Sunday, May 29, 2011
Zenon Taverna - Brings Back and Creates New Wonderful Memories
It's been a while since Dan and I have eaten at one of our Astoria Greek food favorites, Zenon Taverna. We finally went back last week after a successful afternoon at the first Queens Swap, and as ever, our experience at Zenon sealed the deal on what was a very enjoyable day.
Although we've tried a lot of items on their extensive menu, we went pretty standard and light that afternoon. However, as simple and classic our selections were, they also tasted wonderful. Here's what we enjoyed:
Chicken Souvlaki Platter - Given that Dan is still on his strict exercise and diet regime, he wanted to order something light and healthy and went with this grilled chicken kebob option. Although a simple dish, it was really excellent, boasting juicy chicken cubes that were perfectly charred on the outside. For me, dipping the chicken into the creamy, zesty tzatziki was the best part, and I was a little addicted to it after Dan gave me an initial taste. The lemon potatoes that came as a side were also flavorful and light, stepping up the hearty aspect in this dish.
Zenon Pita - When I first read the description of this pita, I right away noticed that halloumi cheese was included - and based on that, I was immediately sold. Adoring this firm, salty cheese that's great for grilling, I was excited to also see that it was paired with grilled pork loin, which I've already had (and loved) at Zenon. The two were a nice combination indeed, stuffed in an oversized thin pita, which loosely hugged its contents. Once again, the homemade tzatziki enhanced all the flavors on the inside of the pita and helped bring in a welcome element of freshness.
Dessert - As a surprise from our friend Constantina whose family owns Zenon, we received a generous piece of semolina cake, which was flavored with sweet syrup and rosewater. Moist and decadent, the cake was a splurge, our favorite part being the sweet, floral aftertaste you got at the end of each bite. We ended up taking most of it home, and I'd recommend eating it with a refreshing piece of melon or strawberries.
Service and Cost:
Even considering how busy and bustling the restaurant was on a Sunday, the service didn't suffer at all. Our water glasses were always full, fresh pita and olive bread were at the table in minutes and our dishes arrived within good reason. There's something to be said for the warm, family atmosphere, and regardless of your heritage, Zenon makes you feel at home.
Costs are affordable, especially given the generous portions. The above meal, which I described set us back $38 including tax and tip.
3 Familiar Mmmms
Zenon Taverna - 34-10 31st Avenue, Astoria, NY 11106
N/Q Train to Broadway