By Marietta Papathanasiou

You are strolling down the narrow streets of Fira in a sunny, hot afternoon. You are craving for something to eat, but you don’t want to eat too much. What would a Greek do?

In Greek culture, good company and relaxation come first, and food is a closer second. Even on a tight budget, a group of friends would never miss the tavern, but instead of a luxurious meal they would rather have a bottle of wine and lots of “mezedes”, small, tasty dishes of anything you can imagine. They might even find flavors they have never tasted before, as it all comes down to the imagination of the cook! So why not do it our way- no need to rush, just relax and enjoy what is served before you…

You are off to a great start with feta cheese in pastry leaves with vinsanto wine and a plate of grilled mushrooms, a match made in heaven.  Why not try a light and savory dish of sun-dried fried tomatoes with tzatziki? You should definitely not miss “fava”, a Santorinian split-pea puree, accompanied with onions and caper.  Also, tomato balls, a local recipe of the island or even crispy zucchini croquettes. As far as salads go, there is always the hearty Greek salad, or, if you are feeling more adventurous, try “Dakos”,  which, in its simplest form  is barley rusk with tomato and feta cheese, great for a hot summer day. Not full yet? Ask for the Santorinian white eggplant and you can’t go wrong!

Something to drink maybe?  If you are not a friend of strong alcohol you should probably stay away from ouzo! Try a glass of cold beer instead or some local white wine which is also served cold.  You might even want a glass of vinsanto wine – it’s usually served after lunch, as a digestive, but hey, it’s a matter of taste!

Great food, beautiful music, hot summer nights and a long talk with your friends on a Greek island.  What more could you ask for? Well, maybe for a shot of home-made “rakomelo”, on the house!


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