Xara in Greek means joy, and number 339 of Patision Street in Athens is where the joy of eating ice cream or other desserts lives. My parents first took me there to show me where they used to go on dates when they were young. Nowadays, Xara is considered to be a very old-fashioned spot among the youth, though a romantic side can still be detected in enjoying a retro decorated dessert in the 80s style outdoor tables.
No matter how démodé, Xara continues to attract Athenians of every kind and age for two reasons. Reason number one: there you can find the best ekmek in town. It is rumored that back in the ’20s the recipe for Xara’s ekmek, well hidden in a shoe, emmigrated from Istanbul to Athens. Politiko ekmek, as we call it, is a dessert accompanied with cream or ice cream of your choice, but I would strongly suggest trying it with kaimaki ice cream.
Reason number two: the Chicago ice cream — a tower of delicious chocolate ice cream with whipped cream, roasted almonds and chocolate syrup. Chocolate lovers, don’t skip that one! Be prepared! The portions are huge and delicious; you will definitely struggle to finish your dessert.