Experience Culinary Delights
Greek myths and legends refer to the Gods dining on ‘ambrosia’ and ‘nectar’. There are several episodes in Greek myth in which ambrosia is used by the gods and goddesses as a sort of balm, to confer grace or even immortality (in the case of mortals) onto the recipient.
Although the actual food and drink these words refer to are debated, they are terms we still use today to conjure up images of food and drink that tantalises the taste-buds. Fitting though that these expressions have origins in Greece, as too does the term ‘gastronomy’, because the country has much to offer the palate that craves a taste of luxury.
Basic ingredients that constitute the essence of the healthy Greek diet – fresh local grown vegetables, herbs and spices and olive oil – combined with the culinary skills of master-chefs ensures that Greek restaurants are capable of serving up some of the finest dishes in the world. Main influences are either home-grown or inspired by the country’s eastern and western neighbours.
One thing to note however is that locally inspired dishes are more likely to draw their quality not from fancy presentation and lavish garnishes, but from the richness of the local ingredients – local fruits and vegetables, fresh seafood, herbs and spices and distinctive olive oil flavours – the chefs have to work with.
Often the finest dishes are deceptively simplistic in appearance and draw heavily on the Greek tradition of paradisiako (traditional) food, albeit infused with a touch of culinary innovation.
Of course the dining environment adds to the exceptional dining experience, and Greece is not lacking when it comes to providing the kind of views and ambiance that can turn the best meal into a heavenly one. Below are a handful of restaurants that have carved out culinary reputations for being some of the finest that Greece has to offer.
Off the mainland, the Greek islands have their own fair share of restaurants where the food and the location have earned the establishments divine reputations.