The menu at Athens Family Restaurant on Eighth Avenue just grows and grows -- recently added are lamb chops, sea scallops, crab cake, and zucchini omelet. The takeout menu is now an eight-page treasure chest.
The plaki and pastitsio are always good. But lately, there's been so much more to love. Remember the "Seinfeld" episode (The Betrayal) where George finds Clams Casino on the coffeeshop menu? Athens has added cheese-topped dolmathes (in the upper right corner of the photo), with a suzukakia spiced meatball below it. It was hard to decide between and the lamb mytilini (lower left corner), a sweet-and-savory, Zola-esque stew of lamb chunks, onions, walnuts and raisins, and the day's smoked grouper sandwich.
The smoker has been cranked up for days now, in preparation for a Christmas Day smoked meat fest. Prime rib, smoked ham and smoked turkey, plus all the Southern sides, like green beans, sweet potato casserole, corn pudding and more. Dessert includes homemade pumpkin and pecan pies. The feasting starts at 10 a.m. Christmas Day and all night. Make reservations at 383-2848. $16.99 per person, kids under 7 free.
Wow. Brent Rolen, in our weekly Morsels mailing that's on its way to your inbox (if you're signed up) noted Athens was open, but who knew the spread was so opulent? Other Christmas Day options include Sitar, Shalimar, Sperry's, brunch at the Hermitage Hotel's Capitol Grille, and 1808 Grill.
What other good, preferably local, eating spots are open Christmas?