lekkerwijn Posted February 9, 2014 Share Posted February 9, 2014 For the past couple of weeks Todd Kliman has had Trapezaria on his list of "where I am eating now". This was intriguing since it was listed next to Rose's Luxury and otherwise we'd heard nothing about the place. So we made a reservation via Opentable for Saturday night. Kliman's commentary that this is Greek food of a bygone era is pretty spot on. The food reminded me of the delicious goodies my college roommate's Greek grandmother (whose family had owned a South Jersey diner) used to send us. You can tell it is a family run place. The service was friendly and attentive and once our waitress took our order (it took her a few minutes to get to us) the food came out in rapid fire. Meze is a bit of a misnomer- you get gigantic portions of Greek comfort food served family style. Prices are already reasonable, but given the large portion sizes this place is headed for legendary cheap eats status. We were welcomed to the table with pita, olives, and what I think was a scoop of the fava dip. The pita is served warm but is what I would think of as classic Greek diner. It isn't anything special but it is also just a vehicle for shoveling dips. The fava dip was pretty awesome. It had a whopping umami to it that makes me think it either wasn't vegetarian (maybe made with chicken fat) or they used a chicken flavored boullion/MSG in it. I'm not opposed to that trick- I do it with beef flavored MSG in a vegetarian mock chopped liver that I make- but a fair warning to those wishing to avoid MSG. I ordered the Mount Olympus cocktail (House Infused Cucumber Vodka, Fresh Lime Juice & Ginger, Infused Simple Syrup) which was tasty but sweeter than I would prefer. My husband got a Greek beer which was described by our waitress as "Blonde like you, not dark like us" as she pointed to me and herself. We started with the Trio of Dips opting for the Melitzanosalte (Puree of roasted eggplant, parsley, garlic, olive oil & vinegar), Tyrokafafteri (a delightful spread of feta cheese, roasted red pepper, olive oil & thyme), and Taramosalata (Mashed Potato, red caviar, olive oil & fresh lemon juice). Normally we would have gotten the Hummus but we just got back from a trip to Israel and are totally hummus-ed out right now. All three were very good, although the Fava put them all to shame. Next we got Iman Baldi ("House Specialty" Baked Eggplant topped with caramelized onions, tomato, mint,Parsley, golden raisins & pine nuts) which along with the Htapodi Skaras (Grilled octopus with olive oil, lemon & oregano) were the two best things we had all night. The eggplant is served cold and had a great sweet and sour balance. For reference- you get half a stuff eggplant for $7 and it is easily a meal in and of itself. The octopus is served as four large tentacles,that were so soft and creamy that they must have been stewed before being finished on the grill giving the ends some crunch and the meat rich smokiness. They're served warm with just a half a lemon. Also, easily an entrée in and of itself. Then we shared the "entrée" Trapazaria Sampler (Spanakopita, Moussakas, Dolmades Avgolemono, & Arni Psito Served With stewed green beans). It seemed like a good way to try a wide swath of the menu and it was. Except instead of stewed green beans it was stewed zucchini and it also included Pastitsio. They serve you a platter that is so piled high with a mess of food it looks like you've just walked through the buffet at the local Greek Orthodox Church Supper. Our least favorite thing on there was the roasted leg of lamb- it was tender but very gamey. My favorite was the Dolmades and the Moussaka. Some of the items on the plate weren't as warm as we might have liked them and you could tell they were reheated, but everything tasted really good- homey good- like your college roommate's Yaya would send you. Then because we are crazy and the desserts coming out of the kitchen looked beautiful we also got the Galactoboureko (Custard Semolina Cream Wrapped in Phyllo Dough, Kept Moist in our Homemade Honey Syrup). You get two nice sized pastries; ours were still warm from the oven, along with some big chunks of cantaloupe. I'd say it was good not great. Kliman described it as fudge like. That wouldn't describe what we had. Next time I think I'd get the Baklava or the yogurt. We over-ordered for two people. With tax, tip it came to just under $100. They do a $40 per person 20 meze "price fixe" which I think would be a very good way to explore their big menu. We watched some gorgeous whole fish, roasted chicken and lamb shank coming out of the kitchen that we would like to try next time. Overall, I'd say Trapezaria will likely end up on our regular rotation. The food isn't refined and it isn't gourmet. It is just wholesome comfort food at a very reasonable price point with a friendly atmosphere. I can see this place becoming very popular. Just make a reservation for a weekend night. The place was packed at 8 pm. There was a wait for tables and lots of people eating and drinking at the bar. 5 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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