Who doesn’t love Greek food? When we were invited to join Chef Peter Christopolous at Namos alongside Montreal’s top foodie bloggers and media to sample his modern twist on tapas, we broke some plates and OPA’d out loud.
If you’re new to the Mile End foodie scene, Namos was previously “Vegera” until Peter decided to take his parents’ place and spice things up in 2012 with a revamped menu, fresh décor and a new name. The restaurant serves Greek fare and local favourites crafted from the freshest ingredients all in a laid-back and cozy vibe that goes hand-in-hand with the Mile End atmosphere.
A notable fact: Since the area of Southern Greece where Peter’s father was born is best known for olive, lemon and fig trees, the Christopolous family decided to produce its own olive oil, which is shipped in small quantities to Montreal for use at very special events… and we were lucky enough to taste it tonight. Let us tell you, the quality of authentic olive oil can be smelled from a mile away, what a difference!
Now on to the menu and some of our choice dishes that you absolutely must try when you pop on over:
Sautéed zucchini balls stuffed with feta and herbs using Aunt Mary’s recipe. We never met Aunt Mary, but ohh wee, these were just too good! Crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside, a big hit at our table end.
Onto more balls, which seemed to be a consistent theme of the night; this time it’s their famous Greek meatballs, literally drenched in homemade tomato sauce. The meat was perfectly done and the sauce tasted like something straight out of our granny’s big ol’ pot. Mmm, mmm, good!
For the healthier bunch, they skipped the fried calamari and served us the grilled one topped with garlic, lemon, dill, salt and pepper. This dish really took us back to our last trip to the island of Naxos, where we had the best damn calamari ever.
Now to a classic that everyone is familiar with, the classic spanakopita made with a feta and spinach blend wrapped in phyllo. No frills here, just a good tasting crispy dish to pass the time.
The star of the night had to be the homemade loukoumades, or honey balls if you prefer. The entire table threw themselves on these as if it was the last dish offered to humankind. These light dumplings were glazed in honey and topped off with Nutella and a side of vanilla ice cream – need we say more?
So, if you are in the mood for a chill night out, enjoying some Greek classics with a twist in a joyful environment (Greeks would not have it any other way), then come by and say ‘hi’ to Peter. He might even take you on a tour of the back kitchen and show you why he is the master of the grill!