Friday, December 30, 2011

Ringing In New Year GREEK STYLE

If you're in Greece on New Year's Eve - you can expect much of the same activities that we are used to here in the United States - parties, festivities, celebrations - and people out late welcoming the new, and letting go of the old.

There's card playing, fireworks, children playing in sleepy streets - and of course - eats and drinks (Greek food, of course - OPA!) at local night spots - until sunrise.

Of course, Greece has it's own traditions - such as the 'cutting of the vasilopita - which is a kind of 'New Year cake'. The cake is prepared with a coin inside, cut at the midnight hour as the new year dawns, and the lucky one who gets the piece with the coin inside is said to have blessings in the New Year. The cake itself has huge meaning. Cut by the patriarch of the home, the first piece of the cake is for Christ, the second for the 'home' - and then, everyone else gets their piece.

Start your own tradition by joining Ziziki's or Ziziki's Taverna for New Year's Eve or our award-winning champagne brunch on New Year's Day! For all our menus, seating times and holiday hours - visit our website! OPA!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Ziziki's Named Top 100 Best Greek Restaurants in United States by National Herald

Here in the big D, we take special care to bring Greek cuisine to the states in a very authentic way; with Ya Ya's old recipes and Chef Costa's award-winning culinary skills - Ziziki's delivers a delightful mix of traditionally fine-tuned family favorites. We also work hard to keep a great selection of Greek wines and others in our Dallas Wine Bars for our customers to enjoy with their meals, or otherwise. Opa!

For us, Greek dining is a way of life - to celebrate life, and to celebrate our heritage.  The National Herald (Greek news) took the time to interview restaurant owners, try the wines and mezzes, and then pare down the Top 100 best Greek Restaurants in the country, and list them state by state.

We're thrilled to have been recognized as Top 100 - click here for the full article!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Ring in the New Year With Ziziki's - Special Dining Menu

Ziziki’s is offering a special three course New Year’s Eve Dinner on Saturday, December 31st along with our award winning wine list. Also, on Sunday, January 1st Ziziki’s will offer their flavorful “Best of Dallas” New Year's Eve champagne buffet brunch.

The three course New Year’s Eve dinner is $55 per person (tax and tip not included).

Reservations accepted for any size party at three seatings: 6PM, 8PM and 10PM.

A sampling of our chef’s favorite appetizers

Your choice of Greek Salad, Mediterranean Salad or Caprese Salad

Your choice from your favorite Ziziki’s specialities including:
  • Greek Paella
  • Grilled Rack of Lamb
  • Mediterranean Lamb Shank
Ziziki’s will feature our flavorful “Best of Dallas” champagne brunch buffet for $21.95 per person until 3PM and then the dinner menu after 4PM.

Make Ziziki’s your ritual! 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Ziziki's Nominated - WFAA-List Best Of Dallas BRUNCH

Bring out the CHAMPAGNE, it's time to celebrate! We're thrilled to have been nominated for WFAA-LIst Best of Dallas - in the category of BEST BRUNCH! This is We need your help, though - and your VOTE, and your friend's votes -  to keep us in the game. We're looking for a win this year, help us this holiday with your vote to pull off 1st place!

Thank you to all of our supporters for this nomination, and for being loyal customers for all of these years!

And look soon for information on our exclusive New Year's Eve Dinner menu and Champagne Brunch for New Year's Day! OPA!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

OPA! Greek Holiday Style

As the holidays are steadily approaching, we reminisce on what we are thankful of, celebrate family and friends and spend time making memories with loved ones. With every holiday comes special traditions and celebrations, holiday meals - that almost always are specific by culture and family. Greek holidays are unique and exciting!

Many Greek Orthodox (and Catholic, or Episcopalian) churches have a particular saint that they honor in a festival and religious service. In Greece, a panagiri, or large feast & festival, occurs when a city or village celebrates religious people with the same name as the saint being honored. Many festivals are held on high points of elevation, or at a monastery. There are several of these through the holiday season. There are small herding villages and larger townships, such as Kozani, who specifically honor the shepherds that lit the bonfires in announcement of Christ's birth. Known as the Kladaries, there is an entire ceremony around this commemoration. Attendees can expect bonfire dancing, Greek dining, Greek wine and celebration - and the event is usually celebrated on the 23rd of December.

Greek Food plays a major role in Greek celebrations. While traditional stuffed turkey is always popular, most holidays have specific traditions and dishes. The slicing of vassilopita, or New Years Cake, is a desert specific to the Feast of St. Basil on January 1st. Later in the year, on Easter, a common Greek entrée served in celebration of Jesus Christ's resurrection is lamb.

While enjoying family and friends this holiday season – keep in mind that Ziziki’s also offers holiday catering for your event, or private dining if you prefer to dine with a private corporate party or your family. Opa!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Throwing a Wedding - Greek Style

My Big Fat Greek Wedding is a hilarious account of the planning of a Greek wedding and the culture, traditions (and people) that celebrate them. Greek weddings can be considered art…and in fact, are often called “wedding art”.

Greek weddings are often very different than traditional weddings; one of the most obvious ways being the color of the brides dress. In traditional Greek weddings, the bride wears a yellow or red veil that represents the fire that will protect the bridge from evil spirits. Often times the bride will carry a lump of sugar in her possession to ensure that she will life a sweet life with her future spouse.

Ever seen the group dance in a circle? The kalamatiano is a dance that occurs with the entire bridal party. They all join hands and skip in a circle, similar to Jewish weddings.

Of course, you already know that Greek cuisine is a delicious form of art. But Greek food at a wedding - serious OPA-factor. Candy-coated Jordan almonds, bread and cakes are all enjoyable dishes for Greek weddings. The food is the highlight of the celebration with Feta Cheese, Kalamta olives and tomatoes.  Tzatziki is the perfect start to the festivities which includes a special blended yogurt dip with cucumbers, crushed garlic and vinegar garnished with a blend of almonds. It is normally eaten with Pita Bread.   You must have the famous Greek Baklava at your Greek Wedding. The several layered pastry is filled with nuts and honey syrup.

When planning your special Greek Wedding (or any event, Greek or not!) keep ZiZiki’s in mind for the perfect event catering needs.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

It Must Be Fate: FETA Cheese and the Greek Atmosphere

Not only is Feta cheese an incredible treat in Greek cooking - it's a wonderful accent to several dishes here in the U.S. (like a scrumptious breakfast omelet!)

Feta Cheese is also a product that has been around since the Byzantine Empire - so there is a lot of history behind this cheese we all love. When a visitor entered the Byzantine-controlled region in 1494, he might have noticed that they sliced their cheese to serve on a plate. Even back then, before the individually-wrapped sorts from which we actually get the saying, Feta was quickly becoming the thing that would, to the Greeks - be "the best thing since sliced cheese"!

Feta is aged cheese and is produced in blocks for uses on Greek salads, pastries, breakfast Greek entrées and many other dishes and a real normal part of the Greek culture. It is often times combined with olive oil and vegetables to bring a rich and delicate flavor to the dish. Feta is used in 60% of Greek families in their everyday life and everyday food and a great mixture with homemade wine. (Would you like a little cheese with that wine?) OPA!

What separates feta cheese from the rest is that it is made of milk from sheep around the eastern Mediterranean and Black Sea regions. Feta is a great accent to Greek dishes because of the delicious pairings with olive oil, olives as well as the enrichment it can bring to Greek dishes!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Join Our Travis Walk Location for ART OF KNOX

Join Ziziki's (Travis Walk in Uptown Dallas) for the

First Annual 
Art of Knox
Street Festival
Saturday, October 22nd (4-8pm)

Tons of Knox/Henderson area retailers and restaurants are jumping in to host this festive occasion. There will be great food & drink, live music (from Live 80 and Special Edition Band) as well as cool, interactive art. Also look for special offers and promotions, raffles, prizes, games and more.

To learn more, visit

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hmmm... What IS Hummus Anyway?

Hmmmm..... hummus.. something we enjoy as an appetizer with small pieces of flatbread, or pita bread - has a great, rich flavor and is becoming more and more popular as a (somewhat) healthier alternative to other pre-meal nibbles or afternoon snacks. But WHAT is it? And most importantly, is it GREEK?

Turns out, not. It's a popular dish throughout the Middle East - and appears to have originated there too. But don't fret: the Pita bread we eat it with definitely IS! (The actual word being from Byzantine Greekπίτα meaning pie.) Opa!

Back to hummus.What's in it? Well, recipes vary by region and culture - but it's mostly cooked, mashed chickpeas, blended with sesame seed paste (tahini), olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic. And what's best about it - is that it's a healthy alternative to so many other snacks. Why? Hummus has tons of vitamin C, iron, folate and vitamin B6. Being 'beany' - it's also chock-full of protein and fiber. 

In Greece, it's typically served as part of a meze (appetizer or small plate) or as a side dish to grilled chicken, fish or eggplant.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Going GREEK At School

Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, Epsilon…..There has never been a more fitting time for GREEK things, than at the beginning of Greek Rush (also called Greek Week) at Colleges and Universities all across the country.

"Greek life" started the year that the United State declared their independence, 1776 at the College of William and Mary in Virginia. While there were Latin "clubs" at the time, Greek fraternities emerged and distinguished themselves as being exclusive from the other clubs on campus by utilizing the Greek alphabet to identify their 'chapters'. Certainly, to this day - there are fraternities and sororities that do not have Greek letter names at all - such as Skull and Bones at Yale, Acacia and Farmhouse.

The emergence of Greek organizations, later known as "fraternities" and "sororities", took hold of college life and began to establish itself on campuses all throughout the country! Now many college students go through “Greek Rush” to become a member of a Sorority or Fraternity and it has become the most exciting part of going to college. Making new friends and attending fun events is what makes Greek life so great – some friends that last a lifetime.

Close to home, the DFW metroplex boasts a university with the 2nd largest Greek student body (by capita) in the country! TCU in Fort Worth, Texas has a campus that nearly 43% of their 8,000 students are involved in some Greek letter organization. With all the “Greek activities” going on including – Toga parties, Greek initiations and partying “Greek style” you could treat your sorority or fraternity new member for some authentic Greek food to celebrate their big moment!

Ziziki’s would be pleased to have you and your brothers or sisters come to dinner one night to celebrate. Ziziki's is known for it's catering, as well as our party rooms to cater your party or large group or private dining. Or - perhaps you're looking for a something a bit different - visit Ziziki's Taverna for our small plate appetizers and huge wine bar. Visit one of our two locations in Dallas for some great Greek cuisine and a great Greek atmosphere! Remember - It’s fun to GO GREEK!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Snacks For School - Greek Style

Snacking can be a necessary way to obtain energy, or to provide sustenance on the go. As kids go back to school and young adults off to college - they need all the energy they can get to keep attention sharp. Same goes for adults in the work place!

Everyone knows Greek cuisine is one of the healthiest. So how do people snack in Greece? Ideal foods in the summer in Greece are the Greek snack foods that you can either purchase in a Greek store, (similar to here in the US and other countries) or whip up quickly in the kitchen.

A favorite quick, Greek snack are the Greek spinach pies (also know as spanakopita). Filled with healthy spinach, tasty onions, cheese and herbs - spanakopita is a versatile dish that ca be made with all different types of cheeses as well.

We all know olives are keen in Greece. Snacking on olives, here or in the homeland - is a true summer indulgence. Greeks love their olives - and they can be served up different ways if marinated in different herbs and oils. Soak your olives in olive oil and dried oregano - and you've got a true Greek favorite snack. Toss in some feta cheese, and add some warm bread and you have a well-rounded pick-me up snack.

More quick Greek snacks are simply an arrangement of favorite cheeses and yogurts. (ahhhh.. cheese... truly a Mediterranean cuisine favorite!) 

If sweet snacks are your weakness – the Greeks usually opt for healthy sweet nuts and local honey - also fantastic coupled with yogurt!

Greeks have their guilty pleasures, too - just like Americans - with their chips and sweet-tooth snacks. On the less-healthy side, you could always opt for chocofreta chocolate wafers with hazelnuts,or a bag of white salted chick peas. 

Leaving the kitchen – (and perhaps visiting the blue waters of the beach on the lovely coastline of Greece) - especially on the summer days - is the Greek’s favorite thing to do. So snacking on the go is essential. To indulge - they will typically eat at a little Greek tavern is their way to indulge then they return to the home to eat in the late evening when it’s cooler.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Ziziki's Big Opa! By Chef Costa

Every Greek says their YaYa (Grandma) makes the best Keftedes (meatballs).  It seems like this debate has been going on since the time of Socrates.  I can assure you though; my YaYa’s Greek meatballs are the best!  YaYa Katina grew up in Thessaloniki which is in the Northern part of Greece known for its farming and raising of sheep and goats.  YaYa always made meatballs with 100% lamb unlike most keftedes recipes that call for a mixture of beef, pork and lamb or some combination thereof.  Since Ziziki’s meatballs are made with lamb, it was my idea to add French Feta and a bit of Mozzarella for moisture.

When YaYa Katina made Keftedes, she always made a lot of these as my family would eat these as an appetizer, on flatbread like a pizza, with pasta for dinner or just eat them cold, straight out of the refrigerator as a snack.  Ziziki’s country-style Keftedes are flavored with oregano, mint and a bit of crumbled French Feta and Mozzarella.  Our hand-rolled meatballs are baked and served on a simple plum tomato sauce.   After you try Ziziki’s Keftedes appetizer, you judge and let me know if they aren’t the best Greek meatballs you’ve ever had!

Visit us for the very best Greek food in Dallas!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Mary's Wine PIck

I am always looking for that new unique wine to offer at Ziziki’s and…WOW…you will fall in love with the two wines that we are featuring this week from Patagonia Argentina.  Argentina has been making wine since the 1500s, tracing its wine heritage back to Spain, France and Italy.  Located in the province of Neuquen, is a young and innovative new winery…Bodega NQN…which was established in 2001.  The winery is situated in a modern, chic, low-lying building set into the Patagonian landscape…a setting truly representative of the creativity of owner, Lucas Nemesio, who has an architectural background.  The unique wines NQN is producing from this cool climate in the Southern Hemisphere are truly superb.  When I tasted these wines last month with Lucas, I thought they would be a great match with our flavorful Greek cuisine.

Malma Sauvignon Blanc 2010    $8/glass
This Sauvignon Blanc rivals the best from Marlborough, New Zealand.  It is fruity and crisp with a more rounded mouthfeel and nice acidity on the finish which makes this wine a perfect food wine or just great on a hot Dallas summer day.

Malma Malbec 2009    $8/glass
This malbec has intense red color and aromas of red fruit, fresh raspberry, plum and cherry.  The bright fruit has vanilla hints from its oak aging.  This Malbec has good structure and a slight spice on the finish which stands up well to our great lamb dishes, including our Greek meatballs.

NQN brings the kind of passion to wine that gets your attention…these two wines certainly got my attention!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Reds, Whites and Blues this Fourth Of July

It's July 4th weekend - and what better way to celebrate than to celebrate Old Glory, her colors - and all things red, white and blue? Certainly, being Dallas Best Greek Restaurant - we'll need to keep it to red, white and blue FOODS, but you get the idea!

Red Foods

Reds are typically REAL healthy foods - lots of fruits and veggies are in the red family of foods.
Fruit and sweet vegetables: cherries, cranberries, red raspberries, strawberries, watermelon.
Meat: elk, ostrich, pepperoni, rare beef, salmon, summer sausage.
Vegetables: red beans, red peppers, red radishes, tomatoes.

Wine: red wine of course!

White Foods

Well, we hope you aren't lactose intolerant if you're wanting to celebrate with colored foods this Independence Day.  Most white foods are dairy-related. There are a few ideas for white coloration - here are some of those:
Dairy products: cottage cheese, cream, cream cheese, milk, plain yogurt, sour cream, vanilla ice cream, white cheese (swiss, mozzerella, etc.).
Fruits and sweet vegetables: apples (peeled), bananas (peeled), coconut, lychees, pears (peeled), white nectarines, white peaches.

Meat: catfish, crappie, panfish, scallops.
Vegetables: button mushrooms, cauliflower, great northern beans, rice, white asparagus, white icicle radishes, white onions, white potatoes, white sweet corn.
Wine: white wine!

Blue Foods

There's only a couple of naturally blue foods. We've outlined those for you here too.
Fruits and sweet vegetables: blueberries.
Vegetables: all-blue potatoes (peeled or with skins), blue-skinned potatoes (skin on), blue corn.
Red cabbage starts out sort of purple and white, but when blanched in water with a base (such as baking soda) it turns blue.
Wine: None... :(

We'll work on the blue wine! OPA!

Saturday, June 18, 2011


Olives aren't just for martinis! They're the staple of a great meal - and diet. This Father's Day - say "OLIVE YOU, DAD" and treat him to a healthy, rich GREEK meal! OPA!

Why are olives important in the Greek diet? Well, as a cooking medium - olive oil is the most common cooking oil used in kitchens world-wide. Certainly - olives can be eaten whole, or used as a garnish - but they are most common in oil form and in salad dressings. Just like traditional Greek restaurant, Ziziki’s uses olive oil for cooking too. For example- our calamari is lightly sautéed with olive oil, white wine, and lemon. Other Greek dishes and appetizers (or, mezzes) are served with whole kalamata olives.

But where do olives come from? Olive trees typically were abundant throughout history in the Mediterranean area. The trees are super-strong, and live many years. Different types of olives come from different areas: Empeltre, Hojiblanca, Lechin, Picual, Cornicabra, Verdial, Arbequina, Picudo and varieties of each. There are also the most common olives in the United States, which are the black and green olives.  Depending on where it's grown, the soil - there are tons of factors too, that go into how the olive will taste. They all have a unique and distinct flavor on their own.

Don't forget our special Brunch Menu just for Dad this Father's Day. Bring him over and say "OLIVE YOU!"

Monday, June 6, 2011

Father's Day On Mt. Olympus

Father’s Day is Sunday, June 19th.

Give Dad a meal fit for a king this Father's Day - celebrate at Ziziki's with a special brunch menu.  But it's a given he'd love that - what else can you do for Dad on his special day to make him feel like he's floating above Mt. Olympus?

First of all ,you should think about what kind of breakfast he likes, seeing as how breakfast is the most important meal of the day after all - and make him breakfast! In Greece, though, a meal early in the morning isn’t very important because of Greek eating customs (meaning late lunches and dinners).

If you are a Greek who likes to eat, though, a cup of black tea sweetened with honey along with some feta cheese, olives, and bread should make any Greek Father very proud! Remember, though, that presentation counts for a lot!

After tha,t make sure you have some kind of gift – it can be very simple, or elaborate as well - just something that you know he will love and cherish. Maybe it's an activity he enjoys, like a game of backgammon or even a Kompoloi! After you present him with his gift and some time has gone by make sure you’re already preparing for the next meal! OPA!

If you decide to cook at home choose an authentic Greek dish like Moussaka (eggplant casserole), Keftedakia (fried meatballs with oregano and mint), Spetsofai (a stew of country sausage, green mild peppers, onions and wine), or any of the other countless number of great Greek cuisines! Then make sure you finish the meal off with a great home cooked dessert like Baklava (layers of pastry with nuts, sugar, syrup and spices).   Disclaimer - if you are uncomfortable cooking any of these things, might we remind you Costa is - of course - extremely skilled in this arena - as his awards indicate, and we are happy to provide any culinary needs on Dad's special day. Or, you can just make reservations and enjoy our Father's Day brunch menu. Opa!

After this meal is over with, take your dad to do something he always wanted to do or maybe just have a party for him that includes his closest friends and greatest relatives! Plan games, events, and just good fun!

Once all of this is over, it's likely everyone will once again, be very hungry, so you will get to eat again!

Zizki's would like to wish ALL the Father's out there a VERY HAPPY Father's Day! opa!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Zizikis Taverna Is An Addison Reader's Choice Nominee

The time comes once again that our patrons and their obvious satisfaction honor us!A special thank you goes out to our Addison patrons, who have nominated us once again for a great honor! We've been named a nominee for Favorite Mediterranean Food Restaurant in Addison with Addison Magazine Reader's Choice Awards

We are thrilled to have received this nomination and we thank our wonderful clients for nominating us.

Want to see Zizikis in first place like we do? Then we need your help to win first place! Please take a moment to vote for Ziziki's Taverna: Best Mediterranean Restaurant.

Now, what really qualifies as “best”? Well, “best” can be defined as most advantageous, suitable, or desirable. If you feel like Zizikis’ food - like our many specialties and hot and cold mezzes – are as desirable as we think they are then please don’t think twice about visiting and picking our name!