selection of Greek beers.
One of its advantages is the friendly prices combined with quality ingredients and fine taste. If you want to taste traditional Greek food then Mana’s Kouzina, Kouzina is the place for you.
Margherita – The Crowded Planet
Address: Mitropoleos, Athina 105 55, Greece
Every time we go to Athens, Thanasis is our first port of call. We barely have time to drop off our luggage that we head straight to Monastiraki for lunch/dinner at Thanasis. The restaurant needs no introduction – it’s very well known in Athens for a reason, its kofta kebabs are the best in the area, so much so that Thanasis’s outdoor tables fill half of Monastiraki square and it still manages to fill up. You can choose to have a kofta wrap, or to have them on a plate with pita bread, chips and – my own favourite – lashings of yogurt sauce and paprika. Oh please, I want to go back!
What is our fave Taverna in Athens?
Megsy & Tommo – Food Fun Travel
Address: There are a few locations check them all out HERE
As I mentioned earlier we spent a few months living in Greece in 2016, and this gave us plenty of time to explore some of the Best Tavernas in Athens. There are quite a few that come up quite frequently including Mana’s Kouzina and Klimataria which have already been mentioned. These restaurants get mentioned a lot – simply because they really are fantastic. So we are going to mention a place we fell head over heels for. It is a chain restaurant, but their food was amazing, their wine was cheap and tasty and the service was excellent. The restaurant is ΜΠΑΡΜΠΑΔΗΜΟΣ ΝΕΑ ΣΜΥΡΝΗ (no idea what it is in English sorry) and they make a kick-ass Giaourtlou – or possibly γιαουρτλού in greek.
Giaourtlou is a dish that consists of lamb kebabs that are topped with a tomato and yogurt sauce. The kebabs are placed on a bed of pita bread so the bread just absorbs all of the juices from the meat plus the sauce as well. It is a seriously messy meal – but one that gets me drooling just at the thought of it.
Looking for more traditional Greek Food to eat in Greece? Check out our 8 Irresistible Must Try Dishes in Greece – it’s pure Greek Food Porn
Best Tavernas in Athens From The Greek Locals:
Flickr Image: Smoobs
Dimitris – Roo Rover
Address: You might have to check the Facebook page for this one….it’s so local that it’s not even really listed online.
Tiniako is always a great place to go in Alexandras Avenue. Beer for 1,80€ and food for 4€. There are soooooo many cheap places in Athens.
Mikela – Discover Greece
Restaurant: Κληματαριά – Klimataria
Address: Theater Square 2, 10552 – Athens (Πλατεία Θεάτρου 2, 10552 – Αθήνα)
Chatting over inexpensive food and Greek meze while the house wine or tsipouro flows is an inextricable part of Greek social life and Athens is no exception. With historical references dating back to 1911, Diporto (aka two doors) is probably Athens’ oldest taverna, while Klimataria (wine-entwined pergola) is another classic, especially if you are lucky enough to catch an evening of live rebetiko tunes.
But there are modern versions of the not-so-humble taverna, too, such as Melilotos or Tzitzikas & Mermigas serving classic Greek dishes with a contemporary twist. And don’t forget the meze. Indeed, in a city that boasts more than 2,880 hours of sunlight a year, a stop for a meze and tsipouro under the sun, after a long walk, is mandatory.
- Restaurant: Rozalia in Exarcheia (est. 1977)
- Restaurant: Traditional koutouki “To Zempereki” in Moschato area .
- Very close to the old Athens’ Stock Market, you will find Telis Grill House, where you can eat very plain yet very delicious meat dishes. A must eat is a portion of mprizolakia (pork chops). Address: 86 Evripidou str, Psirri (near Omonoia metro station).
Maria – Travel Stories From My World
Restaurant: Οινομαγειρειο Ρακαδικο “Η Κρητη”
Address: Βερανζέρου 5 (εντός στοάς) 10677 Athens, Greece
Restaurant Crete is one of the best places in the city center of Athens where you can find traditional Cretan and Mediterranean greek food.
Not sure what food to expect from Crete? Check out our article about Crete Food HERE
Address: SAINT TRIADOS 11a Eptalophos N. PHILADELPHIA Athens 143 41, Greece
Try the loukoumades drizzled with honey or even chocolate……they are to die for!
Restaurant: Σεϋχέλλες – Seycheles Food & Drink
Address: Kerameikou 49 10436 Athens
Address: Κακουργοδικείου 6, Mοναστηράκι 105 55 Athens
Nona Offers Creative and traditional cuisine for the entire company at affordable prices. Vegan options are available, organic wine, sweets, kafes and Jazz!
If you are heading to Greece soon and you’re working out what to do in Athens, then make sure you check out some, if not ALL of these Best Tavernas in Athens – you’re bellies will thank you for it ;-)
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