Tucked away down a narrow alley crammed with motorbikes and sidewalk-parked cars, you might find a great little taverna called Paradosiako. I say might, because I found it by accident, even though I was looking for it in the first place! The locals don’t always know where these restaurants are – they don’t frequently dine out near where they work.
In any case, Eugenia and Dimitris are the owners, and they do a brisk business with little room for conversation. At lunchtime, I was the only tourist (dining alone!). The rest of the patrons were locals, chatting exuberantly in Greek. The entire time I was there, no one spoke English to me, but I managed to order a beautiful meal and enjoy my view on the tiny restaurant. I wish I could have asked more questions, but I made do. Dimitris just smiled at me, nodded, and brought me my food.
Inside, there were five tables, outside three. The restaurant is perhaps 12 – feet wide and the decor very simple. From my table at the back of the room, I looked out onto two buildings across the street, one modern and efficient, and the other crumbling with pigeons fluttering into open windows.
My food arrived, and I was treated to tarama salata like I’ve never had before. I do believe it was chick-pea based, like hummus, with just enough fish roe to make it salty and a dash of red onion to give it a nice zing. Served with rye bread and drizzled with olive oil, it was a delicious way to start the meal. I followed that with grilled fresh lemon-squeezed kalamarakia, Charred and crispy on the outside and tender and moist inside.
somewhere on Nikodimou or Voulis, Athens