Opa! Greek Taverna in Halifax Nova Scotia

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Chef Josef Majaess from Opa! Greek Taverna
I got to meet Chef Josef Majaess at Opa Greek Taverna in Nova Scotia. He is a very humble and worldly chef that pushes Greek food to the edge of tradition and sprinkles a bit of new age. His flavors are bright, lemony, and a slight hit of spice. Now, I don't know if you knew this, but my first job was as a dishwasher in  a little Greek Restaurant in Delaware called "European Bistro." I was a Pearl Jam listening, long haired, "grunge" kid that went there to work at a very conservative (but very pink- literally, everything was pink) Greek restaurant. The husband and wife owners, Gino and Ruth Veriopolas, were the most caring people I ever met and it was here that I fell in love with Greek cuisine and culture.

Most times I come back to the states or travel to another country, I try to have at least one Greek meal. It is nostalgia and it reminds me of my youth. Sometimes, it is great, but often it's just...meh. At Opa! Greek Taverna, it was not meh, but outstanding. Chef Josef Majaens uses all fresh ingredients, sources locally- when he can, and gets the top grade Greek ingredients. Also, the restaurant has a very modern look to it. It's very open and the skyroof makes it feel like you are having lunch on an outside field on a temperate day.

I am glad that I had a chance to experience this restaurant while I was in Nova Scotia and I'll have to come back again. Now if I can make some room in my stomach, I will have to go (there is a location downtown) and have a slice of his Feta Cheese Cake topped with Quince.

Opa Greek Taverna
215 Chain Lake Dr.
Halifax, NS B3S 1C9
902-876-8899
www.opataverna.com

Greek Grilled Octopus. (It's tender because they beat it first against a rock) at Opa Greek Taverna

See more pictures after the jump


Calamari with homemade tzikiki (cucumber yogurt sauce) at Opa Greek Taverna

Homemade Flatbread topped with an dried herb and sesame seeds. The lemony sumac made this bread transcendent.

Saganaki Opa! Pan-fried Cheese (Kefalograviera Cheese) served flambeed at the table.

Chef Josef with my lunch: Stuffed Atlantic Halibut with a feta cheese sauce, lentil salad, Greek Salad, and a potato baked with spinach and feta. I believe this was off menu. Thanks Josef.

Halloumi Cheese Sandwich on homemade bread at Opa! Greek Taverna

Great Interior

I loved the colors
Opa! Greek Taverna

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