Tarpon Springs, FL is the Greek capital of the United States (highest Greek American population). Also, the place to buy big sea sponges. Just a few miles miles and many strip malls south of us (Homosassa River, FL), we were intrigued to bring you a wonderful Greek experience, slowly becoming one of our favorite cuisines. Conveniently, his cousin doesn’t live far from their either with a beautiful woman of Greek decent.
Generally speaking, if you have not yet picked up on this factoid about us, we usually stay away from the touristy areas. The docks in Tarpon Springs are everything touristy, from little shops with spoons to crowded sidewalks with people carrying maps. Nonetheless, it was a cute area with so many food options. We met our friends at Dimitris. With a water front view and somewhat busy tables, our expectations ran high. The atmosphere was relaxed and the place was clean.
The saganaki was a must, in fact we probably should have just gotten him his own. With the squirt of a quartered lemon and the ignition of a lighter, the cheese lite up and the room yelled “oompa”. The cheese was served golden brown and oozed out of it’s thin fried layer when it was cut into. Just as quick as the flame burned out, we scarfed it up. Like any awkward sharing of food that one tiny piece was left, but we made him eat because we all knew he wanted to, but was being polite. ($7)
We knew the cheese wasn’t enough to get us started so also ordered a second appetizer. An order of grilled calamari was shared between us (except him, the non seafood eater). I usually have my calamari fried so I do not have a comparison. This was done in a light olive oil with lemon and herbs. It was on the chewy side, but had mild flavor. I felt the texture may have been a little off, but not having had it that way, I could be wrong. The others loved it! ($12)
I knew I was going to regret it in fear of the amount of food it sounded like, but I still wanted to give it a go. I ordered the combination platter. This came with a few of their signature dishes as one dish. The combo platter came with three dolmades, moussaka, pastitsio and beef souvlaki. The dolmades were quite size-able, but did not stay together. As soon as I took a bite, it completely started to fall apart. They were served with avgolemono (egg and lemon sauce), but I prefer the less creamy version and more lemon flavor. It required more lemon. The moussaka is an egg plant casserole type dish with ground beef and potato. The pastitisio is another layered dish, but this is with noodles and ground beef. For both, you may think of as being similar to lasagna. Each entree came with soup or salad. I went the salad route and was super disappointed. It was the worst salad. Most ingredients were not geek and dressing was thick and almost potato in texture. All salads at the table were not created equal and some missed ingredients. I would recommend getting the soup… ($20)
He had pork souvlaki. It was chard cube pork on skewer with a strong chard smokey flavor. He thought it was tough in texture and not a lot of seasoning other than the grilling process. He said he would have ranked it in the middle, it was not terrible, but most certainly not on pare with the souvlaki we have had in Maryland (Mythos Mediterranean Grill and Big Greek Cafe). It did originally come with a few vegetables, but he had them removed. The pita was soft and warm and the tzatziki was standard and without large cucumber chunks. He ordered a beef soup and that was decent. Plus, the side of Greek potatoes. Potatoes, just a plain old big potato in butter with some salt and pepper. It was sliced into large pieces and skinless. ($14)
Greek town did not impress, but there are plenty of other options to choose from…