Taki’s Greek Kitchen, one of the few authentic Greek restaurants in Greater Cleveland, will open to the public on Thursday, Sept. 27.
The restaurant, at 377 Lear Road, is in the space previously occupied by Tucky’s Hot Dogs in the front of Learwood Plaza, and has undergone extensive renovations.
“This is progressive Greek,” Peter “Taki” Diamantis said at an open house on Sept. 25. “It’s classic Greek with a twist."
Diamantis is no stranger to Avon Lake. The owner of Athena’s Deli, also in Avon Lake, said he opened the restaurant in Learwood Plaza, in part due to the lack of Greek restaurants in Cleveland.
The changing demographics of the area were also a factor.
“I’ve been (in Avon Lake) for 14 years; with the Interchange opening soon and the younger demographics, this is the right time.”
In addition to extensive lunch and dinner menus, the restaurant has a full bar.
Josh Smith, the Chef de Cuisine, said he would recommend ouzo or wine to complement the meals.
“Everything is made fresh, the flavors are clean and it’s that real healthy Mediterranean food,” Smith said. “The baklava is fantastic, so are the dips and salads. A lot of the food is traditional; some of the recipes are from Peter's mother."”
One of his personal favorites? The braised lamb shank with a tomato cinnamon sauce.
The restaurant is offering a dinner menu that includes small plates (stuffed grape leaves, dips and char grilled octopus, etc.), Greek salads, burgers and sandwiches, appetizers (mussels, Greek meatballs, stuffed peppers and pan fried feta) as well as daily specials, fish and grilled items. Taki’s also offers a selection of vegetarian and vegan items and desserts on it's dinner menu.
The lunch specials include chargrilled salmon, stuffed roasted red pepper and a fish of the day, as well as other items on the lunch menu. (See photos for lunch and dinner menus.)
Diamantis pursued his culinary training at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. After graduating, he worked at the Maisonette in Cincinnati and then spent 13 years as Executive Chef of Johnny's Bar on Fulton Road. He left that position to open Athena's Restaurant 14 years ago.
Diamanti previously owned MBISTRO is Westlake, which he eventually sold seven years after its opening, one week after 9-11.
He said bringing authentic Greek cuisine to the market is a dream come true.
The restaurant will be open 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday - Thursday, 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. on Friday, 4 p.m. - 10 p.m on Saturday and closed on Sunday. Their number is 440-930-8888.