Archive for January 2013

From the archives: our review of Taverna Kyclades, Astoria, Queens

January 30, 2013

This post originally appeared in May 2010.

Above: Grilled calamari at Taverna Kyclades, Astoria, Queens, wilted Swiss chard, and a “peasant” (village) salad served with toasty, crusty bread, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt. The food is fresh and delicious, the prices more than reasonable, and the long wait for a table is worth it.

Even Eric Asimov, wine writer for The New York Times, had to wait 45 minutes to get a table at the popular Taverny Kyclades in Astoria, Queens. “And I couldn’t have been happier with our wine,” he wrote of the Boutari Santorini, made from 100% Assyrtiko grapes grown on the island of Santorini. “Light, minerally and inexpensive. It went beautifully with the seafood, and was the sort of light white that is absolutely refreshing but still offers something to think about.”

There was an hour and a half wait for a table of four when we visited yesterday evening but well worth the anticipation, especially considering the reasonably priced food and the super friendly waitstaff.

From its sidewalk outdoor dining to the bustling dining room where Greek and English are spoken, this family-friendly restaurant is THE place to be on a beautiful spring evening in the heart of one of the most vibrant Greek communities in the U.S.

Entrées and even the small “peasant” salad were enough for 2 persons, making our tab even more reasonably priced. Boutari Moschofilero and Santorini are served by the bottle.

From the archives: our review of the superb Petros in Manhattan Beach CA

January 24, 2013

This post originally appeared in December 2010.

This week, the Boutari Social Media Project blogmaster finally made it to Petros in Manhattan Beach, California, where owner Petros Benekos has crafted an irresistible pairing of “Hellenic and California cuisines.”

His fresh fruit salads, like the cantaloupe salad above, are sourced from his own garden at his ranch in Los Olivos, California. When in season, you’ll find figs and peaches (from what my server told me, it would be worth the trip back for either!). The ingredients were fresh and delicious but the thing that took it over the top was the drizzling of Greek honey, sourced especially by Petros for his restaurants (he has one in Los Olivos now, too).

According to my server, the bees responsible for this ambrosia feed on lavender flowers. “I could drink that stuff,” she exhorted, rolling her eyes in feigned delight. Waiter, waiter: I’ll have what she’s having!

I loved the Horiatiki flatbread with avocado to give it classic California touch…

You can imagine how much gyro I’ve eaten this year! While I’m still going to award my “best gyro of the year” to the Houston Greek Festival (where the Greek mama’s touch and love just gave it that extra special something), I can’t conceal that I INHALED Petros’ excellent interpretation of this classic Hellenic-American favorite. I don’t know how he does it, but it was light and devoid of the greasiness that weighs down so much of the gyro served in this country. Fast food can be so good when it’s prepared with some thought and care. I loved it.

I regret that I didn’t order it but the nice ladies sitting next to me allowed me to photograph their lamb tacos with sweet potato fries. How fun is that?

It’s not too much of a stretch to picture Tracie P and me sipping some Moschfilero by the sea in the very near future. 😉

—Jeremy Parzen (blogmaster)

451 Manhattan Beach Blvd #b110
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
(310) 545-4100

Highly recommended…

Boutari featured in the Pappas Post (@PappasPost), a leading resource for Greek Americans

January 17, 2013

greg pappas greekBoutari was featured this week in one of our favorite websites/blogs, the newish Pappas Post, a online magazine founded by the dynamic Greek-American publisher Greg Pappas (left).

Click here for the article.

When he launched this wonderful and much-needed editorial project in the spring of last year, Pappas wrote that its goal was “to create a news, content, and information portal focusing on the world through ‘blue and white’ tinted sunglasses…. The world through a Greco-centric lens. A site for all things Greek.”

We here at the Boutari blog were simply thrilled to see that the wines were featured on this dynamic, vital, and vibrant online resource.

How to pronounce Naoussa (Greek Grape Name & Appellation Pronunciation Project)

January 7, 2013

Naoussa enologist Vasilis Georgiou pronounces Naoussa for our camera.

If you haven’t checked out the Greek Grape Name and Appellation Pronunciation Project here at, here’s the link.

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