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Celebrating Democracy!: Lunch at Papa Cristos!

Dommy! | Jul 5, 200503:35 AM

I hope all the hounds had a wonderful fourth of july!… I spent mine doing all sorts of real patriotic things. I went to see a Jazz band, a ball game, and although I loved my home grilled hamburger, actually, my favorite patriotic meal of the weekend was from Papa Cristos… YES!! Greek food is patriotic! After all, democracy was invented by the Greeks! And in order to celebrate our wonderful system of democracy, a group of hounds and I went down to Papa Cristos, one of the best Greek restaurants in the city!

Located on the corner of Normandie and Pico, it’s right across the street from Saint Sofia Greek Orthodox Cathedral (Which is worth a visit on its own it’s so beautiful!) and gets flooded every Sunday after services… so you know it has to be good.

Papa Cristos is not a full service restaurant, it’s a dining room that is attached to one side of their grocery story, C&K Trading, and attached to their other side is the kitchen area where you order your food. They give you a number, you take some complimentary olives (Which are EXCELLENT) and they bring you your food (They also have patio seating outside! Which is nice for a small group, since the dining room can get a little stuffy)

Being hounds, we tore through the menu… here’s what I tried (I’m sure we ordered more than this!)

* Sizzling Feta and Tomatoes – The warm feta was just so yummy, and the tomatoes, perfectly done. The only thing I missed was some rice, so I could mash those tomatoes into! Hmmmm…

* Dolmas – Very tender leaves, not woody at all… really good!

* Marides – Little Fried Fish: I love the fried Smelts at Quality Seafood, I call them my fish chips because they are like French fries… but made of fish!! These, I think were even better… they had more pronounced fishy taste and were a bit meater! LOVED these…

* Grilled Baby Octopus: I just had to order this, as I LOVE octopus, and this did not dispoint. They were charry and flavorful, but at the same time very tender…. This honestly was my favorite thing, and if you are an Octopus fan (Even if you don’t like greek food!) you must try this!

* Grilled Eggplant: Several pieces of thick eggplant. Beautiful and perfectly done. This dish makes you forget that you had order it at a counter!

* Mushrooms Commandaria: Whole white mushrooms, sauted in a slight wine sauce. Just like the eggplant, just PEFECT! These Mushrooms were WORLDS better than those I’ve had at Mortons!

* Hummus and Pita: This hummus was great flavorwise, but I thought a little too watery. I like to make my own hummus at home using just chickpea puree, olive oil and LOTS of lemon juice. Their warm pita however was amazing. Toasty at the ends, warm and soft… Excellent!!!

* Gyro: My reason for the trip! My perfect way to celebrate the birth of our wonderful country’s!! And it totally did it justice! Huge and full of meat and other toppings. I had less than a ¼ of it (We hounds share!), and I was completely happy just having that little taste… Hmmm…

* Falafel: These I didn’t like too much because they were rather herbal. But again, they were perfectly done, crisp, fluffy and not dry at all…

* Kefta – Spiced meat patties: These looked like those little sausages that come with egg mcmuffins… and they were even more heavenly! I LOVED these!! I’m defiantly going to order these on my next visit! :)

* Rack of Lamb- I really liked it. Thin ribs with tender, flavorful, charry meat (not gamey at all). But because they are probably done in batches, it’s cooked all the way through, which some have noted before here on the board and at our dinner. No pink in that meat at all sadly…

And that was all my stomach could handle… ESPECIALLY since we each received complimentary Baklava (Coupon on the website!) Which actually was the Baklava of my childhood (My father’s office is nearby and the owner of the company is Greek! So they get lots of Papa Cristo’s catering!). Denser, but drier than most Baklava out there, it was still as wonderful as I remember it!

I’m sure I’m missing a few dishes (I think someone ordered the Souvlaki) and some dishes came with Greek Salad. Hopefully one of the hounds can chime in for some of their thoughts…

Once again, it was another successful meeting of the hounds (Including some new faces to the group!) and we all left, stuffed and happy that a country that created democracy, also made some absolutely tasty chow! :)


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