Adam Erace Calls Opa a “Great Restaurant”

opa-Bobby-Saritsoglou-400Adam Erace was already a fan of Bobby Saritsoglou’s cooking from Saritsoglou’s time at Santucci’s. There, Erace realized the pizzeria was also a really good neighborhood BYOB. Now Saritsoglou is cooking Greek food at Opa and Erace says the Midtown Village spot is now a “great restaurant.”

[M]eat was where Saritsoglou really shined, whether in the bite-sized dolmades, smoky charred grape-leaf bundles rolled around aggressively spiced keftedes that positively quivered with juiciness, or the shareable Meat Board, a carnivore’s playground that shortly will become a new must-have dish in Philadelphia. Inspired by Greece’s kebab-and-beer psistaria, this scene co-starred four perfectly cooked proteins on a butcher-block backdrop: oregano-rubbed chicken so moist, the word “confit” hardly does it justice; uncased pork-and-beef soutzoukakiasausages shot through with woodsy za’atar; a take on loukaniko, a true sausage deeply perfumed with orange zest and fennel seed; and bifteki, which was like the most unearthly delicious burger patty you’ve ever eaten. The bifteki sat on a thick slice of tomato, a king on a scarlet cushion. I cut into the crunchy caramelized crust of the pan-fried 80/20 beef patty (a light dredge in flour is the key), revealing a glistening interior as red as the fruit it sat upon.

A new chef brings a fresh new menu to Opa [City Paper]
Opa [Foobooz]

New Chef and a New Menu at Opa

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Fried rabbit at Opa

Bobby Saritsoglou, the mustached head chef who took over the helm of Opa in early March, has released his new menu, which will be officially available starting today.

The menu is divided up into Mezedes (small plates), Spreads, Dakos (Barley toast), Gyros, Salates & Lahanika (Salads and Vegetables), Pites (Filo Pies), Macaronia (Pasta), From the Grill, and Trapezi (For the Table).

Highlights include: flash fried smelts with grilled lemon, marinated grilled sardine and heirloom tomato barley toast, duck gyro, wild boar ragu house made egg pasta, swordfish souvlakia with fennel salad, and buttermilk fried rabbit with slaw and bobota corn bread. Maybe not what you think of as Greek food, but the spices were all Greek and it was delicious.

Full menu and photos »

Summer Souvlas at Drury Beer Garden

Drury_beer_garden_Logo Celebrate the first official day of summer with a Summer Souvla at Drury Beer Garden. On Saturday, June 21st and July 5th, Drury Beer Garden, behind Opa, will be celebrating grilled meat. Roasted goat will be served up on the 21st and roasted pig on the 5th. Drink specials, which will be announced the day of the roasts, will also be available too.

Drury Beer Garden [Foobooz]

Opa Celebrates Greek Independence Day

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Opa is celebrating Greek Independence Day (we linked out to Encyclopedia Britannica because it was nice to see them at the top of our search results) today.

During Opa’s happy hour (5 p.m. to 7 p.m.) there will be free bites at the bar. The Bekris cocktail, Metaxa (a brandy based liqueur is regarded as the spirit for the holiday in Greece), gin and bitters is available all day for $5.

A special four-course prixe fixe menu is available all day for $25. An optional $25 wine or spirits pairing is also being offered.

Full menu » 

Celebrate Opa’s Third Anniversary with $3 Food and Drink

opa-turns-three
Today is Opa’s third anniversary and the Greek restaurant is celebrating with a menu of $3 drinks and food. The menu is offered all day and night, at the bar and also at the tables.

Skewers, croquettes, Greekified fries and baklava make up some of the food options while all drafts, Bell’s Two Hearted Ale and a vodka cocktail are all available for just $3.

Full menu »

Estia Greek Taverna Opening in Marlton

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Estia Greek Taverna – Dining Room

The Pashalis family that owns Estia in Philadelphia is in expansion mode. Brothers Pete and Nick along with Pete’s brother-in-law, John Lois are bringing their take on Greek and Mediterranean cuisine to Marlton in early 2014. Estia Greek Taverna will replace the former Pietro’s (which they also own) at 140 W Route 70.

Read more »

Opa Hosts Greek Wine Dinner

Tomorrow, Tuesday, July 23rd Opa is hosting a wine dinner featuring Greek wines. The $45 per person dinner includes four courses, all accompanied by different wines. As you dine you’ll learn about the wines and varietals, some of which date back to Aristotle’s time.

Full menu » 

Where We’re Eating: Kanella, Still Compelling

34_Kanella_Emily Frances Olson

Kanella, the endearingly small, five-year-old Cyprian BYO sits at the corner of 10th and Spruce, containing wicker chairs, wooden tables, and exposed brick walls graced with copper cookware. Anything more would be a disservice to the chef. Food is the focus here, and there’s a certain nece­ssitarianism to Konstantinos Pitsillides’s coo­king—an effortless persuasion that this sort of cuisine should only be prepared by him, that there is exactly one way to compose each dish, and that Pitsillides is the only chef in the world doing it correctly. Soak your bread in the brightly spiced yogurt sauce that accompanies the lamb dumplings, and let his famed “katsiki” stew’s layers of flavor unwind for a lifetime. His food is convincing, his talent is compelling, and his restaurant is still worth a visit. Or a hundred.

Kanella
1001 Spruce Street
215-922-1773

Photo by Frances Olson

First appeared in the May, 2013 issue of Philadelphia magazine.

Bryn Mawr Lands Area’s First Pinkberry

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The Philadelphia area’s first Pinkberry is slated to open this April in the Bryn Mawr Square Shopping Center. Pinkberry was a pioneer in the frozen yogurt craze and has 225 locations worldwide. The Main Line location will also be among the first in the nation to roll out Pinkberry’s new menu which includes Pinkberrygreek the chain’s non-frozen Greek yogurt.

Speaking of Greek, Greek in Bryn Mawr »

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