Botrini’s had already begun to show a marked improvement on all levels since last winter. Indeed, the restaurant has – as expected – found its stride and strikes a nice balance between the friendlier and more accessible concept of an interesting but more ‘day-to-day’ venue which Botrini wanted to offer diners in Athens and that of the outstanding Etrusco on Corfu, which remains his ‘flagship’.
The service has found its feet, consigning whatever ‘childhood’ blunders firmly to the past. Prices have been kept at very reasonable levels (first courses and pasta €17, main courses €27), while the €40 menu with very agreeable wine produced for the restaurant by Antonopoulos Vineyards is a real bargain!
But the progress does not stop here. The teething problems with the cuisine have also been overcome and it now bears the familiar hallmark of excellence to which Ettore Botrini has accustomed us all these years. His dishes, from the most ‘modest’ to the most imaginative and creative, are executed immaculately. I would like to dwell a moment on the amazing risotto. A monument to Greek-Italian fusion and at the same time a creation so typical of Ettore. You hear the ingredients and are puzzled, you smile, you wonder how they can all possibly come together. But when you taste it, you feel perfectly comfortable, like you are eating the most normal dish in the world! And it is precisely this that makes Botrini such an outstanding chef, namely his mastery and ability to create harmony. This particular risotto is blended with feta and a little olive oil and finished with staka (a type of roux). It also has Greek coffee powder, cardamom and water melon! Exquisite! Contrasting with the complexity of this dish, the equally delicious beetroot features variations and games of texture with basically one ingredient! The octopus also impressed me. Lightly boiled, it is cut thinly like carpaccio. These thin slices are then used to reconstruct the tentacle, stuffed with different seafood and mustard, to create yet another divine dish. Moving on to the main courses, I must stress the excellence of their technical execution, particularly since this was the negative comment I had made the previous time. I wrote last year that all these techniques and ideas are meaningless if the dish itself lacks the basics. But whoever now tries the incredible roast chicken with aromatic herbs and mushroom pesto or the juicy sea bass with eggplant mousse, Florina red pepper extract and lemon air, will not fail to be impressed by the exceptional culinary technique and harmony of taste.
Without a doubt, Botrini’s is among the top five or six restaurants in Athens at the present time. And of those five or six, it is probably the most affordable and the most relaxed.
- Phone: (+30210) 6857324
- Address: 24B Vas. Georgiou B' Str., Halandri , Athens,
- Website: -
- Open: Daily, except Sunday evening
- Price per person (€)*: €40-75 per person
- * we do our best to reflect the actual price range per-person of a full meal including first and main courses, desert, water and half a bottle of wine or one beer depending on the type of restaurant.
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