This Gourmet Market Brings Mediterranean Flavors to Armonk

The Livanos sibs transform their childhood food memories into a market replete with Hellenic eats.

The Livanos family siblings Corina, Bill, and Nick grew up in Garden City, Long Island, a long way from the village of Molyvos on the Greek island of Lesbos where the trio spent their summers. It was the hometown of their father John Livanos, who came to the United States in 1957 to work as a dishwasher in his uncle’s restaurant; in 1960 he opened a luncheonette in Astoria. It was the start of what would eventually become the Livanos Restaurant Group, which includes Oceana and Molyvos in Manhattan, Moderne Barn in Armonk, and City Limits in White Plains.

Earlier this year, the family members expanded their culinary domain with the opening of Moderne Barn Mediterranean Gourmet Market a few doors down from Moderne Barn.

“We were raised on these imported Greek foods sold at the market,” says Corina, who spearheaded the opening of Moderne Barn in 2010. “We identify the products with our childhood summers in Greece.”

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She’s referring to herbal teas, olive oils, fava beans, honey, tahini, halvah, sardines, and Palirria-brand ready-to-eat meals, such as eggplant in onion and tomato sauce, baked gigantes beans, and hand-wrapped dolma. Cold cases hold filo dough, frozen veggies, giant wheels of kefalotyri, and pastitsio (via the same recipe served at Molyvos). Then there are the delicious jars of spoon sweets, often served to houseguests with tea or coffee, in nine flavors, including quince, cherry, walnut, and fig.

baked goods
Photo by John Bruno Turiano

“The catalyst for opening the market,” says Nick, who regularly goes to the food expo in Athens, “was to showcase what we love.”

The popularity of eating Greek is connected to the cuisine’s “simplicity and health values,” says Bill. “It’s not a high-fat diet. Olive oil is the main source of fat.”

He also notes that all the materials to build out the space except the flooring were imported from Greece. “We wanted it to feel like you are there,” he says.

The main counter display may contain the most tempting purchases: spinach pies; bougatsa, a custard pie typically eaten warm for breakfast; baklava made in-house following their mother Chrysa’s recipe (a dessert served at Moderne Barn); and pearly white hunks of feta.

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“If we didn’t open this kind of store,” says Nick, “who else would?”

Moderne Barn Mediterranean Gourmet Market
Armonk; 914.219.5444
Visit website

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