Psirri: A square that comes to life with amazing food in the heart of Athens


Old and new shops upgrade the square with the small church of Agioi Anargyroi, the famous spot in Psirri.

In Psirri, the square with the small church of Agioi Anargyroi took off the last five years. Old and new shops have emerged and are now the latest trend within the existing ones.

Nikitas: Pure flavours

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"Nikitas" Tavern

Nikitas started in 1967 when the area was industrial to feed those who worked hard in the area—honest food made with care.

The store gained a reputation for being clean, tasty, and affordable. So, the neighbourhood may have gone through its different phases, but even in the darkest times, Nikitas was a landmark of honest food and has sworn patrons.

Decades later, here you will eat the best pork souvlaki, meraklidika meatballs and much more.

It is a shop where you eat quickly, deliciously and with prices that tried to keep them really low and succeeded. It's an authentic all-time classic in Psirri. I would drive miles for these fluffy biftekia, which I claim are some of the best in Athens.

Sofia and her brother Takis took over the business from their parents, who worked tirelessly for many years. The recipes were passed down from mother to daughter, as was the art of baking from father to son.

Thus, both siblings dedicated their souls and bodies to the tavern.

"It's a job that asks you all the time. There is no time to relax and leave the shop on autopilot. Then you're closed," says Sofia, who has been in the store all day.

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"Nikitas" Tavern

The two check every last tomato entering the store and have worked with the same suppliers for years.

"For us, it doesn't matter if you eat well once and moderately. For us, it is important to know that at Nikitas, you will always eat the same delicious food. The quality should be stable. Maybe it sounds obvious, but it's not."

I ask her if there is emotion in her food, and she says disarmingly, "Only emotion".

"Are you happy that your food is the most delicious?" I ask, and she honestly answers, "Of course". Few will understand it because the taste will be basically the same, but when the soul dances, then the food is also a poem. You feed them happiness. Our happy food has beneficial benefits."

I eat wonderful greens, fluffy biftekia and a grilled spicy feta slice that I dip into the golden French fries, fried in pure oil, and I feel transported to good old Greece, where everything was more honest and pure.

It is important to be able to take my lunch break in a place so clean and tidy that it feels like eating at the home of a beloved relative on well-laid, checkered tablecloths.

Address: 19 Agios Anargyron, Psirri Square, Tel: 210 3252591

Myller: The most skilful coffee

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An old shop that sold soles and materials for shoemakers and had been closed for years was turned into a tasteful cafe that kept the name of the old business without any signs. What catches my attention are the cheerfully painted windows and the feeling of being outside Greece.

I feel like I'm in some corner of Berlin. The owner, Nikos, like his shop, is "modern". When I ask him why he decided to open his cafe here, he replies that it is as if the shop itself chose him since everything was easy and effortless.

Konstantinos Metaxas is the restless architect who oversaw the renovation and created clean, simple lines.

"And who had the great idea about the windows?" I ask. "The store had a lot of windows, and it was difficult to clean them, so Evangelos Michalis, the visual artist who deals with the interior, had the idea to fill the windows with graffiti. So it happened".

Along with the coffee, they give markers to patrons, and they improvise. I wrote "Julie" in the blank, and I'm very happy that I also put something in this glass.

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Patrons improvise on the windows with markers

The coffee here, however, is the protagonist. Brewed properly and skillfully. Nikos has worked as a barista at a high level and knows first-hand where to look for excellent coffees and A-class blends.

"I don't mind if I have a smaller profit; I care about the coffee you drink and your brain being impressed. And an excellent coffee is not only about the taste but also how it works in your body."

I drink a great almond milk decaf, and I haven't had a nicer decaf ever! But how come it doesn't taste flat, I ask him.

"Decaf is misunderstood; if you make it right, it can be great."

I also ate a perfect brownie vegan cake, juicy, chocolatey, and guilt-free with no sugar and unnecessary calories. "Here, you won't find sugar, flour, or anything unhealthy," says Nikos. We are all fans of vegan products.

Myller is like being in a cafe of the future. I will come every time I'm in the area.

Address: 9 Myller Katsikogianni, Tel : 211 7356629

Po'Boys: A Burger, Cause of a 'Coup'


Not one, not two, but sixteen different burgers.

In 2019, Vassilis Sporos opened the sought-after burger joint in the part of Psirri that had yet to become trendy. It didn't take long for burger lovers to discover it, go crazy, and rightfully return here again and again.

The decor is travel-y, and you think you're back in the 50s. Clean burgers and juicy with smoked meats.


Vassilis has mastered the art of good baking so well. It helped that he lived in America for years and closely followed the philosophy surrounding barbecue and how to make "smoked" meats. He wanted to bring this American culture of smoked meats and grilling to Athens.

He started from a small canteen in the early years and quickly saw queues forming. He got to know better what the Greeks wanted and decided to grow the business there.

I try my classic double smashed cheeseburger, buttermilk fried chicken burger and the tipsy Texan burger: every bite and a murmur of delight. I am trying to decide which one to choose first and put it on top of my preferences.

This is my image of happiness, i.e. trying many different tasty and juicy burgers.

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The meat is so clean and delicious without any unnecessary seasoning—real, juicy meat, buttery soft bread and cheese that melts in the most poetic way. There are so many options to suit all tastes, even the most discerning palate.

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From main courses, the Po'Boys sampler is a great dish to try all the smoked meats that are all bite-sized and hearty.

An "anthem" for gourmets. There is also a wide variety of beers from small breweries. Here, you will also find their own all-brewed beer that has a fine, light taste and goes with everything.

I will return again and again when I need food to caress my soul and not think about calories.

Address: Agatharchou 12 and Lepeniotou, Tel : 2103234672

Julie Agoraki is a columnist for Travel

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