People from all over the country and the world arrive in Naxos each year to visit Melimilon, home to Greece’s most sought-after homemade marmalades.
Local Evangelia Lianopoulou has spent the last few years introducing authentic Naxian flavours to thousands of people from all over the world through her delightful creations including homemade jams, marmalades, spoon sweets, and liqueurs, which are all made from locally sourced produce.
“My passion has always been to give people a true and authentic Naxian experience. I try and use as many local products and Cycladic flavours for people to taste,” Evangelia tells IN+SIGHTS GREECE.
Ancient Greeks referred to marmalade as Melimilon, which is the name Evangelia chose for her thriving family business that now includes her famous range of homemade products, an all-day cafe and this year they also opened a concept store in the heart of town, where people can purchase an even wider range of Melimilon products.
Evangelia’s creations include her apple and plum marmalade, prickly pear jam, and sweet potato jam; as well as a special tomato and onion marmalade- and if you are lucky you may be able to get your hands on limited edition beetroot, zucchini or pumpkin flavours.
“I try to use ingredients that give people more opportunity to try a different range of flavours, aromas and tastes of Greece and more specifically from our beautiful Cycladic islands,” she says.
Evangelia reveals it was her grandmother’s cooking that inspired her to launch her products, as her grandparents’ garden was always full of fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs, all organic “with the most wonderful taste. I had to create something special and allow others to taste the wholesome goodness.”
After seeing the instant love people had for her homemade jams, Evangelia decided it was time to expand and she opened up a cafe, where visitors had a chance to try the marmalades before they purchased them. From its inviting courtyard setting to its chic old-style interior, which is filled with Melimilon products, the light and breezy cafe has quickly become a favourite breakfast spot on the island.
The enticing menu includes free-range eggs made in a variety of ways, tiganites (Greek-style pancakes) topped with local cheese and Melimilon’s marmalades; cheese and spinach pies served with homemade spiced preserves, as well as freshly baked sweets and a range of coffees and juices.
Melimilon’s success has seen it expand once again and this year they opened a charming store located in the island’s old town, where people can purchase a range of homemade jams, honey, liqueurs, spices, herbs, and other local goods they can take home.
What makes Melimilon so special is that it allows visitors to experience an old-world charm, when Greece’s life had a slower pace, and locals from the island gathered food from their garden and shared it with family and friends. This is what Evangelia now wants to share with the rest of the world.
Melimilon Cafe: Agios Georgiou Street, Chora, Naxos
Melimilon Pantry: Old Town, Naxos
Featured Images by IN+SIGHTS GREECE