The city of Volos may be famous for its tsipouradika (restaurants serving the traditional grape-based spirit “tsipouro” and accompanying meze), and you’ll find plenty of guides to those online, but there’s much more to the local gastronomy scene. Below are five other stops to make.
The patisserie Kypsele, opened in the 1960s, is a Volos institution. The people who work here are like an open embrace, willing to dedicate as much time as necessary to help their customers choose between treats like traditional yogurt, vanilla or chocolate custard cream, goat’s milk ice cream with agave syrup, galaktoboureko (custard pie with phyllo pastry), baked desserts, almond cakes, baklava, and samali (a syrupy semolina cake). The entire setting, simple and bright, with a showcase refrigerator from the 1950s, is reminiscent of another era – when hospitable, genuine, and honest when businesses built trust with their customers. Paying a visit to Kypsele feels like entering a photo by Greek photographer Costas Balafas (1917-2011) and becoming part of the composition.
Kypsele: 96 2as Novemvriou, Tel. (+30) 24210.246.77
Another classic haunt in Volos is the Achilleion, a historic listed building dating from 1925, located on the coastal road with unobstructed views towards the Pagasetic Gulf. Here you’ll find Achilleion Foyer, a café-bar popular for brunch, dinner, and drinks that’s been recently renovated and tastefully decorated to reflect the building’s former glory. Come here for a peinirli with eggs and homemade sausage; Italian omelet with tomato and greens; chicken nuggets with jalapeño, garlic mayo and BBQ sauce; or short ribs with gnocchi, metsovone cheese, and smoked eggplant purée.
Achilleion Foyer: 54 Argonafton, Tel. (+30) 24210.221.25
Coffee lovers who appreciate carefully sourced and processed quality beans must head to Rúbia Street Speciality Coffee Shop (or just Rúbia for short). With ten electric coffee grinders, they grind your coffee beans on the spot, serving specialty coffees from Colombia, Ethiopia, Papua New Guinea, Mexico, and more. The entire experience is truly worth it, since the flavor of specialty coffee (which, we should mention, is available at several Volos coffee shops) is miles better than your regular coffee.
Rúbia: 74 Glavani, Tel. (+30) 24212.160.44
If you like meat, the ideal place to visit is Kreatos Texni (pronounced Kreatos Tehni, meaning Meat Art), a type of modern “hasapotaverna” –a combined butcher shop and restaurant created by Evripidis Tsintos, a local originally from Karditsa, who sources all his meat from Thessaly (pork from Almyros, and mutton, lamb, and beef from Elassona). The specialty is kontosouvli (spit-roasted pork), and all grilled meats. Besides dining in the restaurant’s yard, featuring stone walls and traditional mosaic flooring, this is also a good place to purchase edible souvenirs, such as their delicious leek sausage.
Kreatos Texni: 131-133 Dimitriados, Tel. (+30) 24210.203.40
Popular with locals and visitors alike, Brighton combines the sharing culture of a meze restaurant with the typical flavors of a more upscale restaurant. Here you’ll find innovative dishes cooked with excellent ingredients. Think mushrooms, beans, baked tomatoes, pickled onion, and feta mousse. Themed culinary evenings feature guest chefs (such as their Asian cuisine evenings with chef Aris Xanthos). Notably, the friendly environment and warm atmosphere here were appreciated by the British newspaper Guardian, which included Brighton in a list of the top ten restaurants in Europe located next to train stations in 2020, based on the preferences of its readers.
Brighton: Giannitson-Lahana, Tel. (+30) 24213.139.00