My mother moved from Greece with my grandparents and uncle at the age of nine. Like every family who immigrated to Australia they too brought with them different culture and cuisine.
Growing up in outback Australia I definitely wasn’t immersed in my mother’s heritage. Family holidays to Melbourne at Easter time to visit my yaiyai and papou had its pros and cons. My papou waking up at 5am every morning and playing Greek music on the loudest dial was a strain. Him putting a whole leg of lamb on a spit and slow cooking it all morning for us to eat at lunch was a pleasure.
Since moving to Sydney 10 years ago I haven’t really experienced many Greek restaurants. At least, none that left an impression. It was with no expectations that I checked out The Apollo in Potts Point last Monday. Head Chef Jonathan Barthelmess is ex- Manly Pavillion and Coast Restaurant so he has the credentials to pull off a good menu but what would be his take on Greek cuisine?
The large restaurant on Macleay St has a warm and inviting fit out and is bustling on the Monday night myself and a chef friend dine. We’re sat at the bar with other bookings of ones and twos. I immediately regret not coming with a larger group to take advantage of the set menu. Small dishes are designed to be shared and having both scoped out the menu before arriving our foodie minds agree on the Greek salad, octopus, sardines and of course, the lamb.
The delivery of our food is staggered and gives us an opportunity to try each dish as it comes. I enjoy everything and can’t wait to go back. There are a lot of authentic concepts and flavours served with a modern twist. The fresh ingredients and simple flavours I knew growing up were all there with ‘prettier’ presentation.
There’s a decent wine list of local and international wines and cocktails to start or finish your meal. I’ve already rallied a group of mates for my next visit. If you have more than 6 people you can book a table in advance. Judging by how busy this Monday night was, I suggest you do the same.
The Apollo Restaurant
44 Macleay Street, Potts Point
02 8354 0888
Open 7 nights a week from 6pm. Open 12-1.30pm Fri, Sat, Sun.
Reservations taken for lunch. Dinner reservations for 6-12ppl