28 August, 2011

10% Tax Increase at Meals at & from Restaurants

From 1 September, the VAT on the food at restaurants and bought from the take away shops will be up from 13% to 23%.

Accordingly the restaurants should (& are entitled to) increase the price tag by 10%, although not all can afford to do so considering the current economic climate. Nevertheless, many people would refain from eating outside at least for a month or 2 until they forget that the tax has been increased.

It is totally stupid to increase tax by staggering 10% on something we can easily avoid to buy. The state income won't increase by 10% and it is well possible that it decreases by a few %. At the same time, the unemployment rate of restaurant workers will increases and the state will collect even less income tax. It is a real loss loss situation.

And evidently most of the people in the government and the Troika know what is going to happen, but still they are doing it.

This is one of the most predictable failures, but the truth is the less predictable failures are also going on, while the top politicians, bankers, technocrats should be well aware that they are not doing any good to the country.

Where are they taking us?

When we went to Glyfada last time, Kiliza restaurant in Biftekoupoli was closed down as well as some others.

Ex Kiliza

The street can hardly be called Biftekoupoli any more. Now it is just a narrow pedestrian street with some restarants. What a depressing view.

20 August, 2011

La Pasteria @ Glyfada

On Saturday evening, we dropped in at La Pasteria in Glyfada.

La Pasteria is a very successful franchise brand of Italian restaurants. I don't usually do big franchises, because the food tend to be imparsonal, but on this occasion I thought it would be nice to find out what was the reason of success.

When we sat down, we were asked if we wanted water and bread basket. It is good that you can say "no", as in many restaurants, bread and water are obligatory order.

There were 3 small pieces of bread in the basket. I don't know how it was supposed to divede between 2 of us. The dip tasted like harb mayonnaise. The olives were good.

Hubby feel always ashamed to order small number of plates, so he ordered also a starter. It was aranchini (croquettes) of mushroom risotto.

I wondered if they recycled left over mushroom risotto in this way.

Not impressed.

Hubby ordered a strange mixture of pasta (rigatoni, tortellini etc) with cream, chichen, bacon etc baked in oven.

This is very Greek, but would be a sacrilege to Italians. Hubby liked it, as he is Greek, but I felt ashamed only seeing it. And I thought I could make this with the leftover pastas in the fridge.

I ordered sort of sauteed pork fillet in lemon sauce with capers served with penne.

But it looked more like the penne served with pieces of meat. The penne were undercooked and were still hard. It was not "al dente", just "not cooked enough". The flavour was undistinguished and I would call it a total desaster, if I had cooked something like this at home.

The total bill was more than 40 Euro together with a glass of beer.

I completely failed to discover the seacret of their success.

Fruit Pants

Fruit Punch







15 August, 2011

Deserted Athens

This year, 15 August is Monday and and even those who do not have a long vacation are enjoying at least a "tri-imero (3-day)" leave.

And in any case, around 15 August, Athens is almost empty, as most of the Athenians leave for somewhere else for vacation.

So those who remain in town, like us, can enjoy empty Athens where without traffic jam and full of parking lots. We thought it was hard to miss the opportunity and went to Thissio for a coffee.

We stopped at our usual Syn Athina.

Syn Athina

Not many people, but not empty either. There was quite a lot of Greek youth. Can you see the fans with water spray? These bring a nice chill.

A waitress spoke to us in English: How are you? To which we replied: "Fine eimaste". And we all laughed.


A view of Acropolis from my seat.

A frappe & a freddo espresso.


And a waffle with sour cherry preserve & sauce served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The waffle was light & crunchy type. I prefer heavier waffle, but Hubby said he preferred this way.

Then we walked toward Monastiraki.

We found that Kuzina restaurant is offering 4 course menu for 20 Euro.

Personally, this restaurant is too expensive for what they are offering. However, 20 Euro for 4 courses is a good deal. Why don't you try, if you have not yet done? (I saw this on 14 August 2011 and don't know until when this offer continues).

And in Monastiraki Square we saw a new terrace cafe (do you see the roof top of the building at the centre of the photo?). We went closer to see what it was.

It turned out to be a new hotel called "A For Athens". The roof top might not be exclusive to the hotel guests. We will try at the next occasion.

A For Athens

We saw some new restaurants along Adrianou as well. It is nice to see that people keep on investing in Athens.

06 August, 2011

Vacation in Pelion

Yesterday we returned from 6 day long vacation in Pelion.

Ferry tickets being so expensive and we having bought a car last autumn, we chose somewhere we could reach by road.

Pelion might be a less known destination to foreigners, while to Greeks it is probably one of the top, admitting it is rather a from-autumn-to-spring resort.

Pelion is well known for these traditional residential buildings called 'archondiko', often used as hotel/hostel.


I would have loved to stay one of these buildings, but Hubby HAD To stay by the sea, while these traditional buildings are in mountain villages. So we stayed at normal "Rooms".

In Pelion, there are many beaches. This one below is Agii Sananda, probably one of the best beaches in Pelion.

Agii Saranda Beach

It was a beautiful beach, but only for the beaches, I don't think it is worth driving 5 hours to come to Pelion.

Although the beaches were a bit disappointing (maybe because we had too high an expectation), we enjoyed very much the food in Pelion.


The dish above is Spetzofai (stew of Pelion sausage and peppers). Besides, we loved also galotyri, stuffed zucchini flowers, stuffed sour cabbage rolls, sweet pepper pie, etc etc. Everything was fantastic.

I would go back to Pelion for food, if not for beach!