Food and drink
The thing to order here is patsas (tripe soup). Allegedly, it wards off hangovers. Tin carafes of acrid wine might just defeat the purpose, however. There are lots of other (mostly meat-based) dishes too, wilting in display cases under the neon lights. You can just stumble into the kitchen, peer into the tin pots, and point at whatever takes your fancy. It may not be the most delicious meal of your life, but it will certainly be one of the most memorable.
I don’t have the stomach for tripe – all those unidentified objects flying around in the soup make me squeamish. So I usually order the lemony lamb fricassee or comforting chickpea soup.
The clientele is straight out of central casting: a gaggle of transvestites, moustachioed taxi drivers, bug-eyed clubbers, and bedraggled ladies of the night. The lights are bright and the set-up is basic.
The long-suffering waiters have seen it all and they aren’t fazed by anything.
The whiff of congealed blood hits you as you enter the meat market. The recent addition of TV screens showing trashy Greek pop videos have somewhat spoiled the old-time ambience. I guess you can’t trust butchers with interior design. The main entrance is on Athinas Street, close to Ommonia Square. It’s a fairly dodgy area late at night, so be alert.
About €10 for a bowl of soup and a beer.
Tables to book
- Backpackers / Students
- Seasoned travellers
- Stag / hen parties