Big Olive’s pick of Athenian Restaurants May 16 2014

There are well over 1,000 restaurants in a city with less than a 4,000,000 inhabitants – you can eat somewhere new every night, and in a place that caters to every kind of taste. The Big Olive team has put their favorites into one appetite-whetting list, so pick and choose between these smorgasbords of spots, and fill up on Greek cuisine!

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ATHENIAN CLASSICS
Cozy décor, vintage charm and a romantic setting make these old fashioned eating houses the ideal venue to take your parents for Saturday lunch.

Athinaikon
Mitropoleos 34
+302103252688
Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; Sunday 13:00 – 17:00
€ 15 – 20

Ideal
Panepistimiou 46
+302103303000
Mon.-Sat. 09:00 – 17:00; Closed on Sunday
€ 28 – 35

Kafeneio
Loukianou 26, Kolonaki
+302107237757
Mon.-Sat. 12:00 – 24:00; Closed on Sunday
€ 18 – 22

Kentrikon
Kolokotroni 3 (inside the arcade)
+302103232482
Mon. – Sat. 12:00 – 18:00; Closed on Sunday
€ 20 – 25

CRETAN
Cretan food has become all the rage in recent years and two of the best Athenian restaurants feature fine Cretan cuisine at its best. Both have a longstanding reputation for serving the freshest, most pristine seafood, wild herbs and greens, garlicky bites and local raki (grape-based pomace brandy) to wash them down.

Alatsi
Vrasida 13, Pangrati
+302107210501
Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; closed on Sunday
€ 30 – 37

Kriti
Veranzerou 5, Kanningos Square (inside the arcade)
+302103826998
Mon.-Sat. 11:00-24:00; closed on Sunday
€ 15 – 20

FAST CASUAL, DINERS & SOUVLAKI JOINTS
Some of the best food in Athens isn’t found in expensive restaurants. It’s served in paper napkins or between slices of crusty pita bread. Here are some of the best places to pick up a bite in the capital.

Kosta Souvlaki and Kebabs
Plateia Agias Eirinis 2
+302103232971
Mon.-Fri. 09:00-17:00
€ 5 – 10

Gortynia Souvlaki
Patousa 4, Kanningos Square
+302103822023
€ 3 – 7

Feyrouz Lahmajun
Karori 23,
+302130318060
€ 3 – 7

Falafellas Felafel
Aiolou 51,
+302103239809
€ 3 – 7

San Francisco Sandwiches
Kerameikou 99, 10436 Athens,
+302155512845
€ 5 – 10

Kapetan Fishaei Seafood
Emmanouil Benaki 27, Exarcheia
+302103300035
Mon. – Sat. 11:00 – 24:00
Sun: 13:00 – 21:00
€ 10 – 15

FUSION/ECLECTIC
From traditional dishes with contemporary twists to exciting blends of flavors from around the world these restaurants offer guests a sumptuous dining experience.

Funky Gourmet
Paramythias 13, Kerameikos
+302105242727
Tues.-Sat. 19:30 – 22:30; Closed Sunday and Monday
€ 65 – 120

Athiri
Plateon 15, Kerameikos
+302103462983
Tues.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; Sun. 13:00-17:00; Closed on Monday
€ 25 – 30

Aleria
Megalou Alexandrou 57, Metaxourgeio
+302105222633
Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; Closed on Sunday
€ 30 – 35

Alexandria
Metsovou 13, Mouseio
+302108210004
Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; Sun. 13:00-17:00; Closed on Mondays
€ 20 – 30

GREEK COMFORT FOOD
The hottest segment of the booming casual restaurant scene brings a refined touch to Greek tavern classics and satisfies our cravings for Greek comfort food.

Melilotos
Kalamiotou 19
+302103222458
Mon. 12:00 – 18:00; Tues – Sat.  12:00 – 01:00; Sun. 14:00 – 22:00
€ 17 – 20

Mani Mani
Falirou 10, Koukaki
+302109218180
Mon.-Fri. 15:00-24:00; Sat. 13:00-24:00; Sun. 13:00-18:00
€ 20 – 25

KOSHER
When it comes to keeping it kosher in the capital’s restaurants, the choice isn’t immense. Many gentile restaurants in town offer up Kosher-friendly items but if you seek something certified and supervised, consider Gostijo a Kosher pan-middle eastern restaurant that specializes in Sephardic cuisine.

Gostijo
Esopou 10, Psyrri
+302103233825
Mon. –Thur.: 17:00 – 23:00; Friday:  Shabbat reservations only;
Saturday: one hour after sunset until late; Sunday: 12.00 – 23.00
€ 18 – 25

MUSEUM RESTAURANTS
These new museum restaurants have ushered in a post-cafeteria era and offer hearty meals to hungry tourists as they pace themselves viewing exhibits.

Acropolis Museum Restaurant
Dinonysiou Areopagitou 15, Acropolis
+302109000900
Tues.-Sun. 8 a.m. -8 p.m. Fri 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Closed on Monday
€ 12 – 15

Benaki Museum Restaurant
Koumpari 1, Kolonaki
+302103671000
Wed. & Fri. 09:00-17:00; Thur. & Sat. 09:00-24:00; Sun. 09:00-16:00; Closed Monday and Tuesday.
€ 20 – 25

SEAFOOD
From the humble Triantaphyllo to the sophisticated Milos, Athens boasts dozens of fresh seafood restaurants. These are the top spots in town to load up on those omega-3s.

Milos
Leoforos Vasilissis Sofias 46, Hilton
+302107244400
€ 45 – 50
Mon.-Sat. 12:30 – 16:30 & 19:00 – 24:00; Sun. 13:00 – 17:00

Triantaphyllo tis nostimias
Lekka 22, downtown Athens (inside the arcade)
+302103227298
€ 15 – 20
Mon.-Sat. 11:30am-19:00; closed on Sunday

Lesvos
Emmanouil Benaki 88, Exarcheia
+302103814525
Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; Sunday 13:00 – 17:00
€ 15 – 20

Stoa Ouzeri
Themistokleous 11, Exarcheia (inside the arcade)
+302103825961
Mon. – Fri. 10:00- 01:00; Sat. 10:00-19:00, closed on Sunday
€ 10 – 15

Ouzeri tou Laki
Elpidos 16, Victoria Square
+302108213776
Mon.-Sat. 13:00 – 24:00; Sunday 13:00- 17:00
€ 15 – 20

TAVERNS & LUNCH SPOTS
Athens is home to some of the oldest taverns in the nation. Diporto – first opened in 1887 – is considered to be the oldest tavern in Greece. These spots are some of the most beloved in town.

Diporto Agoras
Theatrou & Sokratous, Gerani
+302103211463
€ 10 – 20

Stou Meidani  
Sokratous 3, Gerani
Mon. – Sat. 12:00 – 17:00; Closed on Sunday
+302103249073
€ 12 – 17

Oinomageirio Ipiros
Filopimenos 4, Athens Central Municipal Market
24-Hour Restaurant
+302103240773
€ 10 – 12

Stoa Proia lunch spot
Panepistimiou 39, (inside the arcade)
Mon. – Sat. 12:00 – 17:00; Closed on Sunday
+302103313400
€ 5 – 10

Kapetan Michalis ouzo joint
Feidiou 3
+302103820073
Mon. – Sat. 12:00-24:00, Closed on Sunday
€ 10 – 15

Dexameni ouzo joint
Plateia Dexamenis, Kolonaki
Mon.-Sun. 09:00-24:00
€ 10 – 15

VEGETARIAN
Avocado doesn’t subsist on salad alone and offers intriguing and delicious menus that even meat eaters will want to chow down.

Avocado Food for Life
Nikis 30
+302103237878
Mon.-Sat. 10pm-10am; Sunday 10pm – 7pm
€ 15 – 20

WINE BARS & RESTAURANTS 
Not sure whether to pair your Cabernet with pork? Which white goes best with fish? These restaurants aren’t just about eating local, but drinking local wines, too.

Stinking Bishop wine bar & restaurant
Patriarchou Ioakim 43, Kolonaki
+302130263656
€ 20-30

Scala Vinoteca wine bar and restaurant
Sina 50, Athina
+302103610041
Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00; Closed on Sunday
€ 25 – 30

Oinoscent wine bar
Voulis 45
+302103229374

Heteroclito wine bar
Petraki 30
+302103239406

By the glass wine bar
Georgiou Souri 3
+302103232560

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