Key: hit up a fish taverna!
Paros may not be known as the foodie island (check out Naxos, if you’re really dying for some up-and-coming local cuisine.) But, there are still a handful of Parian dishes that you need to try. Before we get to the list, make sure you know a few tips & tricks.
Hotel vs. Restos?
Although dining at your hotel has the convenience of not moving too far, but why would you want to miss out on some local grubs? Especially when many restaurants in Paros are owned by locals who know what they’re doing. Many are even putting modern spins on traditional recipes.
Which neighborhoods to hit up?
Parikia (kinda sounds like Paprika, LOL!) Naoussa have tons of restaurants in alleys, along the harbor.
What exactly is a taverna?
In Greece, Tavernas are Greek restaurants that serve only what they have of the day. AND it has music and dancing as entertainment. So all in all, it’s WAY more than just a tavern. When you find yourself in one, here are X Greek foods you shouldn’t miss when visiting Paros!
Shall we say, SEAFOOD, SEAFOOD, SEAFOOD! Especially grilled octopus is all the hype, and the buzz worthy reputation is well-deserved. Tender, chewy to the perfect degree, freshly prepared, grilled octopus is a must-eat. Don’t be shy with squeezing that lemon and drizzling that olive oil.
2. Roasted mackerel = Gouna
While we’re on the topic of seafood, don’t miss gouna which is roasted mackerel. The fish is open in the sun with herbs, and grilled. Check into a small fish taverna and put in your order of gouna, you’ll go straight into fish food heaven, but in the best way possible.
3. Baked chickpeas = Revithia sto fourno
Typically baked in clay pots, accompanied by rosemary and onions. Baked chickpeas spread on top of toasted bread, make a healthy and yummy snack!
4. Snails = Karavalas
The word is used by locals to describe large snails, but Karavalas is sort of like the Greek version of the French escargot. Comes with a delicious garlic sauce if you don’t mind the rubbery texture.
5. Fried cheese = Saganaki
With honey on top, this pan-fried cheese plate makes an appearance on most restaurant menus and makes every cheese lover REAL happy.
6. White cheese = Mizithra
Made from goat milk, it resembles the Italian ricotta and can taste a bit salty. Sometimes, this soft, snow-white, creamy, and moist cheese can also taste sweet and milky. In Paros, Mizithra is used in salads rather than feta cheese. It can also accompany pasta or meat dishes.
7. Fish soup = Kakavia
In French cuisine, there’s the bouillabaisse. In Greek food, there’s kakavia, which is a fish soup with vegetables. Traditionally made with saffron, olive oil, and onions. The kind of fish used can be: cod, goliath grouper, or snapper.
8. Pumpkin pie = Petimezi
It might remind you of Thanksgiving or Halloween, but this local pumpkin pie is a Paros delicacy. So gotta try it!
9. Local raki = Souma
Such a great pairing to fresh fish, souma is local raki of single distillation of grapes. The distillers typically open in autumn to make souma for family and friends. Make sure to bring home a bottle, it makes a great souvenir!
10. Paros wine.
It’s quite aromatic, and try the Manolis Moraitis local wine brand. The winery of the Moraitis family is located on the beach in Naoussa, and they cultivate rare indigenous varieties specially on the Paros island.