Written by on April 11, 2012 in I Eat Greece, I Eat...Out with 0 Comments

(oinopnevmata.gr) – Ermoupoli, Syros, Greece

How I heard of this place: I met a lovely, young family on the nine-hour ferry ride from Santorini to Syros, via nearly every one of the Cyclades, who lived in Syros 10 years ago. I asked for her recommendations for a dinner spot and she suggested we walk towards the Town Hall (Magistrate) and make our way to the right. We did just that, and stumbled upon the most quaint and picturesque, cozy, little, marble street with an ivy trellis, and chose our favorite spot.

Type of cuisine: The wine and spirits of traditional Greek fare.

Ambiance: One of the most cozy streets upon which we could fall was that of Ermoupoli’s Εμμανουήλ Ροΐδη (Emmanuel Roidis). An outdoor, marble-tiled pedestrian street lined with cafe and restaurant, one immediately after the other, sail-shaped tarps overhead to line the space between which trees cannot offer shade. Chairs and tables with colorful tablecloths and settings added to the already vibrant and spirited alleyway. The seating for our choice, hunter green tablecloths with sunny, yellow runners covered tables on that main path, as well as around the corner, down an even smaller marble-tiled alleyway. The stone walls accented by a Mediterranean blue door, our servers seated just two tables away, rushed inside to grab menus for the two of us.

From their website, translated into English, “We wait all year round, in a quiet and friendly environment. All you need is the companionship and the fun!”

What I ordered: One litre of water (€1.50) and tzatziki (€4) and Meatballs (€5.50) with fries to start, we stopped there…for now. After savoring our appetizers over a period of time, without being rushed, we were nearing the end of our starters when our server returned to see if she could have the kitchen staff start our main entrees. We were thrilled by her thoughtfulness and requested her recommendation, upon which we based our orders: I chose the Kebab Giaourtlou (€9.50), kebab, topped with roasted epplant and tomato drenched in yogurt and garlic sauce, dusted with paprika and served alongside warm, freshly baked quarters-cuts of pita bread. Of the chicken options she highly encouraged, Chris selected Chicken with Cream and Mushrooms (€8.50) served alongside home-cut fries and rice, flakes of fresh parsley as the colorful cherry on top.

What I loved: The creamy mushroom sauce, especially with the fries was dreamy, but it was the giaourtlou that stole the show! The delicious, well-seasoned and perfectly cooked, juicy kebab, topped with thinly sliced roasted vegetables and creamy Greek yogurt. I’ll eat that, again and again.

Why I loved it: One reason, among numerous others, is that, when I was taking pictures of our surroundings, one of the diners asked our server to point out to me the street sign overhead. Whereas most Greek establishments did not allow for pictures to be taken in their spaces, this one not only encouraged it, but made it a point to direct our attention to the marble street sign stuck in the corner of stone building, noting the name of the street (Odos, is all that I could make out clearly), set in that same pace in 1850. Another of the many reasons to love Oinopnevmata is the dessert, offered on the house, of homemade apple cake crumble.

Cost: Average (€6-€9.50 per entree)

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