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Vangelis

Active member
Some time ago a colleague of mine traveled to Athens and asked me for some recommendations for Exarcheia and I put this guide together for him. There is so much more to Exarcheia than what I have put together below but it gives a little inkling of how amazing this suburb is. The real beauty of Exarcheia is to just walk around and discover new places. A walk to Lofos Strefi will yield a tourist-free view of the whole of Athens including the Acropolis and Likavitos. The Laiki Market is every Saturday morning with fresh fruit & veggies and fish. Sundays there is a small number of food stalls in the Exarcheia Square. There are record shops and book shops all over Exarcheia and you can only find them by walking down every interesting-looking street you can find.

Anyway, below are some of the more interesting places I frequent when I am in the area:

Restaurants:

Άμα Λάχει – Really nice for dinner or lunch. In the grounds of a former school. More up-market Greek food. Popular with Greeks (with some tourists) so don’t expect to be able to get in on a Saturday after 9pm – it will be about 1hr wait.

Ροζαλία – Nice setting with half Greek customers and half American/German tourists. Close to Εξάρχεια πλατεία so could get “hairy” but usually most of the activity will be in the square itself so it might be good if you like a bit of activity but from a safe distance. This restaurant has a lot of variety in its Greek food. You can get pretty-much anything here. Try the beer here – order a bottle of Ικαριώτισσα.

Ο Τσέλιγκας – This is much closer to the real thing that the other 2 above. This is cooking from your mum/grandma. Small place with not a lot of variety but more genuine Greek cooking. I went here a lot.

Μπαρμπαγιάννης – Another great genuine Greek food restaurant. Oven cooked, very heavy on the oil (as most good village style Greek food is) but you can’t beat sitting down on a nice sunny day with a selection of λαδερά φαγητά and of course, the obligatory Mythos beer!

For the vegans:

There are many vegan and vegetarian offerings at most Greek restaurants but there are a couple of noteworthy vegan only restaurants in Exarcheia:

Mama Tierra – The food here is very high quality and they even have an amazing vegan moussaka.

Cookoomela Grill – The BEST vegan souvlakis EVER! They don’t use falafels, instead they use grilled mushrooms and their potatoes are not fried but baked in the oven. So they are both vegan AND healthy! You will not regret going here.

Cats and Monsters – Vegan ice cream!!! I can’t recommend this as this shop opened up after COVID hit so I have not been able to visit it as yet. I am adding it here because I am sure that it will not disappoint.

Cafes and Bistro/Bars:

My “secret” cool coffee shop is Σέλας. Tourist free. All the Greeks that go there are uber-cool. You can have a coffee (Greek/frappe/freddo) or even a beer or other alcoholic beverage.

Various cool café/bars can be found on Valtetsiou. Walk up from Rosalia (it’s on Valtetsiou) right up to when it intersects Mavromichali. There you will find Warehouse Speciality Blends where you can get western style coffees like latte’s etc and they make them with good quality beans. Also in the evening you can have some very good spirits like single malt whiskeys etc. On that intersection you will also find Σουσουράδα which is great for an evening snack. They have one of the best Retsina’s that I have had. Retsina is unfortunately a dying style of wine because it is not taken seriously but when done right, it complements a Greek meal beautifully. The Sokos Retsina that you can get here is made by a wine maker that has won many awards for their wines, not just in Greece but throughout Europe.

Evening bars can be found on Koletti. Revolt Street Bar is one that I regularly ended up in.

Bouzoukia

You can find these on Emmanouil Benaki between Andrea Metaxa and Arachovis streets. There are many bistro bars along that strip and some have bouzoukia on various nights usually Thu/Fri/Sat. I was quite drunk at Τζερεμές on one particular night…

If your wife is into shoes, like mine is, she can find a number of shoe shops at Χαραλίου Τρικούπη street near Πανεπιστημίου. One of the shoe shops is very cheap and good quality.

Themistokleous street is interesting to walk down during the day with some interesting shops, etc. Also a good souvlaki place that is famous because they make them with mushrooms with potatoes in the oven – nothing fried. But it’s more takeaway, no seating or formal tables.
 
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francescool

Active member
Some time ago a colleague of mine traveled to Athens and asked me for some recommendations for Exarcheia and I put this guide together for him. There is so much more to Exarcheia than what I have put together below but it gives a little inkling of how amazing this suburb is. The real beauty of Exarcheia is to just walk around and discover new places. A walk to Lofos Strefi will yield a tourist-free view of the whole of Athens including the Acropolis and Likavitos. The Laiki Market is every Saturday morning with fresh fruit & veggies and fish. Sundays there is a small number of food stalls in the Exarcheia Square. There are record shops and book shops all over Exarcheia and you can only find them by walking down every interesting-looking street you can find.

Anyway, below are some of the more interesting places I frequent when I am in the area:

Restaurants:

Άμα Λάχει – Really nice for dinner or lunch. In the grounds of a former school. More up-market Greek food. Popular with Greeks (with some tourists) so don’t expect to be able to get in on a Saturday after 9pm – it will be about 1hr wait.

Ροζαλία – Nice setting with half Greek customers and half American/German tourists. Close to Εξάρχεια πλατεία so could get “hairy” but usually most of the activity will be in the square itself so it might be good if you like a bit of activity but from a safe distance. This restaurant has a lot of variety in its Greek food. You can get pretty-much anything here. Try the beer here – order a bottle of Ικαριώτισσα.

Ο Τσέλιγκας – This is much closer to the real thing that the other 2 above. This is cooking from your mum/grandma. Small place with not a lot of variety but more genuine Greek cooking. I went here a lot.

Μπαρμπαγιάννης – Another great genuine Greek food restaurant. Oven cooked, very heavy on the oil (as most good village style Greek food is) but you can’t beat sitting down on a nice sunny day with a selection of λαδερά φαγητά and of course, the obligatory Mythos beer!

For the vegans:

There are many vegan and vegetarian offerings at most Greek restaurants but there are a couple of noteworthy vegan only restaurants in Exarcheia:

Mama Tierra – The food here is very high quality and they even have an amazing vegan moussaka.

Cookoomela Grill – The BEST vegan souvlakis EVER! They don’t use falafels, instead they use grilled mushrooms and their potatoes are not fried but baked in the oven. So they are both vegan AND healthy! You will not regret going here.

Cats and Monsters – Vegan ice cream!!! I can’t recommend this as this shop opened up after COVID hit so I have not been able to visit it as yet. I am adding it here because I am sure that it will not disappoint.

Cafes and Bistro/Bars:

My “secret” cool coffee shop is Σέλας. Tourist free. All the Greeks that go there are uber-cool. You can have a coffee (Greek/frappe/freddo) or even a beer or other alcoholic beverage.

Various cool café/bars can be found on Valtetsiou. Walk up from Rosalia (it’s on Valtetsiou) right up to when it intersects Mavromichali. There you will find Warehouse Speciality Blends where you can get western style coffees like latte’s etc and they make them with good quality beans. Also in the evening you can have some very good spirits like single malt whiskeys etc. On that intersection you will also find Σουσουράδα which is great for an evening snack. They have one of the best Retsina’s that I have had. Retsina is unfortunately a dying style of wine because it is not taken seriously but when done right, it complements a Greek meal beautifully. The Sokos Retsina that you can get here is made by a wine maker that has won many awards for their wines, not just in Greece but throughout Europe.

Evening bars can be found on Koletti. Revolt Street Bar is one that I regularly ended up in.

Bouzoukia

You can find these on Emmanouil Benaki between Andrea Metaxa and Arachovis streets. There are many bistro bars along that strip and some have bouzoukia on various nights usually Thu/Fri/Sat. I was quite drunk at Τζερεμές on one particular night…

If your wife is into shoes, like mine is, she can find a number of shoe shops at Χαραλίου Τρικούπη street near Πανεπιστημίου. One of the shoe shops is very cheap and good quality.

Themistokleous street is interesting to walk down during the day with some interesting shops, etc. Also a good souvlaki place that is famous because they make them with mushrooms with potatoes in the oven – nothing fried. But it’s more takeaway, no seating or formal tables.
Wow this is such an excellent guide! I will keep it in my back pocket for when I visit Athens, my future self is very grateful. I can't wait for strolls in the square and trying out all of the tasty vegan options
 
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