Avlós Greek Cuisine, Phoenixville, PA – A Review

by artfuldiner on April 16, 2020

in Artful Diner Review, Breaking News, Pennsylvania, Review, Wining and Dining

Avlós Greek Cuisine

258 Bridge Street

Phoenixville, Pennsylvania

(610) 455-4110


Tucked away in the space that was Restaurant Majolica for over a decade, Avlós is the latest addition to Phoenixville’s burgeoning restaurant scene… Unfortunately, just after its debut, Avlós had to close because of the restrictions imposed as a result of the Coronavirus. Hopefully, when the restrictions are lifted, the restaurant will be reopened.

The interior is minimalist but attractive, boasting the warmth of an exposed brick wall and sea of white tablecloths. And, like its predecessor, the restaurant is also BYOB. The cuisine here isn’t the best Greek food it has ever been my pleasure to ingest; but it is certainly authentic, well prepared & presented, and generally quite good.

Avlos - Melitzanosalata w PitaThe festivities begin with a complimentary basket of pita bread… And it’s certainly no accident that these diminutive triangles are just perfect for dipping into the kitchen’s various sauces and starters. Tzatziki is undoubtedly the most familiar, a soothing combo of strained Greek yogurt mixed with cucumber, dill, garlic, salt, olive oil, and tincture of lemon juice. Just right for setting up your appetite… As is the Melitzanosalata (pictured), a simple but tasty dish of mashed roasted eggplant, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice. And although the word is literally translated as “eggplant salad,” here it is presented as a dip/spread.

Avlos - Soutzoukia SmirneikaAnother “must try” item among the mezze (small dishes) is the Dakos. This is barley rusk (double-baked bread) drizzled with olive oil and topped with grated/crushed tomatoes, feta cheese, capers, and Greek oregano. Think of it as bruschetta Greek-style and you won’t be far off the mark. An excellent starter. But even more spectacular is the Soutzoukia Smirneika (pictured), Smyrna meatballs that were first brought to Greece by refugees from Asia Minor. These are superlatively seasoned with cumin & garlic, and then served up with tomato sauce and splash of Greek yogurt.

Avlos - Grilled VegetablesThe Grilled Vegetables were something of a mixed bag. The slices of eggplant and zucchini were perfectly cooked and nicely seasoned. Unfortunately, the scallions only succeeded in adding a touch of color. Improperly trimmed, they were as fibrous and tasty as rubber bands.

The two salads listed on the restaurant’s menu strike me as something of an anomaly. The Kritiki, a citrus salad, is usually comprised of watercress and orange segments, but these elements are not mentioned in the description. The Politiki is a Greek cabbage salad adorned with tomato, cucumber, carrot, red onion, parsley, and ladolemono, a dressing of lemon and olive oil. I find it rather odd, however, that apparently Avlós does not serve Horiatiki Salata, the classic Greek salad made with tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, feta cheese, olives and typically seasoned with salt & oregano and dressed with olive oil. I always considered this item to be de rigueur in all Greek establishments… Perhaps it is occasionally offered as a special. Still, rather strange.

But there was nothing the least bit odd about the special soup of the evening. Avgolemono  (pictured), a mainstay of Greek cookery, is a chicken and rice soup flavored and thickened with egg yolks and touch of lemon just before serving. The end result was a beautifully textured, silky-smooth potpourri with a delicious lemony finish. A benchmark effort.

Avlos - MoussakaEntree-wise, the ultimate test of a Greek kitchen, in my opinion, is the Moussaka; and Avlós passes with flying colors. Their rendition (pictured) features eggplant, potatoes, and a lamb meat sauce topped with a thin layer of béchamel sauce and is presented as an individual casserole… And, I should hasten to add, the kitchen is to be thoroughly commended for not overdoing the béchamel. This is a lavishly rich sauce; and, if too enthusiastically applied, has been known to wreak havoc. In this case, less is definitely more.

Avlos - Kota StifadoMy dining partners’ Kota Stifado (pictured) was also first-rate. Stifado generally refers to a type of Greek stew that is prepared with onions and tomatoes. In this instance, the dish incorporates kota, chicken; and the moist boneless breast is combined with pearl onions, pasta, fresh tomato sauce, and sprinkling of thyme. This is a relatively simple dish, but one that works marvelously well.

Other main courses range from Amanitus Giouvetsi, a one-pot traditional Greek casserole, to street-wise Souvlaki – pork skewers served with lemon potatoes, tzatziki, onion, and pita – to charred Lamb Chops with herb-scented bulgur. There is also Psari, a fish of the day… the ubiquitous branzino the night of our visit.

Avlos - GalaktobourekoAs for desserts… Interestingly enough, Baklava, that classic Greek dessert, was conspicuous by its absence. Kadaife, however, a baklava-like denouement – shredded dough filled with chopped nuts and cinnamon and topped with a honey/sugar syrup – was present and accounted for and quite good. The nod as my favorite Greek sweet ending, however, would undoubtedly go to the Galaktoboureko (pictured), a rich, creamy semolina custard in filo coated with sweet syrup (pictured). Delightfully decadent and loaded with calories… but simply impossible to resist. Also available is the Kormos Chocolate Mosaic, a chocolate biscuit dessert in the shape of a tree log, which we found rather dry and uninteresting.

There is no question that Avlós makes a welcome addition to the growing ethnic diversity of the Phoenixville dining scene. The restaurant still has a few kinks to work out; but, given its newness, that is certainly understandable.

The food is of excellent quality, the price is right, the welcome is warm, and the service is enthusiastic and knowledgeable… Just don’t forget to BYOB.

 Bon Appétit!

Be Safe


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