Sunday, February 22, 2015

Full Bellies And Tsifteteli

The Belle of Gulf Boulevard and I have driven past the Greek Village Restaurant on numerous occasions. It never occurred to me to stop because I thought it was just a fast food joint. Yesterday I saw an ad in the Tampa Bay Times that illuminated the error of my thinking. Greek Village, located at 11125 Park Boulevard in Seminole, is a dandy sit-down restaurant serving a delightful variety of Greek inspired dishes. And, I do love me some Greek food!

I called ahead for six o'clock reservations, which upon arrival we discovered weren't necessary. After being seated we watched the place fill up rapidly over the next half hour or so. The reason being the first tsifteteli performance. Tsifteteli, you ask? Tsifteteli is the name for the Greek belly dance. This name comes from the Turkish word Chifteteli, which originally means “two strings”. I'll get to the food in a jiffy, but first let me grab a couple of drachmas ...

Photo by the Belle of the Boulevard
Now that I have reminisced, I'll switch my attention to food and wine. A couple of glasses of Retsina got us started as we shared an appetizer of Giant Lima Beans served with a light tomato sauce and a couple cubes of Saganaki cheese. Those beans were huge and tender and oh so tasty. Warm pita quarters were served on the side.

Our entrees came with a soup or a salad. My bride chose the soup special of the day, a Potato, Leek, and Bacon that was light and creamy. No one element was overpowering. You could taste each of the ingredients. I don't think the Belle licked the bowl, but there wasn't a drop left when she was done.

I have been cooking a lot of soups at home lately, so I went with the house salad. While house salads can be rather ho hum, this one wasn't. It was adorned with a dollop of potato salad, beets, olives, San Marzano tomatoes, and pepperoncini.

Next on the table for my bride was the Moussaka, a baked casserole with eggplant, ground sirloin, potato slices, enhanced with a creamy cheese bechamel, then topped with a light tomato sauce. Said she, "That moussaka was probably better than the one I had on Dodecanese in Tarpons Springs."

The Greek Village Roasted Lamb Shank with seasonal veggies and a delightful red sauce called out to me. This shank was flavorful and wonderfully tender.

Ian, our very efficient and personable server, was deserving of the 20% gratuity we added to our $65.86 bill. That total didn't include the bills I tucked in the dancer's shorts, but it did include more than a few glasses of retsina.

To sum up, the food was good, the wine worked its Grecian magic, and the entertainment was entertaining.

Greek Village on Urbanspoon


  1. That place has been around for as long as I can remember...why haven't I ever been there? Looks awesome!

    P.S. Gitcher mitts offen that belly dancer!

    1. Not a problemo sweetest of Pollys. The belly dancer hit me with a restraining order before I got out the door. Musta seen me coming.

      Why the heck have you never been there?

      Happy B day to Jimbo.