Food & Drink
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List of foods and Descriptions
What usually happens when you walk into a restaurant is after finding a table (almost always outdoors between the months of May and October), you will be permitted or encouraged to go to the kitchen to see what they have to offer. There will be a large steam table full of pots with different dishes in them. Pick out what looks good and don't be afraid to ask your cook, waiter or host Tea ee -neh aff -toe? You have just asked What is this? Try to remember what it's called until you get back to the table or else you can tell the guy right there Theh -low aff -toe. It will magically appear on your table.
They will also show you their assortment of meats and fishes for grilling. It's usually all pretty fresh. Some of the fish may have been frozen and the squid generally comes from the Atlantic or Monterey California in the summer months. If you see fried squid on a tray don't order it. You don't want anything fried unless it is cooked to order which is generally the case. If I am beginning to intimidate you remember that 90% of the people in restaurants speak English. Greek food is not spicy. If you like spicy food and can't survive without it bring a bottle of your favorite hot sauce.
Sadziki (sahd -zee -key): Yogurt, cucumber and garlic, and salt. Great on fresh Greek bread.
Melitzana Salata (mel -its- zan -na sal- ah -ta): Eggplant salad. Like Babaganoush in the middle east. Eaten on bread.
Tarama Salata (tah -rah -mah sal -ah -tah): Roe of carp. Greek caviar. Don't be afraid to try it. It doesn't taste like you expect. Eaten on bread.
Saganaki (saga -nah -ki): Fried cheese. Sometimes comes with tomato sauce. I like it plain with lemon.
Capari Salata (cap -ah -ri sa -lah -tah): Caper salad. Sifnos specialty. Goes on bread.
Tiro Salata (tee -row sa -lah -tah): Cheese salad. Strong sometimes spicy. Spread on bread.
Olives (ill -yes): A hundred different varieties. Don't say you don't like olives until you have tried them all. You may find one you can't live without.
Casseri (keh -seh -ree): Soft cheese like mozzerela.
Keftedes (kef -teh -des): Deep-fried Meatballs. Other areas have their own variety of keftedes. Sifnos has Revithiakeftedes (reh -veeth -ya -kef- teh -des) made from chickpeas. Santorini has Domatokeftedes (tho -mah -toh -kef -teh -des) made from Tomatoes. There are also Tirokeftedes (tee -row -kef- teh -des) made with cheese and psarokeftedes (psah -row -kef -teh -des) made with fish. They are all delicious.
Spanakopita (span -ah -koh -pee -tah): Spinach pie.
Tiropita (tee -row -pee -ta): Cheese pie.
Kreatopita (kray -ah- toh -pee -tah): Meat pie.
Choriatiki Salata (hoe -ree -ah -tee -key sa- lah -tah): Village salad or what we in America call a Greek Salad, except here you usually don't get lettuce. It generally consists of Tomatoes (tho -mah -tes), Cucumbers (an -goo -ree), Onions (crem -ee -thya), Feta, Oil (la -thee), vinigear (ksee -dee) and olives (ill- yes). Sometimes they leave off the feta so you have to ask for it and they charge you extra. When I order I ask for a hoe-ree-ah-tee-key meh feh-tah, a village salad with feta, just to avoid this. If you want it without any of the above items just tell the waitor: hoe- ris (without) and the name of the item.
Lakanika (la -cah -nee-kah): Cabbage salad.
Horta (hoar -ta): Boiled greens. Very healthy and good with lemon, oil and vinigear.
Vleeta (vlee -tah): Cooked and served like horta but different greens. Restaurants will have one or the other.
Yigendes (yee -gen -des): Big beans like lima beans served either with oil and lemon or with tomatoe sauce.
Fava (fah -vah): Dip or stew made from yellow split peas that can be eaten with a spoon or with bread.
Kolokithikia Vrasta (koh -loh -kee -thak -ya vras -tah): Boiled zuchinni seasoned with oil, lemon and sometimes vinegar.
Patates Tiganites (pa -tah -tes tee -gah -nee -tes): Fried potatoes. Greek french fries blows MacDonalds away. It must be the oil.
Patates sto Fourno (pa -tah -tes toh for -no): Oven roasted potatoes. My favorite dish.
Briam (bree -am): Roast vegetables. Usually contains potatoes, onions, zucchini, eggplant, garlic and tomatoes.
Rivithia (reh -vee -thya): Chickpea stew. Araka (ah -rah -kah): Peas. Cooked with onions and tomatoes.
Stifado (stee -fah -doh): Stew made with lots of small onions, tomatoes and either rabbit (kou -nell -ee), lamb (ar -nee ), or octopus (ock -toh -poh -thee).
Dolmades (doh -mah -des): Grape-leaves stuffed with rice, onions and sometimes ground beef.
Macaronia (mak -ah -ron -ya): Spagetti as we call it. Served with ground beef (meh kee -mah) or tomatoe sauce (sal -tsa). If you want to say without meat say ho-ris kray-ahs.
Mousaka (moo -sah -kah): Baked and similar eggplant parmegeon but not as tomato saucy. Contains eggplant, potatoes, onions, ground beef, oil, cinnamin, and a flour, milk and butter topping.
Pastitsio (pah -sti -tsyo): Like Lasagna but not as saucy. Layered noodles, meat, tomato sauce and topping similar to mousaka but denser.
Anginares (ang -ee -nar -es): Artichokes in lemon and egg sauce with potatoes.
Lamb (arn -nee) Dishes
Fricasse (arn -nee free -cah -seh): Stew made with spinach, lemon, eggs and oil.
Psito (psee -toh): Leg of lamb roasted with potatoes.
Sti Carbona (stee -car -bon -ah): Charcoal grilled.
Pidakia (pie -dye -kya): Ribs grilled.
Chicken (Koh -toh -poo -loh)
Psito or To Fourno (toh four -no): Oven Roasted with potatoes or roast.
Me Saltsa (meh sal -tsah): In red sauce.
Tis skaras (tis ska -ras): On the grill.
Souvlas (sou -vlas): Shishkabob.
Stithos (stee -thos): Breast.
Podi (po -thee): Leg.
Brizoles (bree -zoh -les): Steak.
Khirini (khe -ree -nee): Pork.
Souvlakia (sue -vlak -yah): Shish-cabob.
Loukanika (lou -con -ee -kah): Sausage.
Kokoretsi (ko -ko -ret -see): Entrails of lamb wrapped up and roasted on a spit.
Kontosouvli (konto -sou -vli): Big hunks of pork cooked on a spit.
Astakos (as -tak -kos): Lobster. Mediteranean style no claws.
Garides (ga -ree -des): Shrimp, usually large and grilled.
Xifia (ksee -fee -ya): Swordfish. Grilled steaks or souvlaki.
Barbounia (bar -boon -ya): Red Mullet. Expensive and delicious grilled or fried.
Marides (mar -ree -des): Small deep-fried fish that can be eaten whole, heads bones and all.
Gopes (go -pes): Small tasty inexpensive fish served fried or grilled.
Soupia (soup -ya): Cuttle fish. Served grilled or with a red wine-sauce.
Midia (Me -dia): Mussels, Steamed or in a wine sauce.
Bakaliaro (bak -ah- lar -oh): Fried codfish served with garlic sauce (skor-da-ya).
Galeos (ga -lay -os): Shark is also served this way.
Octopodi (ock -toh -poh -thee): Octopus. Delicious like filet-minion. Can be served grilled (tis ska -ras) or boiled (vrah -stah). Excellent with ouzo by the sea.
Kalamarikia (kah -la -ma -rike -ya): Squid. Frozen is usually fried in small pieces. Fresh is usually fried whole. Both delicious with lemon.
Sardeles (sar -dell -es): Sardines. Can be served fried, or from the can with oil. In Lesvos a special treat is pastes (pas -tess) which means that the sardines were caught that morning, salted on the boat and served raw that night. With ouzo it can't be beat.
Rega (reh -ga): Smoked herring in olive oil. Usually an appetizer.
Psarosoupa (psar -oh -soup -ah): Fish soup. Potatoes, lemon and egg base, can be ordered with or without fish.
Bread is psoh -me. Eggs are av -ga. Omelet is Om-eh -let -ah. Try it with feta or the famous potato omelets (pa -ta -to om -eh -let -ah). Watermellon is kar -poo -zee. Honeydew Melon is peh -pon -ee. Apple is me -lo. Rice pudding is ree -zo -gah -low. Yogurt is ya -oar -ti. With fruit is me fruit -ta. With honey is me meh -lee. Wine is Krah -see. Red is Koh -kee -no. White is as -pro. Kee -ma is homemade from the barrel. Patsa (Pat -sa): Tripe soup. Good for hangovers. Glass is po -tee -ree. Caraffe is ka -ra- fa -kee. Bottle is boo -kal -ee. Water is neh -ro. Menu is cat -ah -lo -go. Check is lo -ga -ree -as -mo. Thank-you is ef -ka -ree -sto.