Roumeli Athens

Image by Dimitris Hall

Roumeli – My go-to neighborhood taverna

I’ve been coming to this incredibly authentic, cheap, unpretentious gem of a neighborhood Greek taverna since I remember myself. Roumeli (even though in my family we just call it ‘Spyros’ after the friendly manager) is where, as a kid, I’d bring my Game Boy to sit through boring celebrations. For many years my familiarity with it meant that I didn’t respect it as much as it deserved.

Growing up, though, I was able to open up to its true greatness and nowadays I see it as my duty to bring Roumeli to the attention (and stomach) of as many people as possible. My favorite part is always my friends’ reaction after we’ve had a meal to remember and Spyros tells us how much we need to pay: it invariably falls somewhere between delighted and shocked disbelief.

I always make it a point to order fish when I’m paying a visit and even though anything’s a safe bet here (I’ve never actually seen their menu and have no idea if they have one!) I recommend getting some of the fattest French fries (2€), the tastiest roast sardines and the juiciest, firmest horta you’ll ever have had the delight to savor.

If you need more convincing, it’s in a very quiet part of Nea Smyrni (four blocks from tram stop Aigaiou), surrounded by trees & plants and with a heated exterior. Just remember that Spyros doesn’t speak English, but “he always finds a way!” – there’s always somebody around eager to help out.

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Details about this spot



Thrakis 1, Athens

Telephone number


Opening Times

Mon - Sat 19:30 - 01:00, Sun 12:00 - 17:00


Per person from: € 8
Last Changed Date: 2016-05-19 11:45:13 +0200 (Thu, 19 May 2016)