Experience Greek culture in Santa Fe

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Restaurants > Several eateries will feature traditional Greek dishes

By The Staff

 The 17th Annual Santa Fe Greek Festival, hosted by the St. Elias the Prophet Greek Orthodox Church, has a new venue and new dates this year. The Santa Fe Greek Festival will be 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Eldorado Hotel in the Pavillion Room.
This is a festival that is a great way to experience Greek culture in Santa Fe, along with Greek food, pastries, music, dancing and beer and wine too.
New Mexico’s premier Greek band, “The Aegean Sounds,” will be serenading festival attendees and the Palamakia Dancers will be performing traditional Greek dances. A new addition to the entertainment line-up this year is Santa Fe’s own Pomegranate Studios’ Mosaic Dance Company will be performing belly-dancing.
“We have recruited many Santa Fe restaurant owners and chefs who are of Greek descent to create our menu, once again, for the festival.” said Violet Santikos, advertising chair. “We’ll have Moussaka on the menu for the first time this year too.”
This year’s menu and the restaurant owners involved are as follows: Leonardo Razatos of the Plaza Café Southside will be preparing Gyros (beef and lamb) or Chicken Gyros with fresh pita bread and tomatoes, onion and tzatziki sauce.
Dean Alexis of Upper Crust Pizza and Tortilla Flats will be providing Greek Calzone filled with feta cheese, Greek olives, spinach, onions and seasoned with oregano, as well as a Greek salad. Alexis will also be contributing Spanakopita (a filo pastry dough triangle filled with spinach and feta cheese) and Moussaka (slices of potato and eggplant layered with meat sauce and topped with a creamy béchamel sauce. Ignatios Patsalis, of Tomasita’s/Atrisco Cafe will contribute Pastitsio (the Greek version of lasagna with penne noodles, sautéed meat, tomato sauce, parsley, salt, pepper and a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg — topped with a creamy béchamel sauce).
Ziggy Rzig, of the Pyramid Cafe will round the menu out with a vegetarian dish, which will be a plate with Baba Ganoush, hummus, tabouli, dolmades and a warm pita bread.
“We will definitely have our delicious Greek pastries available including, Baklava, Kourambiedes (powdered sugar cookies), Melomakarona (honey cookies with walnuts), Koulourakia (Greek twist cookies — great to dunk in coffee) and Loukoumades (fluffy fried balls of dough coated with a light honey sauce and a sprinkle of cinnamon), as well as our Greek Coffee.” Santikos said.
Another new feature this year is the Silent Auction. To donate any items or gift certificates for the silent auction, contact Tonya Boone at tboone@ekkoranch.com.
There will also be a “Greek Agora” (Greek Import Store) that will be selling Greek gift items, as well as canned and bottled Greek foods throughout the festival and several large raffle prizes.
There is a $3 admission fee for adults and children 12 and under are free. All food and drink tickets can be purchased at the festival. For more information about the Santa Fe Greek Festival, contact Violet Santikos at 577-4742, or visit the website at santafegreekfestival.com.