Vine Leaves Taverna

God I adore Xmas. The cherubic singing of carols, hot mince pies straight from the oven, good cheer to all and a smile in the heart of every true Englishman. False. These are of course lies. I really enjoy the excellent TV, room temperature mince pies and mandatory vacation days. Children ruin Christmas for everyone and Christmas music triggers a violent reaction for which no court in the land (land = Honduras) would convict me. Christmas music is only slightly preferable to having a vengeful Frenchman cheesegrate my nutbag. I’ve evolved from blaming Christmas music itself rather the insufferable villains who insist on playing it. The only good piece of Xmas music used to (inexplicably) be the one by The Pogues, but even that has been tainted by over-playing. Screw you Xmas music. Screw you.

Which is why going to Vine Leaves Taverna (http://www.vineleavestaverna.co.uk/) was such a breath of fresh air. Christmas lights and cards aside, you wouldn’t have known it was late December. In Vine Leaves Taverna you are transported not to a sterile Xmas wonderland, but to somewhere in Greece presumably where the owner comes from. Traditional/hilarious Greek ballads piped through the sound system meaning I could breath a sigh of relief. After a brief natter with the friendly chief, who clearly loves his food, myself and Mrs Del Monte over-ordered a platter of meze. It was all excellent and I’ll let the pictures do the talking

But special mention must be made of the Saganaki. Not only was it the target of the Enola Gay but also deep fried Haloumi coated with breadcrumbs, coriander and chilli. This stuff is the real deal. Imagine garlic bread, but instead of bread it’s cheese. If for no other reason we should bail out Greece as often as those tax-dodging, early retirees want. Stuff democracy, the Olympics and the cotton gin. Saganaki is the real Greek gift to the world.

£27.35 for two people with only one tall, cool Mythos beer. I shall go again. In fact, I shall break in to get me some more of that there Saganaki.

I spent a week in Santorini eating excellent Greek food. You have to go a long way to beat fresh fish grilled on the beach. And proper Greek salad with a slab of Feta plonked on top. No silly little cubes of white gold from the real Greeks. And excellent white wine.

Ἑλλάς!

Mythos beer is real.

Mythos beer is real.

The much heralded Saganaki. It surrendered easily into my mouth.

The much heralded Saganaki. It surrendered easily into my mouth.

Lounza, little gammon steaks which can be combined with grilled Haloumi for delicious results.

Lounza, little gammon steaks which can be combined with grilled Haloumi for delicious results.

Houmous. Good stuff.

Houmous. Good stuff.

Baklava? I hardly knew her!

Baklava? I hardly knew her!

Keftedakia? I hardly knew her etc etc

Keftedakia? I hardly knew her etc etc

Spanakoptia? I hardly ... etc etc

Spanakoptia? I hardly … etc etc

Tiropitakia? You know where I'm going with this.

Tiropitakia? You know where I’m going with this.

Dolmades. I hiked the Dolmades during the Greek leg of my Grand Tour with my university friend Terrence. He was a gentle soul and kept imploring me to watch Brokeback Mountain before we left.

Dolmades. I hiked the Dolmades during the Greek leg of my Grand Tour with my university friend Terrence. He was a gentle soul but insisted that I watch Brokeback Mountain before we left.

vine_aftermath

What is Greek for early-onset Diabetes. My guess: Spiros Drachma Diabetes.

O menu. Greek for Le menu.

O menu. Greek for Le menu.

I did not take this picture.

I did not take this picture.

I did take this picture. Can you tell? It's the lighting isn't it. I know, I know. It's just not my thing.

I did take this picture. Can you tell? It’s the lighting isn’t it? I know, I know. Photography’s just not my thing.

the big board greece
Vine Leaves Taverna
71 Uxbridge Road
London
W12 8NR
Tel: 020 8749 0325
http://www.vineleavestaverna.co.uk/

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: