day 2 melbourne – dinner at stalactites …

tempting palates decided to go greek for dinner this time.  so we headed off to lonsdale street better known as the greek precinct.  we knew where we wanted to go.  to a place called stalactites.  2 things were working against us – we had no booking and it was well after 9pm.

we got there and the place was full.  thankfully we only had to wait a few minutes before a table (for five) was ready.

being late, and not wanting big meals, we decided to go for shared dishes.

saganaki – grilled dodoni greek kefalograviera cheese served with lemon:

mixed dips of tarama (fish roe), melitzanosalata (eggplant), tzatziki (cucumber and garlic) & hommus (chickpeas) served with pita bread (warm flat bread):

lamb giro platter – marinated boneless spring lamb from the spit:

this reminded me of the scene in ‘my big fat greek wedding’ >> [upon learning ian is a vegetarian] “what do you mean, you don’t eat no meat? [the entire room stops, in shock. we hear plates break and there are gasps.] …that’s okay, that’s okay. i make lamb.”

kalamari platter – fresh kalamari, sliced, lightly floured and fried:

greek garden salad – mixed leaf lettuce, tomato, cucumber, red onion, carrot, greek feta cheese & kalamata olives sprinkled with oregano and greek homemade vinaigrette:

the atmosphere was pretty casual and and it was a tad noisy being busy and all.  it is family friendly.  people were coming and going.  there is another floor upstairs.  this place was so popular that a queue was forming outside.

useless information but worth stating – we happened to be dining in a greek restaurant in a city that boasts one of the largest greek populations outside of greece on the same night that olympiacos (the most successful soccer club in greece) was playing melbourne victory.  (olympiacos won 4-1).

if you want traditional greek food (it’s not fine dining), then stalactites is the place to go – 177/183 lonsdale st.  you can dine in or take away.  it’s open 24 hours, 7 days a week.

if you know lonsdale street then you know that nearby (185 lonsdale street) is a place called international diethnes cakes.

if you can manage to walk past and not stop to stare at their front window which shows off their wide range of greek cakes (and other sweets) then more power to you.  we stopped.  we stared.  we went in.  we ate.  there were lots and lots to choose from.  we finally settled on three.


walnut cake:

pistachio baklava:

international diethnes cakes is open every day from about 7.30am til midnight except for fridays and saturday where they close at 1am.  ironic how the word ‘diet’ is in their name, hey?

tempting palates’ overall rating score >> tempting palates

lonsdale street – a perfect blend of culture and food.  dare i ask (and go italy), won’t this place go crazy if greece win euro 2012?

“hello. welcome to the portokalos family and welcome the-the miller family. i-i was thinking last night, um, the night before my-my daughter was gonna marry, uh, i-an miller, that, um, you know, the root of the word miller is a greek word. miller come from the greek word milo, which is mean apple, there you go. as many of you know, our name portokalos is come from the greek word portokali, which means orange. so, okay, here tonight we have, uh, apple and orange… we all different, but, in the end, we all fruit.” ~ my big fat greek wedding.


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