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Eating in Crete

September 19, 2022

So it’s Monday, and Sharon and I reunited without incident on Saturday for our culinary adventure. Since then we’ve mostly been eating. Our little hotel, Villa Diktynna, is in a village called Hersonissos, a bit east of Heraklion. The village has a surprising number of restaurants and shops, and is a lively place to stroll through during the evening.

According to our itinerary, we’re to eat dinner each evening at Restaurant Rouga tou Mpaoula, a family-owned establishment run by Mrs. Maria, who will be our cooking teacher this week. I could never imagine eating in the same restaurant for six straight days; but the first two nights put the lie to that. One of her sons crafts a special menu for us each night, with different dishes.

On Saturday he brought out black olive tapenade and fresh yoghurt with bread, then a Cretan salad including hard-boiled eggs bathed in balsamic vinegar till they took on a lovely dark purple hue, followed by cheese baked in phyllo pastry and drizzled with honey, goat stew with French fries and Cretan carbonara (broad pasta noodles with Cretan cheese and smoked pork). The dessert tray held a variety of delights including baklava, crème brûlée, panna cotta and about eight other choices.

After breakfast Sunday we walked to the bigger town down the hill, Koutouloufari, to get a hat for Sharon and see what charms this metropolis had to offer. We found a café overlooking the beach for a relaxing lunch, then trekked back up to Hersonissos, deciding we much preferred the intimacy of village life.

For Sunday’s meal we began with a mountain salad, followed by zucchini fritters and saganaki (fried cheese), then grilled beef liver that was absolutely delicious, caramelized on the outside, tender on the inside. If I had seen beef liver on the menu I would have passed it right by, as I’m not a fan; but I’ll tell you I was glad I didn’t have a choice. This was followed by a stew called kleftiko, or “stolen lamb,” with zucchini, carrots and potatoes and topped with a cheese that had become crunchy when they passed it under the broiler. Again a panoply of desserts: I chose crème caramel.

Beef liver

Some images from the pool courtyard at Villa Diktynna, where the bougainvillea is a riot of hot pink.

From → Greece, Uncategorized

  1. Lois permalink

    What fun! The food sounds delicious and the views are beautiful!

  2. John permalink

    I would like to try that liver myself. But the bougainvillea is a reason to go there all by itself.

  3. Cheri Anderson permalink

    OOh that bougainvilla! and the views of the sea.Marvelous!

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