I had a recent opportunity to try the new bar menu at Emilitsa. Though I recently re-reviewed Portland’s Greek restaurant, I was exceptionally happy to return for even more. They always amaze me with their exquisite food and drinks and first-rate service, so it’s safe to say that, for me, too much Emilitsa is never enough. Here’s what I tried.
Sazzy Goes to Greece – Bulleit Rye, cane sugar, Ouzo 12, lemon oil
An excellent cocktail, reminding me of a Manhattan because of it’s full whiskey flavor, but with a little more sweetness, and hints of herb and citrus. A stellar concoction if you enjoy bourbon.
Elies – spiced Mediterranean olives
Just your basic spiced olives here, but a very nice little bar food to go with a beer, wine, or their fabulous drinks.
Fava – dal lentil puree, slivered vidalia, garlic toast
One of my favorites at Emilitsa. This spread is good enough to eat by the pound. I know some people are offended by raw onion, but this is one of the best uses of it I’ve ever had, offering flavors that put the perfect touch on the on the little open-faced sandwich on top of crisp toast.
Sloppy Yanni – Greek sloppy joe
These saucy sweet and mustard-y sliders are a good choice for those looking for something beefy, but get your napkin ready. They are truly sloppy.
Plevra Choirinou Kreatos – smoked pork ribs, anise-citrus glaze
I can’t say I’m a huge fan of ribs, but the reduced orange glaze on these babies makes them more than worthy of a try. If you like ribs, you’ll love them.
Little Souvlaki – daily selection
The ones we had were swordfish, but they will change regularly between pork, beef, fish, and whatever else the chef comes up with. And it’s safe to say that no one – and I mean no one – does souvlaki like Emilitsa. I’ve never had swordfish like that.
Plevra Arnu – grilled lamb rib chop, pomegranate au jus
A great rare lamb lollipop with a nice flavor added by the pom. Lamb lovers will swoon at this winner of a dish.
Tiganito Kotopoulo – fried chicken wings, spicy oyster sauce, lime
An unusual take on wings with the oyster sauce, these carried more flavors than any wings I can remember. Salty, spicy, and a bit sweet all at the same time, the crispy guys were absolutely delicious. I was a little disappointed we ate them last because I had room for only a few.
Thanks to owners John and Demo Regas and very humble chef Niko Regas for their hospitality and the chance to bring their food – in pictures – to my hungry readers.
Emilitsa 547 Congress St.
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