Dinning at the "Ioannis" Restaurant
Trip Start Apr 24, 2011
79Trip End Ongoing
The "Ioannis" is a Signature Gourmet Restaurant in Athens located on the 7th floor of the Royal Olympic hotel. The rooftop restaurant is one of the several highlights of the hotel and the views from up there are stunning! The Acropolis seems so close –a breathtaking backdrop to an evening cocktail or a romantic meal.
The chef Mr. Kosta Tsigas works miracles of art and taste in his cuisine. I was talking with the Grand Master of the restaurant Mr. Sanidas who is one of the many professionals here and I was told that the chef uses only fresh raw materials combining old traditional Greek recipes with modern conception. This modern version is really promising and I have friends who live in Athens who tell me they love to come here and experiment the new tastes
Through the many years of travelling and after visiting more than 37 countries, I have learnt to appreciate good food. I have become a food travel enthusiast and a good restaurant critic with much taste and experience. You see, with experience comes confidence. Through travelling I seek out and sample all cuisines even if I come across some weird ones. Well, here at the “Ioannis” is all Greek cuisine and it is another reason for me to be happy.
We decided to taste different wines depending on the dish each time instead of ordering a bottle. We relied completely on the sommelier Mr. Dimitri Sanidas who was explaining each time what the different wine represents and of course its origin.
Our starter included virgin olive oil, humus, Greek olives and another amazing sauce with saffron which I cannot remember. The bread brought to us was grilled and sprinkled with virgin olive oil and oregano. A cherry accompanied the above starter. (8.50 euros)
Instead of a salad this time we had a soup each. I picked the pumpkin, artichoke and shrimp soup with saffron for 18 euros. I really loved it!
My husband had the wild mushroom, sour wheat and vegetable soup for 12 euros. It had a velvet smooth exceptional taste and the wild mushrooms were really so many!
We shared the next two dishes
I loved the grilled shrimp dish with fried tomato accompanied by a spicy vegetable sauce. This I did not want to share! It was nicely presented and we accompanied the above two dishes with a Sauvignon Blanc wine coming from Drama (Techni Alipias) 9 euros per glass.
I found the roast rainbow trout with black and red lentil and oven baked cabbage dish interesting but I would not die for it – my husband liked it though! 38 euros.
The next two dishes were really exceptional. I had a modern conception of “Mousaka” which was chicken with artichoke and eggplant, lemon and saffron béchamel and baby onions. My husband had the “Black Angus” beef tenderloin, spinach cream, roasted potatoes and beef jous for 42 euros. We accompanied the above two dishes with a Merlot glass of wine from Chile.
We finished our amazing dinner outing with something sweet
Both desserts were nicely presented and I urge you to taste them if you come here. 12 euros each.
Because of the festive season I had a look on the Christmas menu. Christmas Dinner costs 50 euros (wines are excluded) and on New Year's Eve the restaurant offers a unique VIP New Year’s Gala. It might seem kind of expensive but it will surely be something exceptional and really special. The cost is 130 euros per person excluding wines and spirits.
I found the cuisine interesting and quite creative. Everything brought to us was fresh and tasty. I cannot say that dining here is that cheap but it is worth spending a bit more from time to time if you can afford it. I am sure the restaurant won’t disappoint you. I highly recommend it not only for the Festive season but also for any special occasion.
In all I can say that from the style and ambience of this elegant dining spot, to the delivery of unparalleled service, dedication to detail makes dining here an experience you will always cherish. The same passion is applied to sourcing fine quality ingredients and in the design of exciting new twists to contemporary Greek cuisine. Keep the good work up guys!!