5 Hotspots for Downtown Dining
Pamper your tastebuds at these downtown dining hotspots that are anything but ordinary…
At Nolan, Chef Sotiris Kontizas masterfully blends shades of Japan, Vietnam, Korea and China with indigenous Greek touches like an in-demand Hollywood make-up artist. Five years ago, this kind of exciting Asian-Greek culinary mash-up was all too rare on the downtown scene. True to its urban surroundings, the décor is bright and thrifty, with a fresh minimalist palette. Unlike many other fusion restaurants, there is a lovely simplicity of execution that brings to mind the very best tradition of that favourite neighbourhood taverna you can’t help going back to – and the food manages to be both creative and nourishing.
High notes: Kontizas’ addictive Fast Food play: NFC (Nolan Fried Chicken), served in a deep bowl with lots of redemptive green vegetables.
Voulis 33, 210.324.3545, www.nolanrestaurant.gr
Art, taste, fashion and music collide at this welcoming new “ethnic urban” space, formerly Root Artspace. Go for a weekend morning yoga class followed by a top-notch brunch; then hang all day to soak up the creative buzz and feel-good tunes at this beautifully-restored, multi-tasker of a venue.
High notes: Feisty Mexican street food choices and the on-site art gallery.
Herakleidon 10, Thissio, 210.345.0003 | Facebook
If 2015’s feel-good movie “Chef” left you longing, like us, for the perfect Cuban sandwich, head to Tacqueria Maya where tacos, burritos, quesadillas and other fantastic tastes of Latin American street food are the name of the game. The meat is marinated and slow-cooked to perfect tenderness. Vegetarians are catered for too.
High notes: The warm and friendly atmosphere coupled with pocket-friendly prices.
Petraki 10, Athens, 211.216.7081, www.taqueriamaya.com
An intimate French bistro, tucked away inside an arcade off Syntagma Square, ideal for after-work drinks with friends, a stolen lovers’ interlude, or a stylish coffee date with a client.
High notes: Alluring gold trimmings, cosy mood and smooth tunes + dangerously delicious cocktails on tap (bearing exotic garnishes like toasted pineapple syrup and lime nutmeg!)
Othonos 10, 210.321.5561
Feedel Urban Gastronomy
This new secret gem, in a quiet square in the heart of Athens, won’t stay secret for too much longer, we predict. Since opening in December, Feedel has already become a firm Instagram favourite, thanks to its funky interior and heartfelt Mediterranean cuisine.
High notes: Green fava (!), pork sirloin pancetta – and a delightful patch of green space, perfect for al-fresco moments come the Spring!
Dena 1, Athens, 210.321.0551
Museum of Greek Gastronomy
Watch this space as the dynamic young Konstantinos Matsourdellis, who masterminded the country’s first Greek Gastronomy Museum in 2012, re-opens his marvelous courtyard restaurant in Psyrri (in early March). The restaurant will dish up modern Hellenic cuisine that dovetails with the museum’s avant-garde gastronomic exhibitions.
High notes: The venue itself – a delightfully restored, two-storey neoclassical “grand dame” in the culinary heart of Athens.
Agiou Dimitrious Street, Psyrri, 210.321.1311, www.gastronomymuseum.gr