Some of our Greek restaurants are sexy, and some are simply mobbed. Then there’s Santorini Greek Restaurant, on a side street in a sleepier part of Sleepy Hollow. Look for a white building with a blue awning and busts of ancient Greeks in the window.
Your head swivels toward trays of homemade baklava, melomakarona (honey cookies), syrup-soaked cake, galaktoboureko (semolina custard in phyllo), and other goodies. With desserts like that staring you in the face, you’re mentally smashing plates before you get the menu.
Not that you really need a menu. Light hummus with olive oil is set before you, with seasoned pita, and a sign lists the fish specials, which come with soup or Greek salad and a side. The popular grilled branzini arrives nicely browned, sprinkled with breadcrumbs and garlic. Lamb youvetsi, traditional lamb shank with orzo in tomato sauce, is a tasty runner-up. Lentil soup is vegetable-rich, and Greek salad comes with great stuffed grape leaves (but beware of out-of-season tomatoes). Explore classics such as vegetable or meat moussaka and the gyro—which does rock, thanks to subtle spicing and fresh, dill-laden tzatziki.
Dessert is a must. Galaktoboureko—warm and silky, the love child of custard and bread pudding— is absolutely killer topped with cinnamon-dusted, syrupy phyllo. Keeping our slightly overzealous server at bay, I turn my Greek coffee upside down and let the sediment trickle into a picture in which, it is said, one can read one’s fortune.
Throughout Friday lunch, only one other table was taken. If there’s a long wait at Lefteris Gyro in Tarrytown, hustle over here instead—it’s basically up the street and a touch less casual. (PS: There’s a coupon on Santorini’s homepage. You’ll thank me later.)
175 Valley St, Sleepy Hollow (914) 631-4300; www.santorinigreekrestaurant.com