Anestis Taverna is a traditional family-run affair serving elegant Greek favourites that range from laid-back fare to more classic dinner meals.
Taking up a big corner spot in Greektown, this restaurant feels a bit more formal than many of the quick stop-shops serving Greek food, while still offering a comfortable setting for a casual meal.
Accentuated by decor typical of your local Mediterranean restaurants, the first thing you'll notice at Anestis is its open kitchen at the front, where chefs cook up daily specials which are available to-go at the takeout counter.
All the meals here have a homemade feel, with a roster of past and current well-seasoned chefs who've brought traditional recipes from Sparta and Athens to Anestis' menu.
The best seat here is definitely on the patio, which sits beneath an awning that retracts in the evening to catch that cool breeze.
There's a few starters that come highly recommended here, like the saganaki ($14), where pan-seared Kefalotiri cheese is flambéed by your table for a show of pyrotechnics.
The brick of feta cheese deep fried in phyllo ($14) is a luxurious treat that can be eaten as either an app or a dessert.
Drizzled in honey and sprinkled with sesame seeds, it won't disappoint—at the end of the day you can't go wrong with deep fried cheese.
Entrées here all come with a lemon halves presented in very festive, very Greek decorative wraps. You'll get one with your dish of grilled octopus ($26) which comes marinated, grilled, and with a side of three sauces.
It's perfectly cooked, and a sizeable serving goes with any of its accompanying trio of sauces: a spicy cheese dip, an eggplant dip, and one made from fish roe.
A towering plate of arugula salad ($14) with goat cheese and figs is a sweet leafy dish tossed in a housemade fig vinaigrette.
One of the most popular main entrées is the lamb souvlaki ($20 for a small, $24 for a large).
Lamb is marinaded in a blend of spices for a satisfying herb-y mix, and comes with a side of rice and perfectly cooked potatoes.
While the grilled whole fish is a good secondary option (Anestis brings in fresh fish often) we go for a gyro ($7) instead which comes with a side of delicious, crispy fries topped with feta cheese.
This hefty things comes packed with meat, tzatziki, tomatoes, and french fries. If you wrap it tightly enough in your hands you might actually manage to fit the whole thing in your mouth.
A good spot to go with large groups, you can keep it casual at Anestis or opt for dishes that are cooked to impress.