Quintessential Greek flavours
The Greek cuisine is the epitome of the Mediterranean diet which is highly regarded all around the world for its exceptional nutritious benefits. Wide-ranging to include both meat and vegetable dishes, the core of the most celebrated recipes have been passed on from one generation to the next. Explore the sumptuous Greek cuisine during your visit to Athens from traditional to fusion, gourmet and modern versions that will bring both comfort and pleasure to your taste palate.
Olives & Olive Oil
The exquisite, extra virgin olive oil is the backbone of Greece and has been produced since ancient times. Awarded time and time again, it has received international recognition for its nutritional properties. Being used on a daily basis since forever, olives and olive oil are a flavor trademark of Greece, so you should therefore try to taste as much of it as possible! All you need to taste the full flavor of this ancient super nutrient is some freshly baked bread to dip into it.
Like olives & olive oil, Greek wine has been a part of Greek life for centuries. The oldest variety recorded in history, that of Retsina, was generously consumed since ancient times, and it was the beverage of choice for formal symposiums or casual dinners, toasted to by philosophers, men of the state as well as the regular population, and interesting fact is that the ancient Greeks produced wine that was so strong, they typically drank it by diluting it with water. There are a few wineries in the greater region of Athens producing the flagship variety of Savatiano among others, which you can visit and discover the journey of Athenian viticulture. Athens has a vibrant wine scene, so check out the best rated wine bars in the city for enjoying some incredible labels, paired with some local delicacies that will best accompany the flavour of the chosen wine.
The Greek Souvlaki
The most popular local street food, the Greek souvlaki is the perfect on-the-go comfort food combining meat (chicken or pork) in gyro style or skewers, topped with sliced tomato, onion, parsley and the famous Tzatziki (yogurt, cucumber & garlic dip) all wrapped in pita bread. Greek souvlaki is served almost everywhere and most places do them well, since it is a national street food dish.
The Greek Salad
Tomatoes, green peppers, cucumbers, onions, feta cheese and capers are the main ingredients of the Greek salad that Greeks call ‘horiatiki’ which literally means village salad. Topped with plenty of extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with oregano, it can be treated as a nutritious vegetarian meal in itself or shared as part of a larger meal.
The food markets of Athens
For those who wish to sample the rustic side of the Athens food scene, at the center of Athens you will find the meat, fish, dairy and herb markets. Stalls of various merchants promote their wares proudly, although be prepared for a pungent smell and a bit of loudness. These markets are the source of many raw materials that end up in small tavernas and fine dining restaurants, so if you are not queasy about raw meat being on full display then you can check them out.