There are many reasons why Greek food is just so good, such as a focus on simple yet powerful flavours, having an emphasis on baking instead of frying, and using fresh, healthy and light ingredients. As Greek cuisine has long been incredibly popular throughout the world, particularly in Sydney, you don’t have to search very hard to find a Greek taverna (restaurant).
Greece has given us a variety of mouthwatering and traditional foods including kolokythokeftedes (zucchini and feta balls), tapenade, gyros, tzatziki, souvlaki, dolmades, juicy Mediterranean olives, and the most famous Greek dish: moussaka! And apart from being rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and flavour, Greek food is also one of the healthiest cuisines in the world.
If you’re now craving a lamb gyros with a side of dolmades, and who wouldn’t blame you, then here is where to find Sydney’s best Greek restaurants and their top dishes you absolutely have to try!
The Apollo Restaurant has earned itself a strong reputation for being the go-to taverna for some of the best modern and contemporary Greek cuisine in Sydney. Headed by Sam Christie, co-founder of Cho Cho San, and chef Jonathan Barthelmess, former chef of Manly Pavilion, Apollo Restaurant creates an immersive dining environment surrounded by warm, dim lighting.
Some of their most popular Greek dishes include their saganaki with oregano topped with honey, their fall-off-the-bone oven-baked lamb shoulder with lemon and Greek yogurt, and their velvety smooth taramasalata dip made from the most divine mullet roe, which is absolutely delicious with a slice of their warm, house-made pita bread!
But you can’t leave The Apollo without trying their filo pastry cigars, which are filled with a mixture of olive oil, honey and finely chopped walnuts and served with a dollop of coffee cream. The Apollo Restaurant is also available for takeaway and delivery, so there’s no excuse not to miss out on some of the best Greek food Sydney has to offer!
As one of the top-ranking Greek restaurants in Sydney, Alpha Restaurant definitely deserves a place on our list. With a stunning interior featuring classic Greek colours and stone walls resembling the inside of an ancient Greek ruin, Alpha Restaurant offers a memorable dining experience from the moment you enter.
Their executive chef Peter Conistis has created a unique menu that showcases some of the best Grecian cuisines in Sydney such as moussaka with beef brisket, eggplant and creamy ricotta, taramosalata made from white cod roe with slices of bottarga, and saganaki with kritharaki, octopus, king prawns an1d calamari.
If you’re a fan of doughnuts, then you can’t leave Alpha Restaurant without trying their delicious loukoumades that are coated in honey, cinnamon and topped with fig ice cream! Their menu also includes a fabulous wine list offering rosé, red and white wine from Greece, Italy, France, South Australia and more.
It’s easy to almost miss STEKI Taverna if you walk too far past its bright blue walls outside O’Connell street, but once you’re inside, you’ll never forget it. This small yet quaint Greek taverna in Sydney is home to one of the most lively Greek dining experiences you will ever have.
STEKI, meaning ‘meeting place’ in Greek, has had a casual and laid back atmosphere since it first opened back in 1983, providing diners with live music, and of course, some of the best traditional Greek cuisine. Standouts on their menu include octopus xidato marinated in vinegar olive oil, capsicum and tomatoes stuffed with sultanas, rice and pine nuts, and keftedes meatballs cooked in a rich tomato sauce.
Their drink menu includes Greek and Australian beers, liqueurs, spirits, and of course, authentic Greek plomari ouzo. For a fun dining atmosphere filled with dancing, live music and incredibly delicious Greek food, then you have to visit STEKI Taverna!
Owned by Andrew Jordanou and former Quay chef Darryl Martin, Barzaari is a shining example of just how exceptional modern Mediterranean and Cypriot cuisine can be. With a charming, rustic interior and a unique selection of artwork adorning the surrounding walls, Barzaari creates a warm and inviting atmosphere for diners.
If their interior décor is what lures you in, then their exquisite menu is what makes you stay. For a delicious BBQ feast, you have to try their lamb, chicken or pork souvla, featuring thick and juicy chunks of meat that have been slowly roasted over a charcoal barbeque. For seafood fans, Barzaari offers barbequed octopus with raisins, kritharaki and pine nuts, and succulent barbequed swordfish with chickpeas, skordalia and capers.
As Greek food also has a huge emphasis on sharing, why not invite a few friends along and try Barzaari’s ‘Whole Bazaar’ platter? This mammoth platter features pickled octopus, cauliflower with molasses, dukkah and tahini, souvlakia, falafels, halloumi, tsakistes, sheftalies, Greek salad and much more!
Tucked away along Darling Street is where you’ll find Sofie’s Greek Restaurant, a tiny yet very lively taverna run by a Greek husband and wife duo. Even though it may be a small restaurant, it offers a cozy and intimate atmosphere with style and friendly Greek hospitality – and Greek Tsifteteli belly dancers!
The menu at Sofie’s features mouthwatering traditional Greek food such as beef or vegetarian moussaka with rich layers of creamy béchamel sauce, kefalotiri cheese, eggplant and potato. You also have their pastitsio (a Greek version of lasagna) with layers of penne pasta in between béchamel sauce, ground beef, cheese and spiced salsa.
With a focus on using fresh and seasonal ingredients for cooking authentic Greek food from the heart, Sofie’s Greek Restaurant is a charming taverna that is perfect for family occasions, group outings with friends, or a date night with loved ones.
Run by a father and son team with the belief of demonstrating the quality of ‘philotimo’ (meaning “love and honour”), Gyros Fix is a family business that specialises in simple, traditional and moreish Greek food. Following in the footsteps of their relatives from the Greek town of Nafpaktos, Gyros Fix features traditional recipes that have been handed down throughout their family.
Their menu features classic dishes such as vegetarian and meat varieties of the best skepasti (one of Greece’s best kept secrets) you will ever try, and of course, lamb, chicken or pork gyros with onion, tomato, chips and tzatziki wrapped in warm, fresh pita bread. You can also grab a side of fresh Greek salad, and if you’re craving something sweet at the end of your meal, their traditional rizogalo rice puddings and seriously next level!
If you’re visiting with a group of friends, then their 4-person platter is an ideal choice, featuring a smörgåsbord of freshly made pita bread, hot chips, tomato, onions, tzatziki dip and chunks of tender pork, chicken and lamb. Gyros Fix is the perfect example that fresh and flavoursome Greek food doesn’t have to be complex in order to taste absolutely amazing.
The Medusa Greek Taverna is owned by restaurateur Peter Koutsopoulos and is definitely worth visiting for some of the best Greek food! Having more than 40 years of experience in the restaurant industry, Koutsopoulos pulls out all the stops in providing a true, authentic Greek dining experience.
Mastering the art of cooking traditional Greek food with a modern twist, their renowned head chef Gregori Akridas has created a delicious and authentic Greek menu. Their menu offers dishes such as chicken souvlaki with pita bread and fresh tomato, onion and parsley salad, tender roast lamb shoulder, lemon potatoes and jus lié, and pan-roasted Tasmanian salmon with fennel and mint pomegranate salad.
If you are visiting the Medusa Greek Taverna with a group, then you have to try their mezza sharing plate which has a selection of country-style sausages, taramasalata, lima beans, halloumi, pita bread and tzatziki! If you have a sweet tooth, then you also have to try their coconut ravani (a traditional Greek cake) drizzled with lime syrup, macerated berries and a generous dollop of crème Chantilly.
At its core, Greek food is so good because it stands out for its use of simple, fresh and vibrant flavours, creating some of the most beloved traditional dishes that can be found all across Australia, from menus in commercial kitchens to dinner tables in family households.
If this list has left you with a serious craving for gyros, moussaka, souvlaki or a slice of saganaki, then plan a visit to one of these incredible tavernas to experience the best Greek restaurants Sydney has to offer!