Taste of Greece

Last week I heard on the radio that Greektown was hosting Taste of Greece 2010 this past Saturday. As soon as I heard that, I began craving spinikopita. Bad. When Saturday approached, I made plans to turn my cravings into a reality.

Carly and I headed to Greektown, which I’d never been before, to experience the festival. When we got off the El we already could hear the music. As we got closer we saw some dancers with some funny looking shoes!

We strolled down the block just to scope it all out. For a second I really felt like I was back in Greece (I was there a bit over a year ago).  Between the smells of incense, the little tents selling dinky toys and knock off perfumes, and the sights of authentic Greek cuisine, I didn’t feel like I was in Chicago at all! It was kinda nice.

In Greektown, even the Walgreens had writing in Greek! (“Open” was written in Greek letters!) 

It’s cool how Chicago has so many ethnic neighborhoods, all of which are inhabited mostly by people of those ethnic groups. We saw tons of Greeks here, and I know there’s also the Ukranian village, Little Italy, Chinatown, etc. I’m yet to visit all of these neighborhoods!

Carly and I started with Greek beers called Hillas- just to be authentic in Greektown 🙂 We drank that as we continued to stroll around.

There was some carnival stuff going on too…

Finally after seeing what there was to choose from, we made our selections. Carly, after expressing her deep love for gyros, settle for a gyros pita. With sauce only. She loves her sauce 🙂

She would marry a gyros if given the opportunity I think. She said this was one of the best one she’s ever had- not chewy but instead super tender and juicy.

Since she didn’t want the salad on her gyros, I took her extra, asking for “just one more scoop of salad please?” after they loaded up my Greek Salad plate.

Greek salads are hands down my favorite type of salad. And to think I used to hate olives and feta! Crazy! This salad was great- had everything I loved and didn’t skimp on the olives, pepperoncini, or feta. YUM!

Of course we also had to get some spinikopita!

Oh. My. God. I ate so much of that flaky phyllo filled spinachy cheesy goodness- and I was so full- but not one bit regretful. It was amazing just as I had hoped. Craving satisfied!

Carly had a hunch that Mario’s Italian ice was close by- so we asked around and—she was right! It was definitely a walk, but we needed it after eating so much! So, we made our way to Little Italy.

I’d been here once before when I was little. It’s right in the neighborhood where my papa grew up, so it was fun to look around and picture him there when he was little! I neeeed to come back here and try some of the authentic Italian cuisine. I’m always hesitant to go out for Italian food since my mom’s side of the family is Italian and cooks the best food ever- nothing ever compares. But I bet Little Italy would live up to my high standards 😉

Anyway, after some watermelon frozen lemonade (with real chunks of watermelon, lemon rind, and even watermelon seeds!), we were ready for our ride back home and a night out. Another festival checked off my list! And probably the tastiest one yet.

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