Meanwhile, back in Chicago…Day #1

I went back to my Sweet Home Chicago (Go Cubs!) for the holidays and we spent the bulk of our time eating, eating, eating!!! So, I thought I’d share some of the great spots we went for a meal in case you find yourself hungry in the western suburbs of Lombard or Glen Ellyn any time soon.

Day #1: Just got off my flight from Texas and need some comfort food to help me normalize after all that Dramamine and Xanax! Luckily, my hotel is right next door to Greek Islands restaurant-Yay! I always feel like family when I walk into a Greek restaurant and Greek Islands is no exception. The vibe is warm, friendly, and relaxed. You can hear lively Greek guitar music playing behind the hum of the happy diners. I love when they play ‘Zorba the Greek’…and they always do! The first thing you see when you walk in the door is the roaring fireplace off to the right. That is so inviting when the temps outside are in the 30’s!

These folks import their own olive oil, wines, cheeses, herbs, spices, and seafood directly from Greece. I adore Greek food and so I like to try lots of different things off the menu. But, whether you are new to Greek food or a veteran like me, you have to start off with some Saganaki-the flaming cheese that sets off chants of ‘Oopah’ all over the room!

Some of my other favorites are the Taramosalata (considered Greek caviar-great starter if you like ‘salty’ foods) and Tzatziki (yoghurt-cucumber-garlic spread with lemon and pepper). For an entree, I almost always end up with the Combination Plate because I love to sample a little bit of everything…lamb, Pastichio (baked pasta casserole), Dolmades (grape leaves stuffed with meat and rice-my personal fave!), Moussaka (baked eggplant and ground beef casserole)! What can I say-I’m a girl who likes casseroles!

gus-at-greek-islandsYour Greek meal is not complete without a glass of Roditis, the traditional Greek table wine. It’s a fairly light red that goes down easy with all that heavy food. Or, maybe try a Greek beer! My dinner date liked the Hillas, which is a Euro Pale Lager style beer brewed by Macedonian Thrace Brewery in Komotini, Greece.

Needless to say, after all that Greek comfort food, I rarely make it to dessert because I am stuffed beyond belief! But Greek Islands serves all the traditional layered pastry favorites like Baklava, Loukoumades, and Galaktoboureko. If you can find room in your tummy for these after your dinner, I salute you! My Greek friends can cook and you will never leave this restaurant hungry!

Prices are reasonable and the venue is family-friendly. The venue is spacious enough for parties, too!


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