RESTAURANTS

We offer you an overview of the restaurants and sweet shops that we think are worth considering. There are many more we have visited and were not satisfied or have not visited at all. Our rating is subjective, considering menu choices, originality, freshness, service, price.

Word of Advice on Ordering Fish: When you go buy fish at any Greek restaurant, you should go to the kitchen, -they will lead you to the fridge- to choose your fish. Have your fish weighed then and there and agree their weight (=price) with the restaurateur, write down on your order the weight (in grams) & NUMBER of fish. Haggle the rounding up with the manager (eg if it is 630, write 600). An old trick is snap the tails off the fish BEFORE they cooked so you now they are «yours» and were not switched during cooking. Make sure you get the right number of fish when they arrive at your table.

PEESES

EXOHIKO MARGARITA’S

On the main road, leave the house, going left, after Peesses beach, in middle of valley. Margarita defines good Greek home-cooking: decently priced Greek cuisine, some from the pot, some from the oven and grilled local meats or souvlaki. Margarita herself stands out as a personality but also for the good basic Greek food with Kean fresh bio products and vegetarian dishes, one of the few truly value-for-money Kean restaurants. Service can be very slow if busy, that is why it missed the 5/5 mark.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: **

PEESES BEACH

CHRISTOFOROS

(green restaurant on far right on the beach)

It's prime location may attract you but overall food quality is mediocre and expensive, not always the freshest. For a light nibble or salad may be a viable choice if you are on the beach already but go to Margarita if not too lazy.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: ***

KOUNDOUROS

PORTO KOUNDOUROS RESTAURANT

Up-scale taverna in the beach bar complex offering a selection of various salads, fish, and tavern items. If you are on the beach chairs you can also order sandwiches and light lunch items. Is overall pricey, among some on the grill, a lot of fried food and pre-frozen items. Convenient but far from quality or value-for-money. Good for a drink at all hours!

Our rating: 2/5
Price: ***

KOUNDOURAKI ROCK

The beach bar on Koundouraki beach offers some very decent fair. Huge burgers from local meat, fresh salads from organic products and apart from all kind soft drinks, beer, soda, some very interesting cold mint teas! On the pricey side overall but you are on the beach!

Our rating: 3/5
Price: ***

ZERAT RESTAURANT

Newcomer (2018) fine dining restaurant in the new ANAMAR boutique hotel. Expensive and not worth it by popular opinion. Tries to serve Greek nouvelle cuisine but somewhere fails in the greater picture. Ambiance and view are nice but does not justify the 3-digit bill at the end. See Porto Kea Restaurant instead for fine dining.

Our rating: 1/5
Price: *****

KAMBI Tavern

Basic fare at decent prices. Good for a light lunch if in the area, close to many nice beaches. Its tour-de-force are home-made pies (mushroom, vegetable, meat) and lately lamb-on-the-spit, a Greek tradition! Service is a bit slow and marginally un-professional.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: **

THE MAIN TOWN, HORA

PIATSA

as you enter the town of Ioulis (Chora) through the arch, on your immediate left you will see the Piatsa . Owned by Yannis and Evangelia, it serves a great assortment of carefully prepared Greek cuisine dishes at very decent prices, making a favourite among the locals. Does not take reservations so arrive early on weekends or…wait for one of the few tables outside. Definitely value-for-money with lots of local ambiance and good home cooking.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: **

TO STEKI

It is Kea’s less-known gem. It is a family-run restaurant in the middle of the beautiful Ioulis, next to the St Dimitri church. Mom Ritsa cooks, Dad & Son serve, cannot get more…homey. Great, real, HOME-MADE cuisine with a very tasty, originally Greek menu, good local fresh materials. My favourites are the aubergine wraps with minced meat and the rabbit in beer sauce. Some times slow service when busy but the very polite Yiannis the owner, a joy. Due to popularity, portions have grown lately smaller and more expensive so it misses the 5/5 mark by a sliver but that is no reason not to go. If the walk up (down is easy) does not deter you, recommended whole-heartedly. You may have to wait a bit for a table on busy weekends.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: ***

KYLIX

In the Chora, to your left on the way up, nearly across from Museum. More of a wine bar than restaurant , offering a variety of small and larger dishes. Overall expensive though the food is nice. Terrace has nice view.

Our rating: 3/5
Price: ****

Taverna tou Gianni

The big tavern on the main square, across from the impressive neoclassical town hall. Typical Greek tavern offering some pot dishes, a lot of grilled meat, gets crowded in the summer. Decent food but not exceptional, some dishes stand out more than others. Service can be very slow when busy.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: ***

Paparounas

Main square to the right from Town Hall. A newcomer offering nice Greek cuisine, some dishes exceptional. Worth trying. Finding seating may be challenging on busy days.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: ***

The Panorama Sweet Shop

(past the main town hall square 80m)

You have a sweet tooth? You want to have a relaxing cup of Greek coffee with some nice oriental delights? Panorama is THE place. They make their own oriental sweets (baklava, kataifi, ravani, ekmek, etc) and many more. Their terrace offers sweeping Aegean and sunset views so get there early before sunset to get a seat. Music can be a bit loud and annoying at times.

Our rating: 3/5
Price: **

UPPER HORA

To Spiti sti Hora

Much advertised, supposedly gourmet “nouvelle Greek cuisine’ bespoke restaurant and bar, offering an impressive view of Hora and the Aegean. However, overall severely over-priced, portions are tiny, at prices like those of a 1-2 star Michelin restaurant, less the taste and quality. Service is from slow to erratic for the genre. Worth to go for a drink during sunset and no more. Trek to Steki from there and skip dinner there: too much hype, too little substance.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: *****

KORISSIA-THE PORT AREA

Rolando's Restaurant

The larger than life Rolando and his wife Chryssa serve specialties from the island and from the island of Corfu where he comes from. Fish, Meats, Specialties or simply nicely grilled fair: fantastic food, real Greek hospitality! Whole-heartedly recommended, one of the best on the island.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: ***

Lagoudera

It is located across from where the ferries stop, in a you-cannot-miss neoclassical yellow building. Lagoudera features and array of Greek mostly local dishes. Do not miss the eggplant in red sauce with local cheese!

Our rating: 3/5
Price: ***


Magazes

Very popular restaurant with tourists due to its location smack in the middle of the port and in front of the marina. Food is mediocre, nothing to write home about at times stodgy and inedible. I would avoid.

Our rating: 1/5
Price: ***

To Steki tou Stroggyli

Small tavern up in the port, you have to really look for the sign to take you up the small cobblestone back street to find it. Not much of a variety or the food is exceptional. Nice for the view. Better choices in the port.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: **

Pizzeria in the port

They say that Greek pizza is the best! This little family run joint verifies the adage. The only issue is that it is quite…pricey for pizza and what it overall offers. If you have had it with Greek cooking, try it. Pizzas are very tasty and at decent size.

Our rating: 3/5
Price: ****

Gyrismata

Hey!, every Greek town has to have a souvlaki/gyro joint and this is the best one in Kea. If you yearn for the “Greek hamburger’, the little shop next to the green supermarket is nice, clean, offers fast service, all at a decent price. The beach seating is an experience in itslef, child friendly, let the kids, loose! Owners are wonderful, young and sweet. Value-for-money Greek “street food”.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: **

Jimmy’s Korissos

I do not know about you, but I have a sweet tooth! Jimmy’s is part of the islands’ history as the first and still one of the best coffee and sweet shops (and people watching corners). Though it makes excellent waffles, ice cream, profiterol, etc, my favorite are its traditional stronghold: the oriental baklava, kadaifi, ravani or galaktopoureko. Let the syrup ooze!

Our rating: 4/5
Price: **

Porto Kea Suites

The little restaurant by the pool at the Porto Kea Suites Hotels has been recently upgraded and under the auspices of the venerable Michelin Awarded Chef Lefteris Lazarou (Varoulko, Varoulko By the Sea in Pireus) and his apprentice Lefteris Soultatos, it now one of the most bespoke on the island, serving fine Greek Modern Cuisine. Maybe the only place that well justifies the elevated price tag, scoring value-for-money on all 3 axes; ambiance, taste, presentation and service. Great for that special birthday or anniversary. Book, dress up and go!

Our rating: 5/5
Price: *****

FOTIMARI

Philippos Grill & Tavern

With new building and extended menu. Offers great view of the port area plus many Greek delicacies on the grill or spit, the succulent piglet being what they are famous for but also many other grilled local meats.

Our rating: 3/5
Price: ***

VOURKARI

Aristos

Among the numerous restaurants Vourkari offer, Aristos may be the most famous not in Vourkari, on the whole island. The small fish tavern where VIPs from the Mediterranean stopped with their yachts to dine in the 80s and 90s rose to fame much outside Kea. However, the original owner Aristos got fed up with it and sold it many years ago and the new owners though they like the reputation, do not have the same business attitude. Among some fresh fish, they also serve dubiously conspicuous “fresh” (frozen) fish or shell fish, charged for a fortune. Avoid the in-fashion supposedly “Kean” (frozen) lobster-spaghetti for 2 at EUR 125 a pop. Unless you are sold on spending 200-300 EUR on a meal just to see and be seen, you have better choices.

Our rating: 3/5
Price: *****

SERIOS

Seirios is another fish tavern in Vourkari. We have not tried yet

Our rating: n/a
Price: n/a

Vourkarion

Vourkarion from a fancy souvlaki joint has joined its Vourkari sibblings as a fancy fish tavern. Dien with caution, we have not tried it yet

Our rating: n/a
Price: n/a

JUST PAST VOURKARI

Ennea Kores Reataurant

Leave the yacht marina behind you and head towards Otzias, when you reach the Otzias junction, instead of a right, continue straight towards the little Agia Irene church, as opposed to taking the right to Otzias – SECOND restaurant to your right. Elegant atmosphere, on the water, wide choice of food, specializing in fish and shell fish, clams & oysters. On expensive side but the only one that serves guaranteed really fresh sea food including –when in season- oysters, shrimp and lobsters. Service let’s a bit to be desired some times. Good bottled fine wine list.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: ****

H STROFH TOU MIMH or H KALLI

Once upon-a-time the blue white little restaurant was one of the best fish eating taverns on the island, when Mimis would catch or buy the fresh fish off the boats of Vourkari. Now it has definitely taken the wrong turn towards more expensive tablecloths, crystal glassware or candles and less investment in quality of food and service, frozen fish served as fresh, scams in fish weighing, etc, abound. Now it is catering more to the nouveau riches or stuck-nowhere-else-to eat yacht folk that read the “excellent” reviews in print or social media. Though the location on the beach with the candles may tempt you, heed the Sirens and pass and go 30 m down the street to 9 KORES, see above, a much better value-for-money.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: ****

OTZIAS

Anna’s Tavern

(on the way up to Kastriani)

Definitely stands out as on of the top 3 value-for-money, blue-chip eating places in Kea. Open year-round, it serves delicious meat and fish dishes and vegetables too. Excellent Greek cuisine that includes rarities like saligaria (escargots/snails in red sauce). Fish are decently priced and always fresh. A MUST during your visit.

Our rating: 5/5
Price: *** (**** for fish meals)

Otzias tavern on the beach

Very nice restaurant with quiet a few choices, on the more gourmet side. Good choice due to its proximity to the beach, order also fresh fish in advance, they will custom make them very nicely.

Our rating: 3/5
Price: ***

SPATHI

KAIKAS

Tavern on the Beach Great Day Trip.

Organized beach and tavern with all the basic fare, you will find something to feed the kids (souvlakia & fries!) and to quench your thirst (cold beer on tab).

Our rating: 2/5
Price: ***

GYRISTH

To Perasma tou Gyristh

I cannot rave enough about this little inconspicuous roadside restaurant with the simple décor! In fact, it may be in my opinion after 25 years of presence on Kea, the BEST, most value-for-money on the island! Despite the humble surroundings and/or offer of any amazing sea view, dishes are prepared to perfection with local products and served in a Michelin star restaurant fashion and the one dish is better than the other! A family run restaurant the children serving, service lets a bit to be desired –some dishes took a while to get to our table- but they are worth the wait! The most important surprise the tab: defines the word VALUE-FOR-MONEY (misses the 5/5 for service alone). Do not leave Kea if you do not try it! Worth the drive.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: **

ELLINIKA

KARTHEA

(Simon’s old Tavern)

Since Nektarions, Antoni’s brother from ANNA’s Vourkari took it over from Simon, the tavern has seen an amazing transformation in quality of food served. The spacious tavern (that can also host weddings and events) with the large terrace offers an array of local dishes and typical Greek cuisine foods, all well prepared and nicely served. One of the best eating-out choices if you are in the south of the island. Nice and cool on hot summer days up in Ellinika. Beware of the Greek live music on certain summer weekends, if not to your taste.

Our rating: 4/5
Price: ***

POULARAKIA

The cute little restaurant next to the mini market on the main square, if you want to hang out with the locals, this is the place. Cute small coffee shop/tavern in the evening serving limited meze and some dishes for...unlimited drinking.

Our rating: 2/5
Price: **

Kastellakia Bay Villas © 2019 All rights reserved  |  All Photography copyright © Michael Kiakidis 2019 All Rights Reserved

dual.design