Plateon 15, Keramikos, Athens, 10435
- Recommended for:
- Business travellers, Couples, Foodies, Honeymooners, People watching, Romance
Expert review of Athiri
Young chef Alexandros Kardasis (a protégé of Christoforos Peskias – see P Box) has won stacks of awards since opening this unpretentious but upmarket restaurant in 2007. The short menu – featuring unconventional dishes like vine leaves stuffed with bulgar, lemongrass and mint and slow-roast lamb with lemon tagliatelle – changes every few months. The secret courtyard is a huge part of the appeal.
Several dishes feature Greek products: Cretan olive oil, capers from Santorini, saffron from Kozani. Appetisers are generally better than mains, so I like to order several starters to share, along with a basket of fantastic homemade breads. Standout starters include grilled squid with lemon oil and mixed vegetables in a beetroot and lemon cream sauce. Mains balance hearty meat dishes (mostly cooked sous-vide) and simply cooked fish. Desserts, courtesy of deft pastry chef Theodore Moysides, are not to be missed. The exclusively Greek wine list (apart from a couple of South African options) is an excellent sampler of regional varieties.
The marinated duck leg with pear puree is typical of unusual pairings of ingredients that work surprisingly well. The signature dessert – a trio of crème brulee (Greek coffee, orange and cardamom, and caramel) – is sublime.
Buzzing and informal. The modern décor is unfussy. The secluded, softly lit garden is a blissful oasis on baking summer nights. The slightly soulless interior can feel a bit cramped, especially at weekends.
Although the place seems to be perennially understaffed, service is competent, cheerful and unhurried. Waiters are happy to explain any unfamiliar ingredients.
Athiri helped put the edgy neighbourhood of Keramikos on the culinary map in 2007. A daring move – the area once known for its cheap bordellos and low-life residents (both of which still exist in abundance) has since become synonymous with quirkily cool bars and restaurants.
€40-50 a head.
Anywhere as long as it's outside in the glorious overgrown garden. There's a separate smoking room.
More information on Athiri:
- Price guide:
- Greek, Mediterranean
- Plateon 15, Keramikos, Athens, 10435
- +30 210 346 2983
- Opening times:
- 8pm-1.30am daily. Also open for Sunday lunch. Closed Mon.
- Accepts Credit Cards:
- Free tags / Keywords:
- award-winning, Garden, Gourmet, dinner a deux