At this time of year in Central New York, everyone seems to have a bit of cabin fever, which can often accompany some depression. After so many months of nothing but grey skies, snow and icy cold, with little hope of spring anytime soon, this is the time to give yourself something interesting to do.
A friend and I recently found ourselves in just this position, and to combat the blahs we decided to go out for lunch. We chose a place that specializes in Greek and Mediterranean cuisine: Symeon's in Yorkville, NY.
We were seated at a comfortable booth in a well-lit room right off the open kitchen. Their no-muss vinyl tablecloths are topped with white paper. Each table came complete with a box of crayons for your very own entertainment. Crayons always entertain me, anyway.
The menus are kitchy but fully packed. With so many options and so little time, we stuck to the lunch menu on the back.
Our waitress, Edna, was friendly and efficient. I've been to Symeon's a few times, but always stuck to the souvlaki luncheon plate: a skewer of marinated and grilled lamb or pork over a greek salad with a basket of flatbread. And it's a great meal. This time, however, I was in the mood to experiment.
Lunch began with a typical greek salad: salad greens, crumbled feta, sliced onion, tomato and calamata olives dressed with a fresh vinaigrette. I forgot to take a picture of it, so you'll have to imagine it. Delicious in its simplicity, this is something everyone can love.
Except for the raw onions. I picked them out.
I took Edna's advice for a delicious entree: Melitzanes Yemestes sto Fourno. And that translates to delicious. It was a baked eggplant casserole--tender eggplant (not breaded) layered with simmered vegetables and feta, all topped with a gooey layer of kasseri cheese. Yum!
(Kasseri is sort of like mozzarella in consistency and color, with a mild flavor.)
And what is a good meal without dessert? Well, I didn't have room, but my dining companion did! She ordered the baklava is a traditional and delicious choice.
They even have a sugar-free low-cholesterol version which I've tried before, and it's quite good. I love a restaurant that offers a sugar-free option!
Symeon's has lots of parking, seating, are handicapped accessible, and are always packed around mealtime. Whenever I go to Symeon's for lunch, I make sure to arrive early--no later than 11:30am--if I want a quick seat. Because it will get busy by noon. Count on it.
4941 Commercial Drive, Yorkville, NY 13413
Tel: (315) 736-4074