Greek restaurant Ammoyiali on the island of Rhodes

On the island of Rhodes, my friend and chef Georgia Gerardis is seducing taste buds at her Greek restaurant. Greek food, which has always focused on simple and fresh, has never been food porn. Until now.

So let’s start with dessert, my favourite end of the meal. Baklava ice cream – vanilla ice cream with crisp flaky filo pastry, and coated in walnuts, pistachios and drizzled with  honey syrup – what’s not to love?

Baklava ice cream with filo pastry, nuts and honey syrup

At her restaurant Ammoyiali, Georgia creates art on a plate. It’s enough to make you hot and bothered in the most delectable way. Georgia calls her food Greek fusion.

Vegetable souvlaki with haloumi cheese, and caramelised balsamic

She draws upon regional influences, but she almost always shops for the freshest local produce – a Greek tradition unchanged over time.

Spaghetti a la mare with fresh mussels and garlic butter scented prawns

“My dishes are inspired by seasonal ingredients produced in our region but I always overdo it with one specific spice…Love! I get inspired by anything, a visit to the open market, a glance at a stall full of glossy green peppers or a basket of freshly picked tomatoes, a peek at a loaf of bread, my own cravings and mainly by the expressions on the faces of pleased customers,” Georgia says.

“I love Greek cuisine. I always put a twist to traditional dishes and find it fascinating making uninspiring ones, like a fava bean puree, via gourmet alchemy into a desirable dish. I get flooded by many ideas. Sometimes I wish to have many lives to create all the dishes I have in mind! One life is simply not enough!”

Salad greens with red cabbage, pecorino and proscuitto, drizzled with olive oil, basil and lime

Georgia’s husband Anthony is the other driving force in the kitchen. Her close friends run the front of the house. She says Greeks are updating their food tastes.

“No matter how surprisingly it might sound, Greeks do like experimenting with new dishes. The average Greek mother cooks wonderfully and homemade food is our eating habit. So when Greeks go out for dinner, they want to taste something new, something that will tickle their taste buds and become the discussion of the table.”

Georgia does her best to support local business.

“I have always been supporting the local market as long as they look good, smell good and taste good.

“Honey, herbs, vegetables and meat, everything is locally produced. We mostly work with seasonal fruits and veggies. We are very picky as far as quality is concerned, we do not want pesticides in our main ingredients.”

Ammoyiali also does event catering for weddings, christenings, birthdays and special holidays such as Christmas and Easter.

Desserts also include kataifi chocolate cake with custard cream and caramelized hazelnuts, and mastic-scented panna cotta with caramel and roasted almonds.  And the modern take (pictured above) of the semolina dessert halva, served with blackberry sauce and pistachios.

Georgia updates her dishes regularly and has set menus from 35 euros. As the Greeks say: Kali orexi!

CHECK LIST:

Ammoyiali is 2km from the centre of Rhodes Town on the foot of the Monte Smith hill near the Temple Of Apollo.

17 Voreiou Ipeirou Street.

Call for reservations: 224-1023-980, 224-102-3939.

The restaurant is open all year round. If you’re visiting Rhodes, Ammoyiali is a MUST place to dine.

The romantic interior of Ammoyiali

Comments

  1. says

    Georgia is an outstanding chef, who prepares her food not only professionally but more importantly from the heart. Her expertise is flawless and is to be recommended to all. A dining experience at her restaurant will be an unforgettable experience!!

    • Georgia Gerardis says

      Thank you so much for your lovely comment Linda. I do admit cooking is my passion. Cheers to you and beautiful Crete! :))

Trackbacks

  1. [...] I have a confession: when I bought an ice cream machine last summer it was for the sole purpose of making this ice cream – baklava ice cream. Inspiration comes from many: I first saw this concept at Jenn The Leftover Queen’s. There’s George Calombaris’ take on it and then there’s my friend David Tsirekas’ version from Perama. My friend Peter at Souvlaki for the Soul shared his ice cream sandwich and my other friend Georgia Gerardis wows diners at her restaurant Ammoyiali in Rhodes. [...]

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