This was our night view from Koukoumavlos , which is recognized as one of the best restaurants in all of Greece. The chef Niko Pouliasis is recognized for an inventive and experimental play with food. Among his signature dishes are Tiramisu with Smoked Eggplant and Kataifi wrapped Cheese with Rose and Watermelon Syrup and Cucumber Jelly.
It may have been a mistake to order the same thing, but my boyfriend and I had the same choice for both the appetizer and main meal, and we did not want to share! It would have been nice to try the salmon dish however, which sounded equally interesting.
We started with Grilled Foie Gras with Grape Syrup, Raisin paste, and Ouzo jelly. I appreciated the very generous portion of foie gras. I always enjoy a jelly texture with the silky foie gras, and the grape/raisin flavors added another layer of lusciousness to the foie gras. I drank sauternees which of course perfectly accompanied the sweetly rich plate.
For our main meal we had steak and mashed potatoes, parmesan ice cream, topped with a sesame crisp. Our steaks were cooked perfectly, but I was disappointed in the cut of steak. For such a venerated restaurant, I could see and taste that the quality of the meat was not up to par. For the prices, they could have imported any cut from any part of the world, trust me. It did taste good, but this was a noticable disparity for the caliber of this restaurant.
The mashed potatoes were creamy and lush. The drizzle of truffle oil infused an addictive earthy flavor. I personally enjoyed the parmesan ice cream. It basically tasted like cold parmesan, and the texture of the ice cream went perfectly well with the sesame crisps that accompanied the dish. I did not like the ice cream as much when I ate it with the steak. My dining companion however, would have nothing to do with the ice cream, and I was pleased to eat his portion!
Instead of getting dessert (and if you’ve read my other posts, you know this is a rarity for me!), that night I wanted to keep ordering glasses of the cabernet savignon french wine (yes i drank imported wine in santorini…shoot me!) And Niko was on a roll with his belgian beer. That is how we ended the meal, savoring our drinks and enjoying the view of Fira.
The service was flawless. They made us feel very special and gave us the best table we had been promised when making our reservation. Each server explained the dishes well and answered any questions we had with enthusiasm and care.
Overall I would recommend Koukoumavlos for the atmosphere and adventure for the palate. There were more adventerous dishes on the menu that I didn’t try but would like to at another time. I was just so in the mood for steak!
I can’t say that the meal measured up to my grand expectations, but we thoroughly enjoyed the meal and experience, and I would certainly go back.