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Excellent New Greek Restaurant In Westchester

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As many of you know, I have commented on various Greek restaurants in Westchester in the past. While my opinion on those hasn't changed, I want to alert you to a very good new one:

Santorini -- Sleepy Hollow, NY (175 Valley St.) 914-631-4300. Turn onto Beekman from Route 9, left at the first light, follow the road down into the "Valley" past the car wash.

The restaurant just opened, and I would rank it as one of the best in the area -- Greek or otherwise (better than, for example, Lefteris in Tarrytown -- which, BTW, isn't all that bad, as a matter of fact, it's quite good). The location leaves something to be desired (it's way off the beaten track and a bit hard to find), but the place is so good, it's worth the effort.

The decor is very nice, the hygiene exceptional, and the service friendly and accommodating. The chef(s) are actually Greek, as are most of the folks working there. Parking is on the street, immediately after the restaurant proper, which is on the right side of the one way street.

Pricing is, I think very, very reasonable, and seems a bit less than the other places. Certainly the portions are generous.

Some thoughts (all in comparison to the usually available fare):

1. Taramosalata: This was a hit! Most places these days serve a creamy style, with very little of what the dish is actually supposed to contain, fish eggs. They're not even shy about hiding where it comes from -- big plastic tubs clearly labeled "Taramosalata" from a factory in Astoria, Queens. Look up, the next time you're at Lefteris. ;)

However, the appetizer here is clearly homemade -- you can actually see (and taste) the caviar, and the minced onions mixed in aren't bad either (nor are they overwhelming). Much more flavorful than the more generic cream "dip" from the other place(s). Probably some of the best I've had.

2. Dolmadakia: Again, better than most. stuffed, crisp, with a filling that's not been overcooked. Clearly home made. If you like your rice al dente (as opposed to mush), you'll enjoy these.

3. Avgolemono: One of my favorites, and something that often resembles Campbell's Chicken with lemon added. This soup is different. Creamy. Lemony. Chunky. With a delicious addition of orzo to add body. Fabulous.

4. The "Zeus" combo appetizer: The traditional Greek staples of Moussaka, Pastisio, Spanakopita and a generous slicing of Gyro meat. With a side of pita. All absolutely delicious -- while listed as an appetizer, it's a meal in itself.

I'm usually not a fan of these Greek staples, but thought we'd try them as a measure of the place. For example, the pastisio isn't just your basic "macaroni and cheese" -- this one is nicely flavored, and the noodles (seem) to be home-made, and not out of a box. Give it a try.

5. Lamb Souvlaki Platter: Very tender lamb, nicely grilled, as good as it gets.

The desserts were also uniformly good, and complete the meal perfectly.

All in all, the food had a delicious and custom-made flavor to it (I don't want to say "home-made" because, besides being trite, it deserves better than that moniker).

Definitely worth a try, a bit off the beaten Route 9 path, but worth the drive. Make the effort to find it, you won't be disappointed.

Opa!

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  1. Thanks for the tips, EHS - can't wait to try it! :o)

    1. I agree with everything you said and more so. Just by reading the menu it made me hungry. So, it was a wonderful surprise to see that the food actually exceeded my expectations! The Spanakoita just melted in your mouth, made to perfection. I am not a hugh Greek food fan but was totally won over with several of the selections on the menu. I especially enjoyed the Keftedes,( a first for me) the meatballs had a delicate cruchy outside and very well seasoned on the inside and the tomato sauce was just right. The Falafel was also very, very good. We shared the Mousaka which again a first for me it, was devine! all the many flavors just blended so well and the cinnimon for me was surprising, it added a smooth smokey taste to the dish.
      Hats off to the Greek chefs!

      Finally a place that lives up to it's food and won't break the bank.

      I can see myself as a regular here.

      10 Replies
      1. re: roose66

        Good to hear that the falafel is good. I made the mistake of trying it at Lefteris II in Mt. Kisco when I ate there with a bunch of co-workers last year and it was awful. I was looking for somewhere to eat before the Lea Solonga concert in Tarrytown in November, I think we'll give this place a try.

        1. re: MisterBill2

          I might call to make a reservation if you are going before a concert, the Restaurant is tiny, with very few tables.

          1. re: chowdom

            Thanks for the suggestion. Do they actually take reservations?

            1. re: MisterBill2

              Yes, I have one for tonight! Also, to answer my own question, they do not as yet have a liquor license so for now it's BYO.

              1. re: Marge

                Called and made my reservation tonight for next week, just to be safe.

              2. re: MisterBill2

                Since the Sunday New York Times Westchester section gave it an "Excellent" rating in its review a couple of weeks ago:

                http://events.nytimes.com/2008/01/06/...

                ... reservations are absolutely required, two hours or more in advance.

                1. re: tbetz

                  The place is most likely the best Greek Restaurant in Westchester right now and I had a great meal there but they received a "Very Good" from the NY Times not an "Excellent" like you posted. It's nice to hear that they have long waits, they deserve it.

                  1. re: tbetz

                    Take out is the way to go until things die down! :-)

                    1. re: i_eat_a_lot_of_ice_cream

                      Hopefully things won't "die down" and as long as they keep up the quality I will keep going back. By the way thanks I.E.A.L.O.I i am ordering take-out from them tonight, on your mention!

                      1. re: sausagekingofny

                        Very true, they deserve all the business! I got take out the other night and just finished off the hummus..... yum!!!

          2. Thanks for the review, looking forward to trying it. Do they serve wine?

            1. Have to agree with EHS and roose66, the food was great, the owners and staff charming. They are proudly displaying the above original chowhound post in the front window. Valet parking will be available in the near future. We were served complimentary hummus with warm pita and a very good Greek sausage. We ordered the grilled octopus, Greek salad, gyro, sea bass, and shish kabob. One can't compare this food to the food at Lefteris, it is in a different class. This is very affordable and great Greek food we will be returning.

                1. re: i_eat_a_lot_of_ice_cream

                  Thanks for the thorough report. It's so nice to hear about good greek food.