Usually this term refers to a college’s Greek life, but in this case I urge you to go and explore Charlotte’s Greek culinary scene.
We actually have it pretty good here- Yiasou Greek Festival is put on by the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church every year in September. For three days you can eat and drink as much Greek food as you want- my personal favorites include Greek fries and baklava sundaes. It is just as good as it sounds.
But the Greek Festival is like Christmas. It comes and goes way faster than you want it to.
Lucky for us there are two spots that we can flock to in search of amazing Greek coffee, food, and culture.
You’ve seen the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Charlotte has its own version of Dancing Zorba’s- it’s called The Mad Greek Café.
The whole restaurant is decorated in blue and white, reminiscient of the Greek flag and iconic locations such as Mykonos. I always get the chicken souvlaki dinner, which is chicken marinated in Greek spices, served with a huge Greek salad, rice, sauteed veggies, pita, tzatziki, and Greek fries. Think of it like Greek Thanksgiving, that’s how much food you will receive. What makes it Greek you ask? A mixture of savory spices and feta. Lots and lots of feta cheese. And all in, it’s the best deal at $12.95. But getting baklava after is a non-negotiable. Trust me that you won’t be able to resist this nut and honey flaky pastry. This family-owned operation has been around for 26 years, and they love serving the best Greek food ever to the community. Almost as much as I love coming in to eat my body weight equivalent in baklava and souvlaki.
Mocco is situated on the same street as Mad Greek (coincidence, I think not!) right on South Boulevard. I am kicking myself for not visiting sooner.
It is a European café with a fantastic array of coffees, sandwiches, and pastries to choose from. Baklava cheesecake anyone? I have only visited once but can’t wait to go back and get my hands on another “Moccocino” which is their spin on a cappuccino (obvi). But here’s the plot twist- it has white chocolate mixed in to compliment the robust flavor of the Greek coffee. Get it iced and you will be unstoppable for the rest of your day.
Where should I go next? What other Greek places have I also been missing out on? Give me a yeehaw on my Instagram @CLTChomp!