Owners Antonia Sapounakas and Nicos Gregoriou are set to introduce Athens Tavern, their contemporary Greek restaurant, to Queens this Wednesday, October 17th. The pair are so passionate about authentic cooking, they’ve brought Michelin-starred chef Yianni Baxevanis over from Greece. Far from the forests of Athens where he forages his own herbs, Baxevanis has created a rustic selection to highlight these imported, hand-picked seasonings.
The 85-seat spot is decorated with burgundy painted walls, wood floors and Greek murals. Homemade bread, fresh anchovies and marinated cherry tomatoes are courtesy of the house at this warm, Astoria eatery.
Appetizers include Mizythra cheese with orange and rose sauce, grilled sausages, and steamed mussels with fresh herbs. Baxenavis’ signature dishes include rabbit with bergamot and mashed sweet potatoes; baby lamb casserole with lemon sauce; and wild greens. Instead of the standard by the pound issue, Athens Tavern sells its whole fish at a fixed price of $24.
Co-owner Nicos Gregoriou, an avid hunter and fisherman, plans to install "Game Fridays" on which venison, grouse, pheasant, bass and wild turkey specials will be available to diners. You may just catch a glimpse of Gregoriou traipsing through the dining room with his prey.
Address: 23-01 31st Street, at the corner of 23rd Ave.
Hours of Operation: 7 days a week. Lunch, 12p.m.-4p.m.; Dinner, 5p.m.-12p.m.
Until we eat again,
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