I was going to save this post for last, but I've had a lot of folks ask me "How was the food?", so here is my answer.
First of all, as a mom that has had to do lots of cooking and cleaning the kitchen, I hesitate to ever complain about a meal that I did not have to prepare or clean-up after! What a fun treat to just eat!
Secondly, keep in mind that this food was cheap! We never spent more than $8 each on a complete meal, and several meals were less than $2.
Thirdly, consider that I do not like raw tomatoes or cucumbers. Those folks that love them might have a different opinion of the food there.
So, with all that in mind, here is my opinion. Do not go to Greece for the food. The "Greek food" that I have had in America was far tastier. I judge how well I liked a dish by whether I am willing to hunt for the recipe and make it myself. There was only one dish on our trip that met that challenge.In general, I thought that the Greeks actually did a better job making Italian dishes (like pizza), French food (crepes), or American food (the hamburgers we had were excellent, but take your own ketchup for fries if you want a reliable supply - it is hard to find).
I took a lot of pictures of food just for fun. I will share some superlatives:
Best meal - Cafe Alme in Anavissos. We shared a huge Caesar salad (hint: great option in Greece when you don't want tomatoes or cucumbers) and a pasta dish that I would gladly purchase the recipe for. Also, eating right on the Aegean with little lights twinkling on the seaside was pretty special.
Worst food - for me it was this classic appetizer we had on our first day. Kind of tasted like a funnel cake filled with feta. It really needed a sauce or something.
But I didn't care too much because of this view from our table:
For Terry, he didn't like this one. The meat tasted weird and there was not the possibility of ketchup.
However, keep in mind that even this lousy meal was eaten with this view. Notice a theme?:
Best presentation - fried cheese in Athens
Sweetest breakfast - this waffle Terry had in Mytilene. It was a little over the top. I had Baklava for breakfast once as well. A sugar rush for sure.
Most interesting-looking breakfast -
Most prevalent food - fries. They were served (minus ketchup) with almost every meal. They even put them on your gyros so that they can become nice and soggy (so eat fast!).
Best snack - I loved these teeny ice cream bars in a shop near our hotel in Athens. They were just 50 cents, and just the right size for a quick treat.
Favorite dessert - Greek yogurt! This did not disappoint! Turns out it is also 10% butterfat, so how could you go wrong?! I would have eaten this for breakfast every day, but it was actually a little hard to find.
Favorite drink: For me it was fruit slushes. It was so hot while we were there, and these tasted so good (all other cold drinks would be lukewarm within a few minutes of walking in that heat). Terry liked the Greek beer. One of the brands was called "Fix", and I kept teasing him that he needed his "Fix" after a hard, hot day working on renovation. He was a little hesitant to buy one while were were walking around and asked both a kiosk owner (who was incredulous when she finally figured out what he was asking - "You mean you cannot do this in your country? ") and a policeman to make sure that it was legal to drink and walk. Here is Terry's favorite kiosk.
Favorite venue (runner-up): Cafe Skiniko's in Panagouda, Lesbos. We ate many meals here! Right on the water and just a 2 min. walk to our hotel.
Favorite venue: this place where we watched sunset over the Acropolis on our last night and watched them light it up after dusk.
Also, while in Greece we ate some ethnic food prepared by refugees, and Mary Beth and I even worked in a kitchen for four days feeding some hungry teenage boys. I was going to include that in this post, but it is already too long.
My conclusion: While you might not want to travel to Greece for the food, the dining experience is world-class! I have never eaten so many meals surrounded by beauty and with such a relaxing vibe. And someone else did the dishes. No complaints here!