1502 Centre St. N.
Calgary, (403) 276-8363
Dinner for two with drinks: $55
Signature Dish: Arni kleftiko
Signature Drink: Ouzo
The white and blue exterior of Santorini, which has stood on Centre Street since 1986, is soothing — especially on a snowy almost-summer evening.
It beckons with a promise of warm hospitality and straight-forward Greek food — and doesn’t disappoint.
Delicious, reliable favourites are Cypriot family-run Santorini’s secret to success.
Saganaki ($12) is not set alight as other tavernas might do, but it doesn’t need the drama. The pan-fried cheese has a flawless salty, lemony, not-too-oily balance against soft, fresh pita ($3).
Bland calamari ($12) is a bit of a disappointment. The fried squid have a great texture but both the tzatiki and batter seem to be missing spicing.
Mains come on enormous oval plates. Roast lamb ($25) is the best in the city. Arni kleftiko — its name comes from lamb stolen from a herd and furtively cooked in a hole in the ground for hours — is imbued with garlic, lemon and rosemary, and comes off the bone in tender chunks.
Beef souvlaki ($26) is a skewer of tender filet mignon. All entrees come with why-can’t-I-make-these-at-home lemony potatoes (crisp outside, soft inside), rice pilaf and green and yellow beans.
Try the bougatsa ($5.50), a cream pastry for a sweet change from baklava.
PATIO PARTY Bonterra’s (1016 Eighth St. S.W.) annual patio party is Tuesday at 5 p.m. For $35, you get wine and hors d’oeuvres on one of Calgary’s best patios. Go to www.bonterra.ca for more information on the event and how to get tickets.
FARMER’S MARKET A revitalized Hillhurst Sunnyside Farmers’ Market is now open for the season at the community centre (1320 Fifth Ave. N.W.) every Wednesday 3:30-7:30 p.m. Visit armersmarket.hillhurstsunnyside.org to get more details.
COCHRANE BAKERY Gluten-free, all-natural baked goods are the focus of GF Patisserie (122 Third Ave. W., Cochrane). Try their raisin bread, cream puffs and cupcakes, all made without gluten. Check out www.gfpatisserie.com.
Tasty Greek favourites