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Greek food in Northern Virginia

my roommate inquired about whether there are any good Greek restaurants in the area, and I couldn't answer his question. We live in Falls Church near Route 50/Lee Highway and the Beltway. I think he is looking primarily for a neighborhood/carryout type of place, rather than sit-down nicer place, but I'll take any suggestions that we can form our own impressions on...

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  1. Wow. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of ma and pa Greek eateries all over the Virginia suburbs. I'm willing to bet that about every other strip mall has a "pizzeria" run by Greeks. I live in Springfield, and within a few miles in any direction is Delia's, Saratoga Pizzeria, Malek's and others.

    Recommend contacting the closest Greek Orthodox Church and taking a look at the weekly bulletin. It could be on the Web. Usually the back page is covered with ads.

    1. Anthony's in Falls Church is right down the street. Obscene portions. Pan Am Family Restaurant in Fairfax is another big greek joint.

      I have to agree that it seems like every other pizzeria and Italian place is run by Greeks.

      2 Replies
      1. re: monkeyrotica

        I second Pan Am. I really like the sauce on their pies. I also like their breakfasts - nothing special, but hits a solid mark.

        1. re: Dennis S

          Atlantis near King and Braddock is in a similar vein to Pan Am: big solid portions, very diner-esque in the menu department, good Greek standards. Kinda reminds me of a roomier version of the old Vesuvios on Dupont Circle, minus the drunks.

      2. Sounds to me like Anthony's would be a good place to start. They have the usual suspects: souvlaki, moussaka, spinach pie, etc. Plus subs and greek pizza (pretty close to what New Englanders call "House of Pizza" pizza).

        1. I don't know if you're settled on Greek specifically, or if you're looking for some Mediterranean food. There's an amazing Turkish restaurant right off of Columbia Pike in Arlington. They have two store fronts - one is sit down and one is take out.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Spinning Ninny

            I don't know about the sit-down restaurant but I wouldn't describe Attila's carryout as "amazing"; the food is ok but the only noteworthy chowish item I've had there is their hummus

            1. re: Jamie D

              I second that hummus recommendation. :) I love Attila's hummus, and their homemade pita is definitely worth it.

            2. re: Spinning Ninny

              Again, to follow up with a link on Chowhound:

              Atilla's Turkish Restaurant
              2705 Columbia Pike, Arlington, VA 22204

            3. Just off the parkway in Alexandria is Vaso's. Look for a giant pig a-la Southern BBQ joint style on the roof which, coincidentally, has nothing to do with the Greek fare on the menu. Great mousaka, a decent veal chop, good appetizers. Better outdoor seating area than you can find otherwise in Old Town Alexandria.

              1 Reply
              1. re: dzustin

                And in Old Town, speaking of it, is Taverna Cretekou on King St which has a pleasant courtyard outside seating area (haven't been to Vaso's to compare the two). The staff can be festive at times, which is nice, and the food's also nice (not outstanding, but better than many, I'd say). Their mezzethakia is great (ouzeri mezedes) for nibbles. http://www.tavernacretekou.com/

                Crystal City has the Athena Pallas Restaurant on 22nd St, just behind the 23rd St Restaurant Row area. It's been "acclaimed," but when we went in July, we found the atmosphere very 1970s-American-Basement and the food was only just okay. http://www.athenapallasrestaurant.com/

              2. Just to cover bases for future folks searching this thread, there's also Mykonos in Reston. Linking is broken right now, only giving back the last in the recordset of a search list - but the address is 1810 Michael Faraday Dr, Reston, VA 20190. I went soon after it opened and it seemed like it had strong promise.

                6 Replies
                1. re: Dennis S

                  Also the Greek restaurant, which name escapes me, in McLean. In a small office bldg a block off Old Dominion Drive between Chain Bridge Rd and 123.

                  1. re: bacchante

                    Thank goodness you're not referring to the McLean Family Restaurant on Chain Bridge Road in McLean. I've never understood the popularity of that place beyond the fact that it is an important fixture in the social life of the community. The number of soccer teams that fill the place after Saturday games is impressive. The appeal of the food has eluded me.

                    FWIW, the photograph of Pete Sampras is on display because the owner is a relative. .

                    1. re: Indy 67

                      No, that's definitely not it. Thanks for the warning, though.

                    2. re: bacchante


                      Greek Taverna is the McLean restaurant. My Greek friends in Great Falls go there when dining out.

                      1. re: alkapal

                        Greek Taverna is an excellent Greek restaurant, but it is definitely more upscale than my interpretation of the OP's original request for a "carryout type of place, rather than sit-down nicer place."

                        We've been eating at this restaurant since it opened perhaps a decade ago and I've never once seen anyone pick up a take-out order.

                  2. another solid choice in the Anthony's / Atlantis vein is Mom's Pizza at Glebe Rd and Columbia Pike, Arlington. big juicy gyros (tho standard pressed gyro meat)

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Jamie D

                      mom's: maybe not pre-formed, but they reheat on grill for gyros.....aaaarrrrgggghhhh! don't seem to do so for their hummos with gyro meat on top. pretty good, but SALTY meat!

                    2. Primo's in Alexandria. It's pretty good, though I tend to get either teh gyro platter for takeout or the pizza. It's a true neighborhood joint.