An ‘ouzeri’ or ‘ouzeria’ is a type of Greek tavern which serves ‘ouzo’ (Greek liquor) and ‘mezedes’ or light snacks.
Kos is one of Greek’s Dodecanese islands in the southeastern Aegean Sea, is a group of Greek islands known for their medieval castles, Byzantine churches, beaches and ancient archaeological sites.
A few days ago I met up for late lunch at Kos Greek Ouzeri with a fellow foodie friend who introduced me to Chef Mats Loo and Chef Yolanda Naluz. Now, if you are into authentic cuisines especially Greek, Kos is one of the best places in the metro to experience. Your palate, with just that first bite will tell you that not only do they use the freshest ingredients, but their cooking methods are genuinely different. Here’s my food adventure at Kos Greek Ouzeri.
‘Mezedes’ are small dishes served before the main dish and eaten with freshly baked bread. Kos uses ingredients straight from source and their breads are freshly baked every day. For me these can not only tickle the palate before a main meal, but it can be taken as a snack as well. I can eat this almost every day, its healthy and they give almost unlimited freshly-baked bread re-fills.
I tried these ‘mezedes’: ‘Tzatziki’ (Php175) – yogurt cucumber with garlic, dill, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon; ‘Tyrokafteri’ (Php170) – feta cheese combined with roasted red bell peppers; Sun-dried Tomatoes and Capers (Php155) – a combination of cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, olives and capers; ‘Hummus’ (Php165) – cooked chick peas with tahini, garlic, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. They also have ‘Kalamaria Toursi’ (Php155), ‘Kolokithakia Ke Melitzanes’ (Php 195), ‘Kroketes Patatas’ (Php155) and ‘Soutzoukakia Smyrneika’ (php165), etc.
‘Kos Salata’ (Php350)- mixed greens with dried figs, caramelized nuts, sun-dried tomatoes, grapes and cheese tossed with honey grape vinaigrette. The mix of tartness of the dried figs, sweetness of the caramelized nuts and grapes went well with the generous serving of cheese with the honey grape vinaigrette served on the side. My first thought after a few bites was that they gave generous servings of the cheese. And its really delicious cheese which is really something you don’t experience, much less expect from restaurants these days.
Kos serves fresh ‘salatas’ or ‘salads’ made with not just any oil, but extra virgin olive oil. the quality of the extra virgin olive oil is important in Greek cuisine because any change in quality will render a different taste to the dish. They also have ‘Tono Salata’ (Php320) and ‘Salata Horiatiki’ (Php300)
‘Grilled Salmon Fillet with Ladolemono’ (Php385) – grilled herb marinated salmon fillet served with roasted vegetables and lemon oil.
If you’ve read most of my recipes or ‘food experiments’ or follow me on Instagram (@urmajesty_sire) then you know of my ‘salmon obsession.’ What a delight it was to taste Kos’ melt-in-your-mouth-goodness salmon (and took some to-go also). Chef Yolanda Naluz shared that the salmon is marinated in their special combination of herbs then cooked (with its skin) in extra virgin olive oil. They also have other seafood dishes like ‘Psari Plaki’ and ‘Greek Fish Stew’ on the menu.
More after the jump
‘Greek Yogurt’ (Php150) – authentic Greek yogurt served with spoon sweets, caramelized nuts and drizzled with honey.
To cap off the delicious food adventure, traditional desserts are in order. I had a taste of ‘Greek Yogurt’ which I recommend to opt for in lieu of ice cream or cheesecake every once in a while. For me I can have this or ‘baklava’ as a light snack with Greek coffee especially craving for something sweet that’s fresh, authentic and healthy.
‘Baklava’ (Php210) – sweet layers of crunchy phyllo pastry filled with chopped nuts and sweetened syrup. Now if that description isn’t mouthwatering enough or if it made you crave, then dash to Kos right now and try this nutty, crunchy, sweet and authentic Greek dessert.
‘Greek Coffee’ (Php125) – if you’re a true blue coffee addict or curious about different kinds of coffee, then you must try Kos’ coffee fare. I had their ‘Greek coffee’ which pairs well with any of their authentic Greek desserts. Truth be told as a coffee drinker even before my teens, I’d like to have this every morning.
‘Cardamom & Lemon flavored Iced Tea’ (Php75) and ‘Greek Lemonade’ (Php75) – now as Chef Yolly has shared to me, they didn’t want the usual iced tea or lemonade to go with their authentic Greek menu. So they tried and tested several concoctions using mint w/ cucumber, tarragon and basil aside from cardamom to come out with distinct and signature beverages.
So there you go, that’s my foodie adventure at Kos Greek Ouzeri. They are located at Ground Floor, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City.