Nice n Easy
60 Omirou Str. & Skoufa Str., Kolonaki, Athens, T. 210 3617201 - 7 Papadiamanti Str., Kifissia, Τ. 210 8082014 – Alefkantra Sq., Mykonos Town, Τ. 22890 25421, www.niceneasy.gr
By Titi Velopoulou, Photos: Maria Chatziioanidou
When in 2008 it made its debut in Kolonaki as the first organic bistro in Greece, it was a pioneer for its time. Today, along with its “siblings” in Kifissia and Mykonos, it has every reason to take pride in introducing to the people of Athens the ultimate farm to table experience!
It is the first authentic organic bistro that has been established in the gastronomic map of Athens, fully embracing the philosophy of healthy eating-healthy living. Of course its success was not accidental! The people behind this inspired idea, Dimitris Christoforidis and the chef Christos Athanasiadis aimed, from the very beginning, not only to meet different nutritional needs, but also to demolish the common belief that organic is not affordable. That is why they have travelled to the most remote villages and islands of the country to bring traditional organically produced ingredients from fair trade farms to a value for money menu that informs us about the nutritional value of the dishes as well as the origin of the ingredients, most of which are Greek, pure, fresh, healthy ... and cooked the way our mom used to!And all this effort has been justified not only through the love of the people but also with the unique distinction at this year’s European Business Awards! Among the loyal customers of Nice n Easy are not only health food enthusiasts but also individuals belonging to special groups (diabetics, vegans, athletes) who are looking for an authentic bio organic experience that starts from the morning with a health- oriented breakfast (daily 10:00-14:00), tonic smoothies, detox beverages, and continues with dishes and recipes hat do not lack in nutritional value nor in flavor, as they combine their ingredients in such a way that the benefits are multiplied. Besides the… raw options and the exquisite salads –must is considered the super anitioxidant “Ava Gardner” (in regular and individual portions)– the “oskar” in pasta has been won by “Robert de Niro” (cockerel from Naxos with tagliatelle) and “Jack Nicholson” (bucatini with pecorino and smoked pancetta), while in the main courses the “Frank Sinatra” (Black Angus tagliata) is in the lead with the “Sean Connery” (fresh salmon) and the light “Pamela Anderson” (turkey fillet burgers) fighting for the preference of the female crowd! Extra: The menu of Mykonos' restaurant is completely gluten free. From €25. Daily 9:00-01:30.
• The updated list of organic wines and the wide range of Greek beers.
• The signature cocktail list!
• Their own buffalo farm at lake Kerkini.
• Some of them low-calorie, other antioxidant-rich and fiber-rich, and others meant to enhance heart function, all the menu dishes are caloriemonitored by nutritionist Christina Kostara.
• Vegan options such as the ultra slimming noodles “Brigitte Bardot” from konjac roots with vegetables, the… guilt-free burger (with roast portobello) and the avocado on the grill!
• Gluten-free options.
8-10 2nd Merarchias Str., Piraeus, Τ. 210 4116505
Photos: Eleanna Kourkoulopoulou
Speaking of emblematic all day bar-restaurants of Athens, we are obliged to mention the Beluga, which continues for a second year to leave its mark in the hot piazza of the port! With a name inspired by premium products (such as the known vodka and the caviar) and a benchmark location (where the erotic cinema Fos used to be housed), Beluga has to show one of the most beautiful buildings in the city. Art deco style, soft lighting, red tones, antiques combined with modern industrial elements, geometric sculptures with reference to the artist Mondrian, an indoor balcony with the neon sign “Hotel” where suddenly a girl playing a harlot appears, compose a nostalgic cabaret setting bearing the signature of the renowned designer Nikos Skopelitis. Set in the background of its atmospheric bar and its private dining corners which are placed on the glass floor “protecting” the antiquities dating back to 435 BCE (which consist the foundations of the 5th arcade of Piraeus), the elite shipping, business, political and artistic crowd enjoys exceptional coffee blends in the morning, plethoric brunches and creative Mediterranean cuisine by chef Stratos Koulelis during lunchtime. Great options the rib eye, the fresh fish and sushi. In the afternoon, the after office parties (daily from 17:00) uplift the mood, while in the evening the coveted bar offers an excellent cocktail list, rare wine and premium international drinks. All these are the reason why Beluga offers a unique experience throughout the day. Daily 09:00-04:00.
The reservations, especially for dining.
• The high end service (including a variety of rare cigars).
• The live concerts every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (after 21:00) with hip jazz, swing and rock ‘n’ roll music.
• The Greek party every Sunday (after 19:00) with Dimitris Alexandrou, Giorgos Manikas, Kostas Sideratos, which cause panic to the young crowd.
• This year it also functions as a member club.
• If you are lucky, you will get to see some magic by Giannis Bozovitz behind the bar!
www.chocolatroyal.gr, 27 Apostolou Pavlou Str., Thissio
One of the best all day choices at the historic center, the Chocolat
Royal introduces us to its philosophy, an outcome of the mix &
match of its premium services guaranteeing extraordinary sensory
By Katerina Rigou, Photos: Eleanna Kourkoulopoulou
Εxperience of senses
A visit at Chocolat Royal, on the picturesque paved Ap. Pavlou Str. of Thissio, can in many ways become an unforgettable experience! Amongst them, its location which offers an incredible view of the Acropolis, particularly from its roof, its design cozy space extending on three floors, its outdoor space with the tables on the paved street and, of course, its upper class services. From the buffet with its –fine coffee and imaginative beverages– to the bar and the cellar, all have been designed with an attention to detail by the experts of the kind. The Chocolat Royal has one of the best teams a business can have headed by the owner Petros Pikoulas. Its menu, which daily receives exceptional reviews, finds its epicenter on the Mediterranean creative cuisine, inspired and prepared by the known chef Spyros Mallios. Dithyrambic are also the comments about the dessert menu consisting of 30 excellent recommendations by the talented pastry chef Charalampos Kalogiannis. During the evenings, we enjoy our drinks selected from an updated cellar with premium labels, the in house cocktail alternatives or choices from the newly added wine bar in the ground floor.
More than 80 labels from the Greek vineyard form a rather interesting list which keeps on being updated based on real knowledge, love for wine, communication with the customers and cooperation with one of the best and most renown oenologists, Dimitris Spyropoulos, who greatly adds to the venture with his strong resume and impressive collaborations. In addition, Chocolat Royal organizes wine tastings presenting various producers as well as the wine culture in combination with exceptional delicacies from the kitchen. Needless to say, the success does not stop the Chocolat from continuing to pleasantly surprise us day after day by keeping the bar high by maintaining high standards of services! Daily 09:30-02:30 (kitchen open 12:00-00:00).
The cheesecake. The best tasting you probably ever had.
Slow cooked lamp shank in the oven with sage, accompanied by fresh potato gnocchi, the truly delicious grilled rib eye steak with pepper sauce, the asparagus with baby potatoes, the honeyed pork with sangria and rosemary, the mashed sweet potatoes, vegetables and risotto.
The exceptional brunch card, every weekend 11:00-
An innovative and intriguing concept can be found on
the 1st floor of Chocolat Royal. With sales & marketing
directions by Mandy Karameri, the space operates
providing the opportunity for the guests to sample over
the ancient Greek cuisine daily from 12:00 to 20:00. The
venue is available on request throughout the day for
events with ancient themed lunch
or dinner under the
title “Ancient Gourmet.”
13 Vrasida Str., Hilton, Athens, Τ. 210 7210501, M. 6977 210501, www.vassilenas.gr
By Titi Velopoulou
After 96 years in Piraeus, Vassilenas, the much-awarded all-time classic restaurant has recently moved to the Hilton area, one of the most upcoming gastronomical spots of the city! This state of the art space with pumice stone walls, was designed by reputed architects Maria Kokkinou and Andreas Kourkoulas and recollects the urban glamour of the 60s, while architecturally it seems to be “conversing” with the flagship Hilton building just across the road. Hundreds of lit wine bottles suspended from the ceiling create a stunning lighting effect in a space dominated by an impressive walk-in cellar with over 150 wine labels. In the most historic restaurant in town, where the likes of Winston Churchill and Elia Kazan, T.S. Elliot and René Clair, Romy Schneider and Sofia Loren, Irene Papas and Melina Mercouri have dined, you will enjoy high gastronomy that focuses on sea dishes such as fresh prawnand- amberjack tartar or fish soup prepared with brown grouper. The seven-dish tasting menu is a unique experience. Vassilenas was the first restaurant in Greece to introduce the concept, back in 1929!
• The impressive glass walk-in cellar that holds over 150 wine labels, particularly focusing on Greek vineyards. The wine list is constantly updated under the care of Gregory Michailos (AIWS).
• Taramosalata according to the 1929 secret recipe.
• Orzo pasta risotto with prawns, smoked tomato and greens.
• Cod fritters in batter. Mon.-Sat. 13:00-01:00.
www.soleto.gr | 33-35 Laodikis Str.
By Katerina Rigou, Photo Eleanna Kourkoulopoulou
Launched 5 years ago this elegant space –this year we find it renovated– has become a favorite spot of Glyfada and every moment of the day feels special here. Early in the morning we enjoy our coffee along with tasty breakfast and brunch options (until 17:00). As the day passes by, a menu of Italian gastronomy well curated by the renowned chef Michalis Ntounetas becomes the center of attention, while a special place is reserved for the sweet creations of the talented pastry chef Konstantinos Cholevas. At the same time, the lovers of Japanese cuisine find a seat at the Asian Room to enjoy exceptional dishes – must taste the sushi rolls and the main dishes such as the black cod. In the evenings, we cannot miss out on the chance to enjoy a drink or a cocktail around its bar listening to mainstream sounds. Its main advantage is the well updated cellar with a large variety of labels from the national and international vineyard. From €25. Daily 08:00-02:00.
The emphasis in quality ingredients many of which originating from the owners’ farm in Spetses.
The healthy and organic options and the premium dishes of the menu such as pappardelle pasta with king crab and florina peppers, as well as the chateaubriand beef fillet!
8 Αg. Sikelianou Str., Neο Psychico, Athens, Τ. 210 5241120, www.pollymaggoo.gr |
Starting point for this delicious trip is Paris… where the idea of Polly Maggoo was
inspired by a film noir poster, directed by photographer William Klein in 1966.
By Titi Velopoulou, Photos: Kostas Kapareliotis
First stop… Metaxourgio. Polly Maggoo bistro is being launched in 2009 in a neighborhood of
Metaxourgio and soon becomes a point of reference for its unpretentious style and its Parisian essence, similar to the hangouts at Saint Germain. Chef and owner Giorgos Iliou impresses with a menu avoiding extravaganzas, until last July when the successful recipe is transferred north to write a new chapter in the gastronomic map of Athens. Next stop… Psychico. Upon entering into the new home of Polly Maggoo you instantly feel a sense of familiarity, although there is little to remind of Leonidou Street. Here, a new aldomodovaric aesthetic, a mix and match of a French bistro, using cinematic elements and a homey atmosphere is the outcome of the efforts of architect and mechanic Panagiota Kamperou (George’s wife) and director Haris Michalogiannakis (co-owner). The ground floor declares its obvious bistro mentality with authentic Parisian influences and classic motives of the French city, but, walking up the stairs brings you to a cozy homey corner, with carpets, fer forze sitting places, "museum" show cases with works of art, all harmoniously and happily blended together. Special attention was given to the columns which were used as noteboards depicting notes and memories from personal collections which inadvertently aim to start a "dialogue" with the customers whilst they enjoy their dinner. As for the menu, it is based on the same philosophy… that of a French cuisine with Mediterranean influences and earthy, easy to understand flavors. Giorgos managed to blend classic meals such as lentils with poached egg, salad with goat cheese, snails with juicy liver. Next to them stand dishes such as entecote, lamb sew and sea bass tartar for the fans of the kind. From its new age appetizers the ones that easily stand out are the asparagus with camembert. Plus, a casual atmosphere and an easy going service which allows you to fully enjoy your culinary trip without interferences. From €25. Tue.-Sat. 18:00-00:00, Sun. 13:00-17:30 (during winter). Mon.- Sat. 18:00-00:00 (during summer).
• The wine list, which counts about 45 labels of the Greek and French vineyard.
• The handmade sweets, amongst which best seller
are the profiterole and the mascarpone cream in a millefeuillet.