Thursday, 30 July 2009

Afternoon in a Greek Taverna

For the final leg of our Greek odyssey we spent a little time in bustling Corfu. We were aware that this is a favourite tourist destination and could immediately see why. The township sits on an island off the north west coast of Greece and is particularly picturesque with its steep rolling hills that drop straight into a clear blue ocean. Being an important strategic location for ancient battles, it is dotted with early fortifications that are perched high in the hills and provide wonderful views of the undulating coastline. Within the old town itself there is a labyrinth of narrow cobblestone streets crammed with tourist shops and eateries. It was here that Jules and I would begin our much anticipated search for an authentic Greek meal… something that eluded us so far, due to our busy sightseeing schedule. We were being very particular about our choice of venue as we looked for the freshest seafood we could possibly find (no frozen food for us). Eventually we found an accommodating owner who assured us that his fish was fresh off the boat today. Taking him on his word we sat down in a comfortable alfresco spot that provided a view of the harbour. Clearly the owner was determined to backup his word with actual proof, as within minutes he came running over with a massive platter of assorted fresh fish and seafood to meet our approval. He had certainly proved his point and we settled down to the delicious Greek meal of calamari, sardines, Greek salad, cold Greek beers and Greek coffee…an authentic lunch to remember! At that point we reflected on how lucky Australia was to have had such an influx of Greek migrants during the 50’s and 60’s and how much they had truly influenced our taste for food. We also realised that the Greek experience is not just about it’s ancient history, scenic beauty and beautiful waters, which are all in abundance, but it is very much about the simplicity of their lifestyle … good food, drink and company, shared in a climate that is not too dissimilar to home.

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