Limanaki Tavern, Neos Pyrgos, Evia, Greece

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For those who want to capture the flavours of the Aegean, as fresh as you can get them, the “Limanaki” Tavern in Neos Pyrgos on the northern tip of Evia is the place to go.

The tavern is literally on the small harbour of fishing boats that venture out in the Aegean every day for a catch. The village of Neos Pyrgos is small and its big neighbour, Orei, has all the big fishing boats. Neos Pyrgos has the small ones, and this is why you can eat fish that has been literally hooked, and not caught in the nets.

Limanaki is the favourite place of the fishermen when they return in the morning. You can see them having “tsipouro” (the local grappa, or eau de vie) eight o’clock in the morning, while Nikos, the Limanaki proprietor prepares a nice meze for them.

Enough of all that, lets now get to the food.

In the summer, it is essential to start with ultra tender green beans, called “ambelofassoula”.

 

 Ambelofassoula
Ambelofassoula
Nikos will serve you the freshest squid grilled on charcoal. I cannot begin to describe the flavours.
 
 Squid grilled on charcoal
Squid grilled on charcoal

After that you can have prawns grilled to perfection, that I suggest you eat without taking the head off. Its full of flavours and deliciously crunchy.

   

  

 Prawns grilled on charcoal
Prawns grilled on charcoal

 What comes naturally next is whole fried little fish, called “atherina”.

 

 Atherina
Atherina

The grilled cod that comes to conclude the set has been caught on hook. The fish is sweet, the flesh is firm and has nothing on it but coarse salt. Just add a little olive oil and lemon and you have it.

 

 Grilled Cod
Grilled Cod