Present day collides with childhood memories in a culinary explosion!
Greek food is fun! There I said it. And, it is. It’s food that a lot of times is celebrated with music, dancing and lots of laughing. It’s just fun, trust me.
I’ve got a soft spot when it comes to Greek cuisine. I grew up in Chicago and have brilliant memories of going to Greektown (The Parthenon in particular) with my parents. Being wide eyed and amazed at the white shirted waiters, their arms lined with smoking hot plates of Saganaki ready to ignite at any moment. The occasion always accompanied by a mighty, OPA!! The flames lapping at the waiters neck soon to be extinguished by an ever present lemon half. Yes, the sounds, the smells and of course the flavors!
When you’re young there is something uniquely exciting about the Saganaki ritual. The moment your server arrives at your table carrying that smoking platter, everyone stops what they’re doing to watch. The seemingly imminent danger of flames from the cheese reaching almost to the low hanging ceiling. Would this be the night that the whole place burns down?? (As an adult I wonder, “how do these places get insurance”). Thankfully, a kid NEVER thinks like that! Then, in an instant the fire is out. Expertly doused by the juice of exactly one half of a lemon. Even the largest Saganaki infernos have never taken two. Amazing…
OK, I’m back. What a fantastic walk down memory lane. Glad you could join me. But, we’re in the here and now of Savor Sarasota Restaurant Week let’s not forget that. We have a job to do!
Apollonia Grill. They swung open their doors in 2013. I wonder if an OPA! accompanied that? They’ve been packing them in at their University Town Center (Not UTC. But, located directly across University Parkway) restaurant ever since. I thought since we haven’t featured a place from the University Parkway Corridor that we should do it right now.
Without any further delay let’s take a look at what the Apollonia Grill is showcasing for Savor Sarasota.
Lunch First Course (Choice of one)
Soup of the Day
Tomato Salad “Horiatiki”
Watermelon & Feta Salad
Lunch Second Course (Choice of one)
Spinach Artichoke Chicken
Grilled Chicken Breast, goat cheese, topped with sautéed artichokes, tomatoes and spinach in white wine lemon sauce with rice pilaf.
Rotisserie spiced lamb, thinly sliced, served with roasted potatoes, vegetables, Tzadziki and pita.
Salmon Kale Orzo Salad
Grilled salmon filet, fresh kale, orzo, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, onions and feta in lemon dill vinaigrette.
Lunch Third Course (Choice of one)
Rice Pudding & Roasted Pear
Dinner First Course (Choice of one)
Tomato Cucumber Salad “Horiatiki”
Watermelon & Feta Salad
Soup of the Day
Dinner Second Course (Choice of one)
Rack of Lamb
Pistachio & herb crusted, vegetable couscous, roasted Campari tomatoes.
Spiced char grilled filet medallions, roasted potatoes, Greek yogurt, lemon oregano dressing.
Grape Leaves Salmon
Salmon filet wrapped with vine leaves leek-mushroom orzo and lemon herb vinaigrette.
Dinner Third Course (Choice of one)
With pistachio gelato
Rice Pudding with Roasted Pear
Looking over my selections I get the sense that choosing is going to be tough. I’ve been here before and know just how delicious some of these dishes are. But, I must be brave. A choice must be made. Here we go!
Lunch, I’ve got to have the Horiatiki Salad. This is one of my favorite salads of any cuisine style. Can’t pass on that. Second course, Gyro Platter. Dessert, I’ll have to pass it’s lunch and I just had a Gyro Platter, remember… Dinner, Saganaki (of course), followed by the Rack of Lamb and the Galactobureko to finish off an incredible meal.
Here’s an idea. If they have an ice cold Mythos Beer you should get one. It would go great with the flaming cheese!
We’ve only got a few days left of Savor Sarasota. I would strongly suggest you get it in gear and cross Apollonia off of your checklist. You can thank me later.
APOLLONIA MEDITERRANEAN GRILL
8235 Cooper Creek Boulevard
University Park, FL 34201