Pireaus Blues

310 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, VIC

All Details

Kylie Northover

The chicken souvlaki and Greek salad from Pireaus Blues Greek restaurant in Fitzroy.
Photo: Eddie Jim

WHERE AND WHAT

A PROPER old-school, family-run restaurant, Pireaus Blues serves up home-style, Cypriot-influenced cooking in an unpretentious setting. For the past 16 years it has been every bit as busy as its more fashionable neighbours on Brunswick Street. The walls are adorned with family photos and the kind of knick-knackery you would find in a family taverna in Greece.

WHERE TO SIT

In true taverna style, there are lots of simple tables, close together, although in winter the prime spot is in front of the log fire. Upstairs at weekends is crowded and noisy, with big tables of families and banqueting groups.

WHEN TO GO

Open every day for dinner from 5pm until late and from noon until late on Sundays. Lunch is available Wednesday to Friday from noon until 3pm. Occasionally, there is live music in the evenings. Best to book a table if you plan to dine on the weekend.

DRINK

There is an extensive wine list, largely focusing on Australian wines and a few regional Greek varieties. Each wine listing carries a suggested food to match. For after dinner, there is a good list of bracing Greek liqueurs.

EAT

You won't find any modern interpretations or deconstructed dishes here - if you order the calamari or the braised goat, it is presented pretty much as it has been for centuries in Greece. The lunch menu is great value, with generously proportioned souvlakis about $15.95. At first glance the dinner menu seems sparse but the serves are big and there is a range of salads, dips and bread and a changing specials board. Entrees are not so cheap but, again, they are huge and work well for sharing - try the amazing spetsofai (spicy pork and leek sausage cooked casserole style, $15.50) or a classic saganaki ($11.95). There is also, of course, dolmade, whitebait, dips and pita bread. Roasted meats are the speciality when it comes to mains, then there's seafood, chargrilled meats and oven-baked dishes. The souvlakis (chicken $25.95 or lamb $27.95) are chargrilled to perfection and served on a bed of lemon potatoes which might well be worth the visit alone. Other classics include biftekia (marinated grilled beef rissoles), moussaka and yemista (stuffed vegetables and rice). Try to save room for dessert - halva ice-cream, baklava and usually a special or two - and a post-dinner raki or ouzo.

WHO'S THERE?

A mixed crowd of Brunswick Street types and Greek families.

WHY BOTHER?

Gerasimos Stamoulis and Flora Karanikos keep the specials menu interesting with great peasant dishes such as goat and rabbit.

Pireaus Blues - 310 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, phone 9417 0222.

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310 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, VIC

  • Cuisine - Greek
  • Prices - Entree $15.50, Main $28, Dessert $8.50
  • Features - Licensed, Bar, BYO
  • Chef(s) - Gerasimos Stamoulis & Flora Karanikos
  • Owners - George & Flora Karanikos, Les & Vicki Thomaidis
  • Cards accepted - AMEX, Diners Club, Mastercard, Visa, EFTPOS
  • Opening Hours - Mon-Sat 5pm-late, Wed-Fri noon-3pm, Sun noon-late
  • Seats - 200
  • Author - Kylie Northover
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Reader ratings (48)

1 comment so far

  • Before I start my review - why is the name misspelled? It should be Piraeus.... I guess there's a reason for the misspelling..

    My wife and I wanted to dine at a family restaurant on New Year's Eve 2012, and chose Pireaus Blues because of the good reviews. They fitted us in even though it was a last-minute booking.
    Excellent food and service. We felt that we were guests in their home.
    Thank you George&Flora, Les&Vicki, and all the family for your hospitality and compliments to the cooks.
    We live in London, but will certainly visit again when we're in Melbourne.
    Highly recommended!

    Commenter
    They certainly know how to cook!
    Location
    Date and time
    January 25, 2013, 11:01AM

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