The Real Greek is a family-friendly restaurant that brings the flavour of the Eastern Mediterranean to Norwich. Although it’s not an independent, the company is committed to providing an authentic Greek atmosphere together with healthy and delicious food. There are options for everyone, from meat-eaters to pescatarians, vegetarians and vegans.
The Real Greek opened in August, and it is a culinary trip to the Aegean! It sources core ingredients directly from the finest suppliers in Greece, including olive oil that can be found in everything from the houmous to the salads. The honey is made by bees on the island of Ikaria, which is renowned for the longevity of its people, while the feta, found in its spicy feta dip and in the filo pastry parcels among many other dishes, hails from Epirus, a region in Northern Greece.
The Real Greek works with chefs in Athens to keep on top of the latest trends from the capital. The creative direction of the kitchen is led by Tonia Buxton, a celebrity chef and the face of Greek food in Britain. Tonia brings a passion for authentic Greek cuisine, born from an early apprenticeship in her mother’s kitchen in Cyprus.
Diners will not be disappointed by the choice and diversity of delicious food starting from £4.75 per plate.
The cold meze, a selection of small cold dishes served as appetizers, has lots of choice such as dips, houmous, tzatziki, and lentil and beetroot salads with flatbreads.
For something different, try the Santorini Fava, yellow lentils from the Greek island cooked and blended with herbs and spices and topped with Santorini capers and onions, or the Melitzanosalata, a light and fragrant blend of smoked aubergine, garlic, shallots and lemon.
The Greeks like to take their time over food and there’s a reason for that. There’s so much food and so much choice you need time to decide and to digest it.
The hot meze has many delicious small plates to choose from. My favourites were salt cod, which is home cured and dipped in beer batter; naughty-but-nice halloumi fries with orange and chilli dip; and Tonia’s prawns in rich tomato sauce. The spinach tiropitakia, filo pastry filled with creamy spinach and feta, is handmade daily and tastes delicious, as does the classic Greek moussaka.
Catering for both meat eaters and vegetarians, there’s some tasty grilled options to choose from including chicken, lamb or pork skewers, Loukaniko beef and pork sausage skewer, lamb meatballs, grilled octopus, vegan meatballs with a Soutzoukakia sauce, grilled aubergine and halloumi and vegetable skewer.
Also on offer are Souvlaki wraps served on flatbread with chips inside, with homemade tzatziki, fresh tomatoes, red onion and sweet paprika. There’s plenty of filling choice including Loukaniko sausage, pork belly, pork skewer, chicken, lamb Meatballs or halloumi.
A must try is the Greek filo custard pie, Bougatsa. It’s a traditional dessert from Sérres, North Greece. Don’t let the 958 calories noted by the description put you off. The light filo pastry is indulgently filled with custard cream, served warm and topped with vanilla ice-cream and cinnamon. Other lovely choices include baklava, Greek yoghurt with walnuts in syrup, caramel and pecan cheesecake, and chocolate mousse cake along with a selection of luxury ice creams.
The Real Greek’s wine list pays homage to the ancient Greeks, who pioneered new methods of wine production. The variety of wines use a diverse range of grapes from across different regions in Greece, and also feature a number of vintages from winemaking communities in Europe. Also available are beers and cider, fresh juices and Greek coffee and tea.
Things to know
Remember the Giraffe Restaurant? This has replaced it in the heart of Chantry Square.
The mezes are served on small plates on afternoon tea stands.
- Available from Sunday to Thursday from 5pm, try the Filoxenia Dinner Menu where you can choose four dishes for £13.95pp.
- Available all day, every day, are two set menus for two to share – Tonia’s Selection at £36 or Santorini at £40.
- Reserve a table at www.therealgreek.com
409 Chantry Square, Norwich, NR2 1SZ. Call 01603 555165 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Review by Kate Morfoot – follow her on Instagram @Love2Eat2Travel