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Eating Greek in Greece

by Kristy Alpert

Oct 25, 2014

Santorini © Noluma | iStock

Destination

The Greeks are a passionate people, and there’s nothing that gets these Mediterraneans more excited than anything surrounding good food and strong drinks. Greeks are enthusiastic about their meals, and why wouldn’t they be with some of the highest-quality ingredients being produced in all parts of the country. From start to finish, here are tips on eating Greek in Greece.

 

Start with Metaxa

Although most people think ouzo is the traditional drink for Greeks, this smooth, brown spirit is actually one of the most popular drinks for locals and is a traditional way to start a meal, either as a cocktail (Metaxa tonic) or served neat.

 

Dip your food

There’s no shame in double dipping in Greece. Whether it’s fresh pita bread in olive oil, kolokythoanthoi (fried stuffed zucchini flowers) dipped in tirokafteri (whipped feta) or kroketes, crusty bread and saganaki (fried yellow cheese) dipped in tzatziki.

 

Eat your veggies

In the past, Greeks didn’t eat much meat due to religious fasts and economic reasons. Although times have changed, vegetables still play the main role in Greek cuisine, with eggplant and zucchini acting as main courses, alongside fresh, seasonal salads of tomatoes lightly drizzled in olive oil and blanketed with a thick slice of feta.

 

Finish with a yogurt

Greek yogurt in Greece doesn’t taste like anything you can buy from a store, no matter what John Stamos may have you believe. Desserts in Greece range from finikia cookies and baklava to halva and loukoumades, but the most traditional way to finish a meal is with a plate of yogurt drizzled with honey and walnuts.

 

End with Metaxa

A Greek meal comes full circle with a final glass of Metaxa. If you can get your hands on the Private Reserve, consider yourself lucky. Otherwise opt for the 12 Star Metaxa for the perfect finish to a traditional meal.

 

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