Greek drinks, like their food, are an integral part of their culture. Be it a party city like Thessaloniki, or a calm village in Pelion, the love for Greek food and drinks cannot be missed. At every nook and corner, you will find people chatting for hours while sipping away mugs of coffee. After a splendid time exploring the #OffbeatGreece, I think I am ready to scribble down my favorites.
My favorite Greek drinks:
First of all, let me admit that Greek coffee is heavily inspired by Italian coffee. Texture, smoothness and density are quite similar. Being a big sucker for Italian coffee (literally) and food, Greek coffee was a heavenly treat for me. That aroma and creaminess will stay with me for a while. Just a warning, if you are not a fan of coffee (for some reasons I would never understand :D), try it slow. It is quite strong. If you don’t like coffee in general, there is a high probability that you will not fall in love with this one either.
Interesting read: Lago Maggiore: incidentally finding the Italian heaven
It is quite similar to frappe we are familiar with. It can be ordered both hot or cold. You can have several combinations with/without milk and sugar. My personal favorite is cold Freddo cappuccino with milk and without sugar. Strong stuff though.
It is a refreshing liquor that you generally drink at after-work meet-ups and dinner. It looks like water but flavors are similar to Raki, the Turkish drink. You can have it both with or without ice/water. My suggestion is to take it with ice. And take it slow. It is fiery! 😀
Tsipouro is another strong Greek liquor. It also offered in different variations. With/without figs. I preferred the one with figs. I found it pretty similar to Ouzo, to be honest (Don’t tell it your greek friends!). Volos , which is a perfect spot to stay when exploring Pelion and its villages, is famous for its variety of Tsipouro meze (especially for the sea food options)
I did not know anything about Greek beers before going there. Never heard of them before. I liked their beers actually. Most places offer Alpha and/or Mythos and some local beers. Go for it! Coming from someone who is spoilt with German beer gives it a high credibility, right? 😀
- Don’t try these Greek drinks at touristic places. Just walk around and you will find nice local places. This is very easy in Greece.
- Try the local beers: That goes without saying (and for every place you visit). I fell in love with the local wheat beer.
- Ouzo and Tsipouro meze: Meze is a random platter of side dishes that accompanies your drinks. Greeks are the best at meze. Seriously, we ordered two drinks once and were served with four different side dishes along with it. This is crazy! If you are ever in Greece, order the drinks with meze. You pay about 2 euros extra for the drink but get a lot more in return. Quote me on that! I remember that Tsipouro was around 2 euros and Tsipouro meze was 4 euros. So, you get two side dishes for 2 euros. You can get anything from Octopus to potato salad (You can always tell your preference and dietary requirements).
- Slurp the black forest milkshake (in the picture above) at Harry’s Spot in Thessaloniki. We stumbled upon this beautiful place just walking around the city. This place is interesting because they have many board and card games you can borrow and play with your friends and travel buddies. Fun, no? Try their Black forest milkshake. You won’t stop slurping! 🙂
Greek hospitality is amazing! Coming from west Europe, this was a striking difference. The way people interact with you and offer you Greek drinks and food is nice and humble. The passion for creating and maintaining a beautiful place is evident with the different theme of each restaurant and cafe. I became an instant fan.
If you are wondering why I am promoting #OffbeatGreece, I explained the Whys and Hows here.
This article is a part of the 31 days series #OffbeatGreece I started in October 2016. You can find more articles from this series here.
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