Thursday, September 8, 2011

Athens Part 2: Exploring the Plaka and in search of a Greek gyro

After finishing up our lunchtime feast, we decided to walk it off by exploring the Plaka. One nice thing about traveling with our parents is we didn't have to lug gifts back to them. Instead we did some shopping for ourseleves. When one thinks of Greek cuisine, gyros, olive oil, and ouzo are usually the first things to come to mind. Lucky for us olive oil shops were on every corner.

We never knew how much of a difference a quality olive oil's taste could have in comparison to a cheap American olive oil. We probably never knew because we were so used to the flavorless American variety. Also what's nice is that in Greece the olive oil is relatively cheap. The same bottle that would run $20+ in the US was half the cost in Athens.

Of course they had tons and tons of Ouzo. We brought back a few bottles as gifts for friends. A light, affordable, compact gift.

Steve ran into a pistachio vendor and needed to buy a bag for all of us to enjoy. They were amazing! Oven roasted and salted. Much more savory than their weaker California cousin. They had a smoked flavor to them.

Ice Grill was recommended to us by our tour guide. We asked for an authentic sit down eating experience along with a place we could find a good simple gyro. 30 minutes earlier we had finished our sit down feast, but I was NOT leaving Athens without a gyro!

Emi's mom thought this picture was funny because I was so excited to get started on lunch #2.

mmm, the first bite

Even though I was somewhat full, I found a second stomach in order to enjoy this tasty gyro. I noticed everything in Greece is either stuffed with fries or comes with them. They love their fries. I could have gone without them, but in general great gyro and another checkmark for my food eating To Do list.

In the hot, humid, July, middle of the day heat these sweetened ice coffees were a welcome reprieve from our dry, hot mouths.

Kanafeh/Katayifeh or whatever you want to call it as some of you may remember from my memorable meal at Ala Turka in Singapore is one of my favorite desserts of all time. This one proved to be super sweet and a little soggy. Not as amazing as the one in Singapore, but something I had to eat in the Mediterranean.

This baklava was in a cylindrical shape. Different. I usually enjoy the layers of philo. In this shape it was a giant, sweet mass. After enjoying a salty, savory gyro the sweets were a nice change of pace.

Some of you may not know, but Emi's dad has spent a good amount of time in Greece, so he wanted to show us how to deal with the locals.

Little did we know, but we were still in for some amazing, life changing meals during our travels through Greece.

- Kyle


  1. Our agenda in Athens is seriously #1 Acropolis then #2 gyros. I love gyros!

  2. Our agenda in Athens is seriously #1 Acropolis then #2 gyros. I love gyros!