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The Real Greek (London)

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8 Reviews

Hoxton Market, London, N1 6HG. Tel: 020 7739 8212

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    8 Reviews
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      29.08.2013 18:47
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      Thoroughly reccomended, even for picky eaters

      I ate here with my son yesterday. he is 6 and has Asperger's, so trying new restaurants is a huge struggle for him.

      We studied the menu before hand, and decided that there were things he would enjoy. We also noted that the company is run by a greek person, and hoped it would be authentic.

      The menu is very clear, there are some pre selected options that may work well for people looking for an introduction to the cuisine, priced as a complete combination, which would have been an excellent option, and helps keep track of costs, which can spiral if you are choosing a few small meze dishes to share, and the children's menu is accessible. However, I would not use the children's menu in future, as I think it is more adventurous and useful to just include a child in the selections from the main menu and enjoy the fun of sharing everything together, many of the children's menu items are found on the main menu too, so, if there are favourites, they can still be bought.

      The food was delicious, the meat was nicely cooked, and the flavours clean and fresh. The flat breads were lovely, fresh and warm. The crudités provided safe vegetable choices for my son, and I enjoyed the tzaziki. The meze style allowed us to safely try some new things (including my son, who rarely tries anything new) without jeopardising the whole meal, and the whole experience was enjoyable for everyone.

      The staff were lovely and very patient with my son, who loved it so much that he went and thanked the chef personally for the yummy food.

      The dessert choices are varied and lovely, the ice cream is great, although I found the quantity of cream on the Greek Sundae to be too much for my taste, but I am looking forward to trying their yoghurt combination next time.

      My son hasn't stopped talking about his dinner here yet, and, I am happy to have found a restaurant that caters for him, and serves lovely grown up food too, so I don't feel I am missing out by finding him somewhere he can cope with.

      A really positive experience. And at £50 for three people, including desserts and alcohol, excellent value for money.

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      23.07.2013 18:32
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      If you like Greek food it's well worth a visit!

      My friends and I were looking for a nice place to have lunch when one suggested The Real Greek, and loving Greek food I thought it sounded perfect. I don't eat meat (but I do eat fish) and one of my friends is a vegan, so we have to be quite careful in where we choose to eat.

      The good: Firstly, the menu is set out really well, with symbols for the vegetarian, vegan, and coeliac friendly dishes. There was a surprising amount of vegan food to my friend's excitement, and plenty for me to choose from. They also have a summer menu at the moment, where you get a special deal for £10.

      The food was delicious. We decided to each pick two 'meze' dishes each, and then share everything between us. The menu recommends 3-4 per person, but what we got was more than enough. Especially delicious was the Greek style flatbread and halloumi and vegetable skewer. The food came quickly and I really cannot fault it.

      The price was very reasonable too. The restaurant offers students a 25% discount! A student discount is normally 10% so we were very pleased. All in all we each paid £7.50, which was definitely worth it.

      The bad: It doesn't bother me because we weren't really in a rush, but the service was quite slow when we were trying to pay. The restaurant was very busy, so it took quite a while to get round to us. But the waitresses were very nice so like I said, it wasn't an issue. Another thing was that the restaurant is quite small and cramped. There is a downstairs, but this wasn't open, perhaps because it was lunchtime. We were sitting at a table that was basically joined on to another one, and overall there was a definite lack of spaciousness. Having said that, the decor of the restaurant was really nice and the experience was comfortable.

      All in all I was very impressed by this restaurant. I would definitely go back to sample more of the delicious food!

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        24.03.2010 23:23

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        The Real Greek , BanksideMy partner and I went for a meal here this evening. Staff were pleasant and the ambience was also very nice. Ordered a range of cold and hod starters as well as some souvlaki. We waited 45 minutes for the cold starters and a further 15 minutes for the hot starters. The hot prawn starter was very cold and was sent back. As was the fried squid. The Souvlaki was warn enough but by this time we were very disappointed, not to mention hungry. Service was poor and all we were told was that the kitchen was slow today! How long does it take to lace some humous on a plate and warm up some flat bread? Very disappointing and not somewhere we'll be eating again. There are many other better served restaurants to visit!

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        10.09.2009 23:49
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        The Real Greek is a restaurant chain that I really want to visit again and again

        I would like to point out before any comments are written or low rating given strictly on the basis of the fact that this review is about a different restaurant location that after 3 weeks or so of trying it has not been added as a seperate location, so aplogies to those that want to give accurate reviews on the specific location - whether this is because of the size of the database I don't know, but this review is for The Real Greek at Marylebone!


        In early August my partner (Sue) and I visited London for a hectic bit of sight seeing without our kids, that despite being given the opportunity preferred to stay with other family members.

        We needed to keep costs down so apart from travel (to/from London) hotel costs, general food, the loos and the London Underground evrything else was discounted or fully paid for using the substantial amount of Tesco Clubcard Vouchers that we had built up.

        A lot of what we did during our trip was planned weeks in advance and we were surprised to find that there were some restaurants listed as accepting the vouchers.

        We wanted to have at least one proper meal while we were in London, and decided to try something different. Neither of us had ever tasted Greek food before and it would be a new experience for us to share. The Real Greek just stood out amongst the restaurant section, and in the end it wasn't what type of food we wanted to try, just the location.

        The Real Greek is a small chain of 6 bistro type small restaurants at Hoxton, Clerkenwell, Bankside, Putney, Marylebone and Covent Garden.

        We chose the Marylebone location in Paddington Street as it was only a few stops from our hotel on the underground, and literally a short walk from Madame Tussauds where we had been only a few hours earlier, so gave us a chance to either go back to the hotel and freshen up or go straight to it if we were limited on time.

        We were getting a little worried walking along Paddington Street and we were thinking about being late for our pre-booked table, which had been booked by e-mail using their internet link. Glauce, who had been my e-mail contact had always had a friendly tone to his e-mail correspondence and I felt it only right that I should e-mail our findings and let them know that I would make this available through this site. It was good to hear that we "had made his day" when I confirmed it to him.

        It was 8pm on a Tuesday evening, not the busiest day of the week, but there were still a number of tables in operation and we were greeted politely and shown to our reserved table by the young waiter.

        We had looked at the menu on-line before visiting, but found it a little hard going other than it contained a number of cold and hot dishes called souvlaki, and despite the waiter trying to be helpful Sue felt embarrassed by the inability to choose items on the menu and was prepared to walk out.

        Luckily we didn't, and we decided that as we had no idea what was on the menu we decided to try one of the set meals - set to an extent but each line of the menu has 2 options so there was quite a range to choose from. We decided to opt for the Athenian menu. Our particular meal consisted of flat bread, taramaslata, dolmades, grilled kalamari, salt cod, greek salad and new potatoes which was £25.95.

        The waiter stated that the idea was for sharing and that it was like a tapas bar, well he could have been talking Greek to me because we'd never been to one of those either, so it was an experience to see a rack appearing filled with small plates.

        We ordered a coke and diet coke and this too was an experience as they arrived in glass bottles and yes there is a distinctive difference between drinking it from a glass.

        Well, the food was to die for, the taramasalata had a tang to it that is sadly lacking from the versions available in supermarkets, there were similar looking triangles to samosas but filled with feta and herbs which was so morish. The salt cod strips were fresh, juicy and the batter was delicious. As for the Kalamari, well I've never had squid so even that was a new experience.

        As an idea of just how much we loved the food Sue made several Greek style salads on our return and we bought quite a bit of virgin olive oil and feta cheese (but not the olives!).

        We felt rather full by the end of the meal, but we both decided to try the desserts so I chose strawberry ice cream and Sue the Greek Lemon Cake served with Greek Yoghurt. Well, we thought we'd enjoyed everything up until that point, but we didn't enjoy the desserts, we absolutely loved them! The strawberry ice cream was fresh, fruity and filled with strawberry pieces. The lemon cake again was fresh and the yoghurt fresh with a tarte taste.

        We completed our meal with a cappucino each, which was exactly as we'd expect them to taste.

        In terms of the bill, this came to approximately £42, of this £30 was covered by the Tesco Clubcard Vouchers - which excluded all drinks.

        Our only critisism, and it is only a small one, is that we were left way too long after we'd finished the meal before the waiter gave us the bill - which seems to be a common theme amongst a lot of restaurants these days.

        In summary, if we were to visit London again in the near future I would have no hesitation in going back to this restaurant. I cannot comment on the other ones in the chain, but we adored it.

        I have no hesitation in giving 5* for The Real Greek, in fact if 6 could be awarded I would give them that instead. We can't comment on the authenticity, but it was new to us and made us want to try more. I hope like us you get the chance to try it.

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          03.05.2009 23:45
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          chain greek by the banks of the Thames

          It was my birthday recently and I had the fun task of selecting a restaurant to hold my celebrations at. It had to be central London as my friends are spread out of over the metropolis, it had to be wheelchair friendly and it had to be fairly vegetarian friendly, as I'm a fish eater an a lot of my friends are Kosher keeping Jews so a steak house was certainly out of the question. I had pizza last year so pizza and Italian were off the menu so in the end I plumped for somewhere I had eaten at a few times before and liked it. The restaurant in question for my birthday meal was the Real Greek at Bankside by the river Thames.
          The real Greek is a mini chain of surprise surprise Greek restaurants founded by chef Theodore Kyriakou in 1999. There are seven branches of the restaurant in total (the others being in Hoxton, Covent Garden, Clerkenwell, Spittalfields, Putney and Marylebone) but I have only been to the one in Bankside. I think its a superb location as its right on the riverside and only a stone throw away from London landmarks such as the Millennium Bridge, the Globe Theatre, the Tate Modern and Saint Paul's Cathedral. Its easy to get to by public transport, as it is within walking distance of Blackfriars, Cannon Street and London Bridge railway stations. If you were arriving by tube its easy enough to get to from London Bridge (Northern and Jubilee), Southwark (Jubilee), Mansion House (District and circle) and saint Paul's (Central Line).

          My table was booked for 12 people on a Saturday evening in early April. There are facilities to book on line but I telephoned my booking through , as I had to make sure they could accommodate a guest in a wheelchair. I found the staff to be very helpful and booking was very easy.
          The Real Greek is housed in a modern building next to he ubiquitous Pizza Express. At the moment there are roadworks on the pavement outside, which does not make a good first impression but I suppose they are a necessary evil. There's an outside searing/smoking area at the front . This would be lovely in the summer , as I can think of nothing better than some mezze, a glass of wine or ouzo whilst watching boats go by on the river.

          Once inside I was seated at the bar whilst I waited for my guests to arrive. Being a Saturday night it was busy and I heard there was about a quarter of an hour wait or so for tables if they were not booked. Whilst at the bar I ordered a bottle of coca cola and scanned my surroundings. The restaurant consists of an area with tall stools for smaller parties and some booths and larger lower tables at both ends for bigger parties. Ours was right at the end of the restaurant in a corner so it felt nice and private. However the downside of this was we often felt a little forgotten about, as the waiittng staff did not pass us as frequently as those in more central tables.
          The menu is split into nibbles, mezze, Souvki, side dishes, salads and desserts. The first time I ate at the Real Greek at Bankside was two years ago and it advertised itself as a souvaki bar, as that's their specialty. Souvaki are proper grilled Greek kebabs. However with all but one of them (the seasonal vegetables) consisting of meat they have been off the menu for me. They cost around about the £6 mark which is not too bad value for money.

          The reason for us coming to the Real Greek was for the mezze. For the uninitiated mezze is the Greek, and Middle Eastern version of Spanish tapas. It consists of little dishes from dips, to meat, salads and sea food. You normally choose three dishes so its like having a mix of starers rather than one main dish. I like it because you usually share most things with the whole of your party and you get a little taste of everything. I like this idea and find it most civilised and fun. There are various preselected sharers ranging in price from £18.50 for the vegetarian one to £25.00 for the meat one. We never go for these, as there is usually one thing we do not like and it is more fun choosing our our selection.
          Scanning the menu I was really disappointed to see the cheese balls were no longer available. These were balls of hot melted feta in a lovely crispy coating and were a favourite of me and my friends that had eaten there before. They really were delicious. However there were still loads of tasty sounding treats to choose from. I selected some dolmades (stuffed vine leaves), a dish with melted feta in a tomato and onion and sauce and for my birthday treat some big fat juicy tiger prawns. Other ordered hummos, taramsolatta (not a favourite of mire), Greek salad and Tiropitika (little pastry triangles stuffed with cheese and leeks) alongside lots of flat bread and cubes of salty feta cheese. Each little dish costs around about £3.75 for a dip or cold mezze ranging up to £6 for the seafood and meat.

          I love the way the Real Greek serve their mezze, as they come stacked on containers almost like a cake stand with a handle. They are easy to carry and don't take up much room on the table. One thing I would like is for the dishes to be labeled, as some of the dips looked very similar. The one thing I noticed was that the plates were not big. Some of them were no bigger than a saucers. With things like the Dolmades and Tiropitika you only got about three of them on a plate. Thus they had to be cut in half if they were popular. I did like the Tiropitika as they were crispy outside and gooey in the middle but only had a mouthful of one. The prawns were highlight as I got four big plump juicy prawns. I was not so impressed with the Feta Bourgidii, as I could barely taste the feta as the tomato and onion overpowered it. Our cold mezze came first and we had a bit of a wait for hot ones to come. This was not too bad as it was a relaxed party but I think if I was in a rush I would be a bit annoyed. My mezze was washed down by a glass of Greek white wine at £4 a glass. I remember when I first visited the restaurant the drinks menu seemed to be more expansive and there were cocktail that seem to have disappointed. I found the small portion sizes particularly deceptive as I was nicely full without being stuffed and ready for a dessert.
          The dessert menu consists of mostly Greek style desserts such as baklava and Greek youghurt with a few old favourites thrown in for good measures such as chocolate mousse cake (expensive at (£5.95). For those who can not decide and want a mezze approach to their dessert their is a sharer at £11.95. The Real Greek have also developed a guilt free dessert and its not fruit salad. Instead they donate your dessert money to charity. I did not fancy anything too rich or sickly so plumped for a palate cleansing passion fruit sorbet (£3.00). This was sharp an refreshing bit I think passion fruit is too strong a flavour to have on its own. It would have been very nice mixed in with the raspberry sorbet some of the others had. One of my friends had a quibble with her mint tea as it was just mint and hot water unlike the Moroccan style mint tea she is used to drinking.

          When it came to the bill we had a bit of a wait, as again we seemed to be forgotten about a other customers were tended to first.
          The Real Greek is a nice place to dine especially in the summer but it does have stiff competition and can not afford to be complacent. They do have an offer on the website for 50% off the food bill durirng off peak times and on Mondays all Mezze are £2.00. I would certainly go then but I am not so sure about going back on a busy Saturday night again, as there are so many dining options in London to choose from The food is good but the portions are small, the service can be a bit slow and if they want to regain my custom bring back the cheese balls.
          Riverside House,
          2a Southwark Bridge Road,
          Bankside,
          London,
          SE1 9HA

          0871 971 3527

          http://www.therealgreek.com

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            09.12.2008 09:52
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            good located restaurant, friendly service, good food

            THE REAL GREEK - COVENT GARDEN
            61-62 Long Acre, London WC2E 9JE

            We went here for a meal while on a weekend break in london. We were really surprised with the quaint layout as its a small venue in an old pub on a corner. The seating is quite high but was comfortable once i had got up there! This seating arrangement gives it a really intimate setting and because the numers are limited it doesnt get rowdy or anything like that.
            The staff were friendly and our waiter very helpful and knowledgable. My husband has Coeliacs so cannot eat gluten and they were great advising suitability of dishes.
            The food came on sort of high rack plate design, like a 3 tier cake stand affair and all was presented well and tasted fantastic.
            This was an introduction for our daughter to greek food and we thought the quality and authenticity was great, she loved it all.
            Prices were reasonable for London, we did however use some Tesco vouchers which meant we paid just for the drinks in cash ourselves, bargain!
            We would definately go here again, with or without the tesco vouchers. I believe the other branches are arranged differently and the seating at this one is unique so if the high seats dont suit you maybe try a different branch.

            THIS REVIEW WAS POSTED PREVIOUSLY ON QYPE BY MYSELF UNDER THE NAME SUNLINESAM

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              09.03.2006 12:34

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              brilliant food, brilliant service, bill was an excellent size!

              This is a brilliant place for groups, I went in a group of 11, we all had a round of drinks, quite a few starters (averaged to about 3 starters between 2) and a main course each, oh and a couple of desserts & a couple of greek coffees (these take about 10/15 mins to brew and not very yummy!). Our bill came to...wait for it.....$14.50 a head!!!

              The food was really tasty, definately worth the money, the portions are fair for what you pay for and there is a brilliant selection on the menu for veggies....there were 4 veggies in our group and they were very happy!

              The staff are friendly and helpful, the service was not the best service ever but it was good and you can't complain, they were very happy to help, and to be fair it is not easy looking after a group of 11 drunkards!

              Good news is that they have opened another on the south bank so loverly view of st pauls and the river....it is an ideal place for a quick bite to eat over lunch, as we ate loads, the bill was cheap and we were satisfied with how much we had eaten!

              Highly recommend either the one in Hoxton or the one on the south bank!

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              20.05.2001 02:05
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              No, I haven't been in the sun too long, and I've never had a holiday fling that's left me with a rosy view of the cuisine, and yet I'm about to rave about a Greek restaurant. Yes, that's right, a Greek restaurant serving fantastic Greek food. Up until I set foot in 'The Real Greek', I didn't know that the words 'fantastic', 'Greek' and 'food' could all be used in that order in the same sentence, but this little gastronomic miracle exists, right here in Britain. I even went back a second time to check that it wasn't a weird 'Brigadoon' type experience. The restaurant was still there, and the food was, if anything, even better. I do fear that The Real Greek will lose out on a lot of trade simply because people will not be inclined to spend proper money on a Greek meal, particularly if all the Greek food they've eaten has been on holiday. I have to admit, if this restaurant was a little more local to me, I probably wouldn't tell you about it, and would plan to keep the good news to myself. Luckily for those of you who are smart enough to book a table today, it's a long way for me to travel just for dinner. I discovered the place purely by accident. I stay in the neighbourhood quite often and often take a stroll around in the evening, the area is changing fast and there's loads going on so it's an entertaining hour. The restaurant stands out as it has bright blue frontage, and I took a mooch past. Seeing that it was Greek I wasn't too excited but the place looked full, and with a good crown of 30-50 somethings in couples and small to medium groups. I stopped in for dinner. The wait staff are friendly and helpful although by and large they are British or Antipodean. The only Greek I've encountered in there is the commis waiter. It isn't a huge restaurant, and it has an old schoolroom feel. It looks like it might once have bee
              n a traditional grocers or butchers several decades ago. There's no naff 'Greekification' of the place, it seems comfortable as a London restaurant. The menu is sensibly laid out in four sections, Mezedes (appetisers), Entrees (separated into small and main dishes) and desserts. I ate a la carte, but they do offer an excellent prix fixe 2 course lunch or early dinner for £14.50, and I'm told that if you keep an eye in the papers they do sign up to those 'lunch for £10' deals in The Times. Mezedes are a superb idea. Each option includes four or five teeny tiny dishes, perhaps three mouthfuls of each, so you get a good selection of tastes, without filling up. It is possible to mix up the dishes from each option if there are things you don't like. I'd recommend Domatokeftedes, a kind of veggie pancake, and monkfish cheek, but these are just two I remember. There was a marvelous spicy feta cheese dish, and something splendid with sardines. Oddities I didn't try included stuffed kid and milk fed lamb. Nothing is horrible, so ensure that everyone in your party orders something different so you get a taste of the maximum number of dishes (I recommend taking very fussy, skinny dining companions, so you can scoff their leftovers). Main dishes include an excellent feta, leek and spinach dish with marinated peppers, and a superb cuttlefish casserole. Vegetarians have plenty of choices, and there are good options for fish eaters. Carnivores can go mad with stuffed duck, venison, or just good old-fashioned rib eye steak. Everything is cooked to perfection, and the accompaniments burst with flavour. I was impressed that those dishes that were supposed to be hot, were hot, the cold ones cold, and the warm, you guessed it, warm. Few restaurants achieve this at the best of times, but when several dishes are served on the same plate it is excellent. I have to tell you about the bread! Wherever I went
              in Greece I longed for a decent piece of fresh, flavourful bread, what I got was stale tasteless white loaf. At The Real Greek a steady supply of different regional breads are served. The courgette bread, though odd sounding, is delicious, and if they offer you something that looks like a plate of fried worms, grab a stack of it, tell your companions that it is fried worms and eat all of theirs too. These heavenly little twiglets are potato and olive bread, the most divine combination of ingredients that really don't sound too promising. The Real Greek carries this whole 'real Greek' thing into the wine list, which I didn't think was smart, until I tried some. No retsina followed by Metaxa here! The list is extensive and I hadn't a clue what to order, so I asked the waiter to choose something to go with my starter. He came back with a refreshing, crisp white from Crete. I wanted another glass, but he chose something else for the main course, something scrummy from Macedonia. On my next visit, I pulled the same helpless routine and was served more great Greek wine. No, not a typo, Greek wine that was great! The restaurant was established in 1999 by Theodore Kyriakou, who was one of the founders of Livebait, a very successful London eaterie. Kyriakou grew up in Greece with parents who were passionate about food. I'd like to thank them! It has since been nominated for a mantle full of awards and won the Time Out award for Best New Restaurant last year. The Real Greek isn't cheap, and if you were expecting a top notch meal for the price you'd pay for a bad one in Greece then off to the kebab shop with you. Expect to pay £25 -35 plus wine per person for a three course dinner, and expect to consider that a bargain. It is wise to book ahead as they are busy, even mid week. Local parking after 6pm is free on street, and easy to find. The Real Greek Hoxton Market London N1 6HG (Close to Old St Tube, just behind the Holiday Inn Express) Tel: 020 7739 8212 www.therealgreek.co.uk

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