By Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech
Amylos Taverna, a new Greek-inspired restaurant located at 33-19 Broadway in Astoria, opened its doors to customers on Jan. 7.
In a neighborhood famous for its small Greek eateries, Amylos aims to prove that Greek food and fine dining go hand-in-hand.
“There is a presentation. There is an art. There is a thought,” said Martha Arvanitis, co-owner of Amylos Taverna, about the design and cuisine of the restaurant. Amylos’ modern rustic chandeliers, marble back-lit bar and mix of stone walls and wood floors create an atmosphere similar to that of many Financial District spots.
The menu — featuring dishes like lobster moussaka — is meant to elevate traditional Greek favorites. According to Arvanitis, even thought the restaurant has only been open a few days, some customers have said that it has brought “New York City to Astoria.”
“Not any [Greek] restaurant has tried to do that,” Arvanitis said.
Amylos is located a block away from Arvanitis’ other business, Omonia Café, and is currently located in the building that once housed Uncle George’s Greek Tavern, which permanently closed in 2013.
Uncle George’s generated a large amount of foot traffic on Broadway, and according to Arvanitis, the popularity of the restaurant with the Greek and Greek-American community played a large part in Omonia Café’s success.
“People would first go to George’s for diner and then to Omonia for their coffee and cake,” Arvanitis said. When George’s closed, he said, Broadway became less bustling.
Arvanitis hopes to bring back those prodigal customers to Broadway and new customers who might not consider the street their first choice for fine dining.
A total of 150 people can be seated in the roomy one-floor restaurant which is open from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays and 11:30 p.m. on weekends. Brunch service is offered from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.