Being a small Greek island with no airport, Paxos is a lot more authentic than some of its neighbours. The absence of mass tourism can also be noticed in the island’s gastronomic offer. Most dishes are closer to the original recipes, offering visitors an unforgettable and delicious taste of Greece.
So let’s dive a little deeper into Greek cuisine. What makes it unique and so tasty? What ingredients are used, and what should you try on Paxos? And, more importantly, where should you go to add a unique, culinary twist to your holidays? We know all about Greece in general and about Paxos in particular. Keep reading to discover where Paxos hides the best places to dine.
Greek cuisine: abundant in ingredients and taste
Its unique geography, a mountainous chunk of the European continent and hundreds of islands, combined with its healthy climate, offer the Greek cuisine a huge variety of ingredients. Meats, fish, seafood, vegetables, and fruits can all be found here. The fact that almost nothing needs to be imported in refrigerated ships, ensures maximum taste.
Many Greek dishes call for local ingredients like olive oil, wheat, tomatoes, aubergine, and feta cheese. The Greek climate favours the breeding of goats and sheep over cattle, while the Ionian and Aegean Seas provide abundant fish and seafood. Herbs commonly used to provide that typical Greek flavour are thyme, oregano, mint, and fennel.
Go where the locals dine
It’s a rule of thumb in holiday destinations: if you want to eat well, go where the locals like to go. While most visitors stay close to the sights and their accommodation, afraid of the unknown, the locals know exactly where to go for the best Greek coffee, the tastiest moussaka, or the sweetest baklava.
So where do they go to dine on Paxos? We have made a list of the restaurants that currently draw local crowds. But do ask around, as places tend to go out of business, get new chefs are hired and new restaurants open all the time.
To Paxoimadi, Lakka
To Paxoimadi is located in Lakka, by a beautiful natural harbour. Its tables are just metres from the shore so you can watch all the action from the fishermen and yachters. This restaurant is frequented by locals and is also a popular choice with Greek visitors. The fried cod in garlic sauce, the orange braised pork shank, and the beetroot salad are some of the guests’ favourites. You can expect friendly service from Joanna and Maria.
Averto Restaurant, Magazia
Want to get out into the countryside? This new and hip restaurant is located in the small village of Magazia, on the road between Lakka and Gaios. For lunch, dinner, or a sunset cocktail, this is a nice, chilled-out place with views across the green hills, out to the sea. Its cuisine is a creative fusion of Greek classics and international inventions, and the service you receive here is as friendly as it can get.
Fanalino Restaurant, Gaios
In the island’s capital, Gaios, is Fanalino, somewhat of an institution. You can find this restaurant in one of the pedestrian streets behind the harbour, in between boutiques and travel agencies, and right by a lively square. Here, you have the feeling that you’re at the place to be in Paxos.
According to online reviews, guests are delighted with the beer served in frozen glasses, the prawn saganaki, and the octopus in aubergine dip. As one guest says puts it: “Trust me, I’ve been in this business for 25 years. This is a really clean and nice place with professional waiters, with an attention to detail that is hard to find these days.” The restaurant also sells fruit jams, made by the owner’s grandmother.
Glyfada Beach Villas and Restaurant, Monodendri Beach
The shimmering pool and the deep blue Ionian Sea keep you company when you have dinner at Glyfada Beach Villas and Restaurant outside Loggos. This restaurant is a great option if you want to be close to nature instead of in a bustling fishing village. Its new chef dishes up traditional Greek food that is popular with gourmets from all over the world.
This pool restaurant opens on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Making a reservation is recommended: (+30) 26610 -31769. The resort’s co-owner, Doreen, will give you a VIP treatment after you park here: in her golf buggy, she will drive you down to the restaurant.
This is one of the longest-established restaurants on Paxos, located in a side street behind the harbour road. While it doesn’t have the sea views that To Paxoimadi has, the dishes and flavours make up for that. This family-run restaurant cooks its fresh ingredients on the souvlaki grill and is famous for its rabbit, lemon roast potatoes, and stuffed mushrooms. Expect friendly service and a busy atmosphere, making this the place to be for dinnertime.