The restaurant scene of Athens has been exciting and alluring for several decades and following a few years of lockdown has now become even more so. Here we present you with some of the most talked-about new arrivals in the capital’s dining scene.
Alexandros Tsiotini’s innovative culinary concept has moved from the greater Hilton area and Dioharous Street to the spot where Athiri restaurant used to be. His new space is more impressive and with a lovely garden. As for the cuisine, it follows the chef’s vision with a stronger element of Greekness and a special emphasis on raw materials.
A: Plateon 15, Athens
Linou Soubaris & Sia
One of the newest hits of the Athenian culinary scene, this restaurant has already become a hit for combining a minimalist décor, candle-lit dining area in Psirri with cuisine that is delightfully simple yet extremely delicious.
A: Melanthiou 2, Athens
One of the most heard-about openings of last autumn was Soil, a fine dining restaurant created by Tasos Mantis (known from his Michelin-star awarded work at Hytra restaurant) and Alexandros Mouridis. Located in a vibrant part of Pagrati near the Panathenaic Stadium, chef Mantis’ famous garden in Alepochori fully inspires the restaurant’s dishes.
A: Ferekidou 5, Athina
This new venture by the team of Yannis Morakis, Giorgos Melissaris and Giorgos Kanellopoulos is based in the space that used to house the old Nikkei restaurant. It’s a premium steakhouse with an expertly designed wine list by sommelier Michalis Theodorakis. The cuts definitely have the upper hand but be sure to try the burgers with dry-aged minced meat, Red Leicester cheddar and caramelized onions as well as the Royal Chicken with truffle and Albufera sauce.
A: Leventi 3, Kolonaki
From the first day it opened, this cool taqueria by Lelo Georgopoulos, Athenagoras Kostakos and the team of Kuko’s went viral and not only because of its catchy name. In these colourful and fun interiors or at one of the tables on the sidewalk, try its well-made, Mexico-inspired cocktails, tacos, mouth-watering sea bream ceviche with hot yellow pepper sauce and a beef tartare with hot pepper sauce.
A: Kalamiotou 15, Athens
One of the most unexpected, tastebud-tickling and feel-good arrivals of last autumn was this Asian restaurant/dim sum bar in Piraeus, in one of its most underdeveloped areas. A breath away from the commercial centre of the port and on a street you probably wouldn’t expect to visit, Kitschen has been set up by Dimitris Liem (with stints at Matsuhisa, Momo and e&o among others) and Spyros Mineto (9Beta). The former has taken over the kitchen, with his deep expertise and a focus on top quality raw materials and high flavour; the latter has set up a drinks section with scrumptious signature cocktails such as Chino Latino, Samurai’s Sling and Cobra Kai.
A: Kanari 5, Piraeus
The Black Salami Microbakery
Foodie Instagrammers know this is currently one of the hottest spots in Athens. It’s not quite a restaurant, but we felt it important to include it in this list. It is described as a micro-bakery (due to limited bread production) and presents one of the most delectable brunch options (top of the line are the Eggs Benedict and Greek kayanas scrambled eggs) as well as great sandwiches with fluffy breads.
A: Zoodochou Pigis 71, Athens
Part of a dining triptych, this ‘neo-traditional’ souvlaki restaurant in Pagrati opened during a lockdown last March. Mimis is the latest venture of Elvi Dimitris Zympas, who also runs the excellent Alficon and Elvis kalamaki bar, in a new experiment with something he really loves.
A: Efranoros 10, Pagrati
Bistrot at Mira Me Athens
With a philosophy of ‘come as a guest, leave as a friend’ this new, ground-floor restaurant is run by executive chef Aris Roussos, who presents his own take on Greek and Mediterranean cuisine, with some Asian twists.
A: Mira Me Athens Hotel | Ermou 118, Athens
Drakoulis Dry & Raw
The luxury steakhouse returns to the capital’s gastronomic scene with a new venue in Kifissia. Its ambition is to become the hottest new ‘meating’ point in the northern suburbs. Stratos Drakoulis puts his signature on the varied menu of this place, which opened very recently.
A: Pentelis 1, Kifisia
Why did it take so long to think of this? Hasapika is a sushi restaurant inside the Varvakeio fish market on Athinas St. Try the Nigiri, sashimi, rolls and Greek-style fish soup, in an environment that could easily have sprung from an Anthony Bourdain show.
A: Central Market | Aristogitonos 1, Athens
Thanos Feskos returned to Greece exactly a year ago after 12 years abroad and a highly successful career in leading restaurants, mainly working as Assistant Head Chef at the famous Geranium in Copenhagen – which he claims changed his whole worldview on food. This summer he will be opening Delta Restaurant, which will centre around contemporary Greek cuisine of high gastronomy at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC).
A: Leof. Andrea Siggrou 364, Athens
Main image | CTC Athens