Greek restaurants in the area are few and far between, so Neméa Greek Taverna is a welcome addition to Mamaroneck.
Greek restaurants in the area are few and far between, so Neméa Greek Taverna is a welcome addition to Mamaroneck. The fact that the hummus is creamy, the spanakopita flaky, and all the desserts are homemade is icing on the baklava.
Owners and brothers George and Niko Kringas opened their bona fide Greek restaurant at 599 E. Boston Post Road last month. Co-owners Spiro Chagares of Artee’s Steak and Seafood in City Island, and the Skeadas family, formerly of Mighty Joe Young in Hartsdale, have joined the Kringas brothers in their first venture. As the manager, Niko provides traditional Greek hospitality at the front of the house, while George, the executive chef, brings his mother’s authentic recipes to the table.
Having grown up around food, cooking alongside his mother, George went on to refine his culinary prowess at the French Culinary Institute. As a boy, Niko’s introduction to the business came by way of his father’s original restaurant in Sleepy Hollow.
Most recently, both brothers honed their skills at Niko’s Taverna, their father’s successful eatery in White Plains. With solid experience in their back pocket and Greek blood running through their veins, the first-generation siblings are confident that Neméa, named for the largest wine region in Greece and their hometown, is poised to reach a whole new clientele.
“We think opening on this side of the county is perfect. It serves Port Chester, Rye, Mamaroneck, Larchmont and New Rochelle more conveniently,” said Niko, who also pointed out the ample parking along Boston Post Road. “Our customers like it because it’s real Greek home cooking. George created a menu that includes my mother’s old recipes and his own trained touches.”
In addition, they pride themselves on using only the “best of the best” meats, fish, and vegetables. George added, “We do everything the hard way, from scratch. If it’s not fresh, it’s not going to the table.”
His signature starters include octopodi sta karvouna, grilled wild Mediterranean octopus; keftethakia, light, pan-fried meatballs; and loukaniko me roka, house-made lamb sausage. Favorite entrees offered are paidakia sta karvouna, grilled baby Colorado lamb chops with fingerling potatoes; kotopoulo sto fourno, organic roasted chicken with leeks; and lavraki, grilled branzino with Mediterranean rice pilaf.
A variety of traditional salads, gyros, souvlaki, and burgers are also available. Neméa’s desserts include sweet and crispy baklava, thin layers of phyllo dough, crumbled walnuts, honey, and cinnamon; karidopita, spongy walnut cake drizzled with syrup; and galaktobouriko, vanilla custard wrapped in layers of delicate phyllo. The restaurant offers a fine list of predominantly Greek wines.
The ambiance is warm, with traditional bouzouki music playing in the background.
Close to their roots, the Kringas family visits Greece every summer. Niko admits, “It takes a good five days to get into their slow pace, and then you become one of them. The problem is that when we get back, it takes awhile to get back to our American pace and everybody at JFK passes you by.” The brothers Kringas have certainly hit their stride at Nemeá Greek Taverna.
Reservations are accepted for parties of five or more. Call 698-6600.
Neméa Greek Taverna is open every day for lunch and dinner.
Greek cuisine is abundantly seasoned with garlic. To the right, find Neméa’s recipe for garlic confit, which may be used for garlic-infused vinaigrettes, as a marinade or as a spread over bread.
By Janice Llanes Fabry