Review: Kokkari Estiatorio.

When I visited the island of Santorini back in 2013, I completely fell in love with Greek cuisine. Vibrant vegetables, fresh seafood and meat, and aromatic herbs make up this delicious cuisine. Kokkari Estiatorio has been a favorite in San Francisco for over a decade serving simple yet fantastic Greek inspired food.

Kokkari Estiatorio is extremely popular so snatching a reservation can be difficult. The restaurant itself is quite large but still has a warm cozy feel. They even have an open fire with various meats roasting on the spit.

The restaurant has quite a large dinner menu so I recommend coming with a group of people in order to try as many dishes as possible. We ordered mostly appetizers to share family style.

Spanakotiropita: Traditional Filo Pies of Spinach, Feta, Leeks, and Dill (8/10).

Spanakotiropita: Traditional Phyllo Pies of Spinach, Feta Cheese, Leeks, and Dill (8/10).

Kolokithokeftethes: Crispy Zucchini Cakes with Cucumber and Mint Yogurt Dressing (7.5/10).

Kolokithokeftethes: Crispy Zucchini Cakes with Cucumber and Mint Yogurt Dressing (7.5/10).

Marithes Tiganites: Crispy Smelts with Garlic Potato Skordalia and Lemon (7/10).

Marithes Tiganites: Crispy Smelts with Garlic Potato Skordalia and Lemon (7/10).

Pita Flatbread with Kalamata Olives, Tomatoes, Caramelized Onions, and Myzithra (8.5/10).

Pita Flatbread with Kalamata Olives, Tomatoes, Caramelized Onions, and Myzithra (8.5/10).

Grilled Calamari stuffed with Feta, Fennel, and Orange with Black Olives (7.5/10).

Grilled Calamari stuffed with Feta Cheese, Fennel, and Orange with Black Olives (7.5/10).

Arnisia Plevrakia : Grilled Lamb Riblets with Lemon and Oregano (7.5/10).

Arnisia Plevrakia: Grilled Lamb Riblets with Lemon and Oregano (7.5/10).

Octapodaki tou Yiorgou: Grilled Octopus with Lemon, Oregano, and Olive Oil (7.5/10).

Octapodaki tou Yiorgou: Grilled Octopus with Lemon, Oregano, and Olive Oil (7.5/10).

Moussaka: Traditional Casserole of Spiced Lamb, Eggplant, Potato, and Yogurt Béchamel (7/10).

Moussaka: Traditional Casserole of Spiced Lamb, Eggplant, Potato, and Yogurt Béchamel (7/10).

Meyer Lemon Pound Cake with Macerated Strawberries and Yogurt (6.5/10).

Meyer Lemon Pound Cake with Macerated Strawberries and Yogurt (6.5/10).

Dulce de Leche Ice Cream with Crispy Filo and Pine Nuts (8/10).

Dulce de Leche Ice Cream with Crispy Phyllo and Pine Nuts (8/10).

Loukoumades: Traditional Greek Doughnuts with Cinnamon and Honey (8/10).

Loukoumades: Traditional Greek Doughnuts with Cinnamon and Honey (8/10).

Galaktoboureko: Semolina Custard in Filo with Blood Orange Spoon and Pistachio Ice Cream (8/10).

Galaktoboureko: Semolina Custard in Phyllo with Blood Orange and Pistachio Ice Cream (8/10).

No wonder Kokkari Estiatorio has been extremely successful and popular for so many years! The food served here is simple but executed well with fresh ingredients and proper cooking techniques.

Highlights of the meal were the spanakotiropita, pita flatbread, grilled octopus, and the desserts. The spanakotiropita was prepared well with crispy light layers of phyllo dough stuffed with vibrant spinach, salty Feta cheese, and fresh dill. The pita flatbread was so flavorful with sweet caramelized onions, juicy tomatoes, and salty and briny Kalamata olives. After living in Italy for so long, octopus has easily become one of my favorite seafood items so whenever I see it on a menu I usually have to order it. The grilled octopus appetizer, tender pieces of octopus with a great char from the grill, was simply prepared but executed perfectly with its pairing of fruity olive oil and fresh lemon juice. Lastly, all the desserts were outstanding. Over the last few years, I’ve developed quite a sweet tooth thanks to my boyfriend. The dulce de leche ice cream was so yummy with a bed of crispy phyllo topped with pine nuts. The loukoumades, greek doughnuts, airy and light, were rolled in honey and cinnamon and sprinkled with powdered sugar and walnuts. Delicious! The galaktoboureko, phyllo pastries stuffed with creamy luscious semolina custard paired with tangy yet sweet blood orange and pistachio ice cream, were also fantastic.

Overall, my dining experience was wonderful so I would rate Kokkari Estiatorio at a 7.5-8/10. If you’re looking for simple yet satisfying Greek food then Kokkari Estiatorio is the restaurant for you!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s