Eat, drink and be merry
Elena Panayides rounds up some of the city’s hottest restaurants that tick off all the right boxes: good food, good wine, good vibes, guaranteed good times!
Cherchez la Femme
Don’t let the French name fool you. Across from the imposing Metropolitan Cathedral of Athens, a delightful Greek bistro transports you to more elegant times. Cherchez la Femme’s retro stylish decor and music provide the backdrop for traditional Greek meze dishes, elevated with a modern twist by chef Andreas Layos. Try the traditional loukoumi from Syros and the tasty fried potatoes from Naxos dripping with cheese. A curated Greek wine, tsipouro and ouzo list seal the deal on delectable dining.
Mitropoleos 46, Athens. Tel: +30 210.322.2020
In the spectacular Onassis Cultural Centre, the Michelin-starred Hytra is the spot for gastronomic Greek delights. In the summer, dine al fresco on the 7th floor, for show-stopping views of an illuminated Athens. Executive Chef Tassos Mantis has created a fine dining and bistro menu that ingeniously serves up haute cuisine infused with Greek flavours. All-time classics like ‘spanakorizo’ (spinach with rice) are deconstructed with artistic flair. If you’re feeling bold (and have taken a taxi!) opt for the wine pairing degustation menu.
Leof. Andrea Syngrou 107, Athens. Tel: +30 210.331.6767
An all-day and night cafe, bar and restaurant serving global cuisine in a modern, sleek and sexy interior design. Stylish Athenians gravitate to this downtown Kolonaki hotspot, known for its potent and creative cocktails. After 9pm a host of top DJs raise the tempo. From the Japanese and European menu standouts are the Crab Tartare with yuzu sauce, the Classic Schnitzel with roast rosemary potatoes (enough food for two), and the Duck Confit cooked for 16 hours.
Patriarchou Ioakim 38, Athens. Tel: +30 210.723.8334
Almost as old as the Parthenon (established in 1939), the historic glamour and charm of Zonars has been restored and elevated to make it the ultimate downtown Athens spot. Chef Nikos Skliras offers delicious dishes from brunchtime to bedtime, while Anna Santasetto showcases her expertise on the sushi menu. To end your meal on a sweet high, legendary Greek patisserie delivers on its tradition with diet-busting throwback desserts, like ice-cream sundaes. The rooms inspires with its high-end design elements and the beautiful crowd of celebrities, fashionistas, Athenians and visitors it always attracts.
Voukourestiou 9, Athina 106 71. Tel: +30 21.0325.1430
Named after Frida Kahlo’s birthplace, Coyoacan is recreated in Thisseio. Escape to this impressive Mexican hacienda, with its unique and imposing Frida murals, neon skulls and retractable roof. The highly Instagrammable spot offers authentic Mexican dishes, such as mixto ceviche, washed down with innovative cocktails. Their ‘Mexican Ritual’ blends Don Julio anejo with Zacapa 23, apricot brandy, pink grapefruit cordial, passion fruit, chilli honey and mustard chutney. Under the watchful gaze of the Frida, the Wednesday ‘Nomadic Nights’ and Sunday ‘Gypsy Soul’ feature live performers and fantastic Mykonos DJs spinning the best house music.
Iraklidon 10, Athens. Tel: +30 21.0345.7102