Introducing: Estiatorio Volos, a Financial District Greek restaurant reborn
The Danforth is home to the lion’s share of Greek restaurants in the city, and for years, Mediterra felt like the strip’s outpost in the financial core. Now owner Andreas Antoniou is relaunching the family business as Estiatorio Volos, which serves a more upscale take on the cuisine suited to nearby Bay Streeters.
The uniform black marble exterior belies the breezy interior flooded with daylight streaming in from the large windows. Two small tables are planted within a few feet of the lofty entrance, ideal for people-watching, and the bar, unusually, is perched at just the right height for a diner to sit and eat comfortably. The ubiquitous marine elements lend a cozy note to the formal ambiance.
To ensure the flavours remained authentic, Greek food expert Diane Kochilas consulted on the menu. Diners will recognize the horiatiki salad ($13), perhaps not by name but for its classic combination of tomatoes, cucumbers, olives and feta, which is laced with chef Reza Parsia’s top-notch Cretan organic olive oil. Lamb and fish dominate the mains, with dishes like Aegean-style grilled halibut ($29) and exohiko, phyllo pastry stuffed with lamb and fresh vegetables ($22) (a glossary wouldn’t be entirely out of line). Desserts include an ouzo-infused dark chocolate mousse and Metaxa-marinated figs with vanilla ice cream (each $9). A growing list of Greek wines rounds out the selection of Old World classics (see David Lawrason’s recent column on Greek wines).
Antoniou, who left Los Angeles to take over the family business in Toronto, tells us the space is meant to promote philoxenia, the ancient Greek tradition of welcoming of strangers into your home. With any luck, that same tradition will lure diners out of the nearby towers.
Volos Estiatorio, 133 Richmond St. W., 416-861-1211, volos.ca.