We've been to half a dozen Michelin starred restaurants but this one has to be one of the best if not the best we've visited.
We went for the tasting menu which effectively amounted to 10 courses (including various amuse bouche) costing €140 in total including two glasses of wine each.
Service was very friendly and very relaxed.
The chef Nikos Karathanos won the Michelin star for the restaurant in 2009 and it from our experience will hold it for many years to come!
Small jewellery store in Plaka area. All items are hand made, made from semi precious stones, coral or silver to name but a few materials.
The prices are extremely reasonable with turquoise or coral bracelets retailing from €7 upwards.
Very friendly service with no hard sell.
Adrianou Str 136, Plaka
+30 210 27 75 005
Interesting bar/cafe in the bohemian Exarchia area of Athens.
The Exarchia area has drawn intellectuals and students into it from the 19th century onwards and the area was headquarters of many left wing organisations.
This establishment on the square looks straight out of 1960s eastern Europe with every piece of furniture actually from the 1960s itself. Relaxed easy going crowd pitch up here.
A cafe for the 'elite' of Athens, it is worth a visit to see that the economic downturn has not affected everyone equally. Quite exclusive shops ring the square.
Τσακάλωφ 1, Athens 10673 Greece
+30 210 3602497
Google map: bit.ly/HDb6Br
This was a real find just around the corner from the James Joyce pub. The small entrance on Agiou Filippou Street leads onto a rooftop terrace with a great view of the Acropolis, the Ancient Agora and the Temple of Hephestus.
Beers available from €2 and also serves food.
We were making our way to the Parthenon and it was quite a surprise to come across this village at the foot of the Acropolis.
This white washed village which was carved out of the rocks is reminiscent of a village in Santorini. It was dug out of the rocks by stonemasons from the island of Anafi (near Santorini) who were working on King Otto's Athens palace in the early 19th century. To remind them of home, they tried to recreate their homes of the islands. Anafiotika unsurprisingly means 'Anafi style'.
Just be aware that these are people's homes though the inhabitants (many descendants of the original stone masons) are used to tourists now.
As a matter of interest, there is a plaque dedicated to Konstantinos Koukidis who fell from the Acropolis wrapped in the Greek flag during the German occupation of Greece. The plaque is by the church of St George of the rock.
North east slope of Acropolis
Easiest way to get to the village is to go up Thespidos from Adrianou, and then turn right onto Stratonos. At the end of that street you will come to the whitewashed church of St George of the rock. This is the base of the village and you can then ascend via the winding paths into the village itself.
Google map: bit.ly/IadzQQ
Decent Irish pub in central Athens. As you'd expect it was not particularly cheap but shows all the UK sporting events and has live music as well.
The other three Irish pubs are all located a wee bit out from the centre.
A very popular fish restaurant on the shore that people keep coming back to. Always a good mix of locals and tourists. There is a bar area where locals come in for a pint or even a glass of champagne.
Had the fish platters and they did not disappoint!
Great quality fish as you come to expect. For two platters, bottle of house white, chips and glasses of port it set us back only £83.
In recent years while we were there we have seen the actor Stellan Skarsgard, cabinet minister Ben Bradshaw, Tom Kitchin (Michelin starred chef) and Celebrity Masterchef winner Nadia Sawalha to name but a few.
Decent food quickly at very reasonable prices.
We had two mains, one Coke, two bottles of beer for £12.80. It should have cost £15 or so but there was an automatic 20% discount (which seems to occur frequently).
This place serves decent Asian food and not surprisingly given the student population in the area is always busy.
It is quick and cheap and while it will not be garnering any Michelin stars it is somewhere we often go back to when in the area.
Don't believe they do reservations and you can always get a table though you might have to wait a few minutes.
45 South Bridge, Edinburgh , EH1 1LL
Google map: bit.ly/IL8nH4
As the name suggests, the only food sold here is pork. In the window is a whole hog from which the staff take shredded pork.
The pork is served on rolls (three different sizes) with the choice of stuffing and apple or chilli sauce for extra flavour. That is in essence the menu!
The pork is absolutely amazing!
Some seats on the premises though a lot of people just take away.
Charlie's Bar is a great bar, full of character. In the winter it has an open coal fire which added to the darkness and really makes for a great atmosphere. Just by the City Hall on the riverside so you can't miss it.
It hosts live music most evenings from rock 'n' roll to blues.
You will find the gigs list on the website.
Great bar on the Shore area of Leith in Edinburgh.
Extremely friendly and efficient staff. Feels like a French bar with dark wood and a fire in the corner.
This bar also has a separate eating area though you can eat in bar as well. We had a great fish pie (£8.50) and a steak and kidney pie (£9.50).
The bar, unlike some on the Shore area, is kids friendly.
3-4 The Shore, Leith, Edinburgh, EH6 6QW
+44(0)131 554 5666
Google map: bit.ly/HEVn49
A really decent pub.
This is part of the Belhaven chain and has a very good value drinks menu. Additionally the food menu is very reasonably priced and very tasty - a step above a lot of pubs.
In the less busy times of the week, there are great deals to be had on food and drink.
They even have a 'Man V Food' challenge on Tuesdays!
The pub is situated on the popular Shore area of Edinburgh (Leith) and feels like a pub that should be in a port with all the nautical memorabilia on the walls.
This area looks like any inner city area now, with rows of terraced houses. However there is an interesting history behind the bricks and mortar.
The Albert Road area around the docks in Cork became a Jewish quarter from the end of the 19th Century.
While there were some Jews in Cork from the mid 18th Century, a big influx of Jews from the Vilna and Kovno areas of Lithuania arrived from the 1880s onwards. These folk were fleeing Russian pogroms and settled in the Albert Road area.
People always wondered why Jews settled in Cork, a city in what was then a very Catholic country. Allegedly the immigrants with no English may have thought the port of Cork was in fact ‘New York’.
Whatever the reason for their arrival, the area became locally known as "Jewtown" though not in a pejorative way. While poor it was more a Jewish quarter rather than a Jewish ghetto.
At its peak the Jewish population of Cork in the early part of the 20th Century was about 500 with the bulk living in Jewtown. Now the Jewish population is estimated somewhere between 20 to 30 in a city of almost 200,000.
The most famous Jewish native of Jewtown was Gerald Goldberg (several times Lord Mayor of Cork). While not Jewish, James Joyce's father, John Stanislaus Joyce, lived near the Goldberg family home in Jewtown.
Today, the streetscape is more or less as it was more than a century ago but alas there is very little trace of the Jewish community today. The Jewish meeting house at the corner of Electric Terrace is now a residential property. The nearby synagogue (technically Orthodox) on 10 South Terrace which is well over 100 years old is still in use. There are sadly only a handful of Jews in the congregation though it is occasionally inflated by visitors.
Additionally there is a green area called, Shalom Park opened in 1989, in the heart of Jewtown. In Dec 2011 an art installation marked the Jewish Hanukkah festival and a similar lighting show is planned for the next 50 years!
There are a few decent bars in the area (on Albert Quay) such as the ‘Idle Hour’ and ‘The Sextant’ which serves food.
Hibernian Buildings, Albert Road, Monrea Terrace and Eastville streets in Cork.
Google map: bit.ly/HNIPca
Very popular pub in the centre of Galway on the east side of Eyre Square. All the features of the old bar are retained and walking through the door, you might as well be walking into an Ireland of the 1950s. The pub is subject to a preservation order so there is no danger of anything being changed in the immediate future.
At the back of the pub is a large outdoor beer garden with seating which is ideal for smokers as well as those who like their drink outside. Areas of the beer garden are under cover and are heated so ideal for the winter months.
From media reports it was sold for over €14m in the property bubble of the mid 2000s! Great pub as it is, when you see the bar you will wonder how anyone could spend so much on it!
8 Eyre Square, Galway, Ireland
Google map: bit.ly/Hut601
Great food market located in the centre of Cork city. Open as a market from 1788 and still thriving. When the British Queen visited Ireland in 2011, the English market was one of the places on her itinerary.
Quite a range here from exotic fruits, vegetables, artisan breads, handmade chocolates, fish and meat. Additionally there are numerous cafes in which you can take a pit stop.
The word 'gastropub' is so overused these days but this establishment certainly deserves that tag.
Have been here many times before and as usual it did not disappoint. Good food, friendly service and great value. There is a wide choice on the menu (and on specials board).
My wife had lentil soup as well as mackerel pate with oatcakes while I had the homemade burger. Portion sizes were big and together with two drinks only set us back £22.
This place never seems to be in various restaurant listing publications but it is well known to people from the Leith area as a place to be treasured.
Kitchen open 10 am - 10pm.
Good location for food and drink. The menu while on the face of it looks like a typical bar menu is inventive. You'll find things like rabbit burgers and pheasant on the menu that you wouldn't normally find in a bar. The food is very much moving towards 'gastropub' territory.
On Saturday nights the bar is packed as they have live music. Even when it is quieter it is nice to sit down with a nice pint.
As well as the central Rue de la Republique, La Part Dieu shopping centre has everything and every shop you are looking for.
Seemingly one of the largest malls in Europe and having been there I can believe that claim!
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