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Need Tarpon Springs Rec's

Greetings Hounds -- Going to Tarpon Springs in a couple weeks for a day trip and would love to lunch at the local's favorite for authentic Greek beyond the tried and true moussaka, pastichio, etc. Thanks!

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  1. My favorite is Costa's and their grilled octopus. They are a touch off the main drag.

    1 Reply
    1. Yep, Costa's is my spot too...
      I get the seafood combination with the calamari 'grilled' rather than breaded and fried...
      It's tender, juicy, and amazingly flavorful that way...
      The smelts in the combo are fried, and that's enough...
      No fear--- they're delicious, not fishy...

      Whatever you do, make sure you get the flaming crusty cheese appetizer called Saganaki...
      Their Spanokopita (spinach, feta, phyllo, pie) is wonderful too...

      'Opa' to you! ----- and to rhnault, whose path it seems I've no doubt crossed in my Chowwy wanderings...

      1. I agree for authentic Greek go to Costa's they're address is: 521 Athens St Tarpon Springs, FL 34689. They have great octopus, their fried eggplant is the best around, I've been eating there for years and have never had a bad dish. Just up the street is National Bakery it's not touristy at all and they make great traditional deserts you can buy to send back home if you'd like (I don't think they ship, but there is always a UPS Store somewhere). Also across the street is Halki Market if you're in the need for any Greek groceries.

        1 Reply
        1. re: robiyaki

          Thanks much Mild Bill and robiyaki; Costa's sounds like its just what I'm looking for -- and I'll check out that bakery for some take-home goodies...Barb

        2. I gotta cast my vote for Mykonos. They also have an awesome chargrilled octopus, and also have a great combo plate of moussaka, pastichio, and dolmades, in addition to many other great dishes. When I gotta get my Greek fix, that's where I go.

          3 Replies
          1. re: laurie

            Mykonos is my second favorite place in the docks, they have really good food but the atmosphere leaves a little to be desired. But overall they have good and authentic Greek food and the service is usually pretty good too.

            1. re: robiyaki

              I don't recommend Mykonos after seeing abc action news dirty dining report at http://www.abcactionnews.com/content/...

              They had 50 critical food violations (along with Mama Greek's and Hellas). Hellas is not mentioned in the report, but if you click on the map, it shows 87 critical food violations. Mykonos has 56 food violations with 31 critical ones. Which is too bad, because their food is decent.

              1. re: sstinso01

                Yup!
                That explains the slimy tentacles! :-)

                Scary but fun reading that site... Whoa!
                Thanks for posting that...
                I recently looked for the Dirty Dining site but never saw that main page...

          2. I might go there tomorrow for lunch---- Mykonos...

            I do lunch in Tarpon the second Thursday of every month cause my biz puts me there...

            Some of you guys mention Mykonos as being real good so I think I'll try it...

            3 Replies
            1. re: Mild Bill

              Hey Bill -- let me know what you think of Costa's vs. Mykonos since I'm on my way there next week -- thanks!

              1. re: bcodom

                I did go today...
                Parking in the unfamiliar lot I felt like I was cheating on my wife...

                The place is smaller than I imagined, and a little too cluttered with tables...
                The guy 18” away at the table next to me felt compelled to make conversation--- asking me directions and 1000 questions with his mouth full of food...
                It was unbelievable...
                But that doesn't have to do with anything...

                In order to compare I tried to order what I get at Costa's--- a grilled seafood combo--- and the waitress pointed it out to me on the menu...
                It was in the appetizer section--- and consisted of Shrimp, Calamari, and Octopus. with no sides for $16.95...

                That was fine I thought, because I'm doing 'lo carb' and I wasn't starving...

                At Costa's it's a 'meal' with salad and a side for $16.95--- and consists of fried smelts, squid, and octopus...
                It's a giant plate of food that I usually have a hard time finishing, even with my big appetite...

                I thought it might be fun with the shrimp instead...

                It came and it was NOT a big plate of food, but looked delicious...
                It looked like a big appetizer, with tomato & cucumber slices bordering the plate and the good stuff kind-of in the middle...
                I looked and poked for 4 seconds and thought there was a mistake because I couldn't find shrimp, but soon I did...

                There were 5 or 6 and they were sweet and delicious...

                Unbelievably good actually...
                If I ever go back I'm getting a plate of just grilled shrimp, some other stuff, and a salad...

                At Costa's they give you a nice pile of 'very young' squid that are super tender and juicy, with 3 or 4 large but tender octopus legs...
                Here they were large curly slices of larger squid, with large tentacle clusters... Those leggy pieces were good!
                Good, but nowhere near 'as' good...

                The greek oil, lemon, oregano, and garlic drizzle dressing was perfect!

                The octopus looked grilled just like Costa's but with thinner pieces than I'm used to...
                At Costa's the grilled Octopus is steak-like and tender---- and is consistently so...
                This was weirdly wet and squishy inside and a little off-putting...

                The suction cup area was slimy, and when I scraped that off with a knife it got better...
                But at Costa's those cuppys are always crispy!
                ???

                When I left, I seriously thought of what else I could have for lunch, but didn't follow thru...
                I spend too much and my van gets 10.65 MPG...

                But I was still hungry--- and when I leave Costa's I'm usually uncomfortably guilty and full...

                I only tried this one thing this one time, but based on that, and the cold clustered atmosphere----
                Mykonos can't touch Costa's...

                Actually I'm just gonna try Costa's grilled shrimp before I go back for seconds at Mykonos...

                I just see no reason...

                1. re: Mild Bill

                  You've convinced me -- it's Costa's for me next week! That mixed grill sounds perfect...thanks so much for the detailed review. Only a truly dedicated foodie would describe the differences in octopus' suction cups... ; ))

                  Barbara