"Come and find us in Bouboulina street, at the port, we changed address!" said Mr. Costas to me on the phone, the owner of the legendary tavern of Nafplio "Ta Fanaria". So here I am now, I cross the quay looking at the moored sailboats, the clump of palm trees, the beauty of this blessed place. From afar I see Mr. Costas, welcoming passers-by as always, with a cordial good evening and a brief reference to the food of the day. He did the same for so many years in Staikopoulou str.; he does exactly the same here, at number 69 of Bouboulina str., where Fanaria moved from May 2021.
I sit at one of the tables next to the pedestrian road, I enjoy my delicacies and my wine and I think, that the change of address is the only change that took place in this 39-year-old tavern. The quality, the taste, the Greek flavors, the hospitality, the people, the prices, everything has remained the same, unchanged, as we Greeks know, but also the countless foreign guests-friends.
In blue Greek color
The ground floor of the restored mansion has been painted in a bright blue, which shouts Greece and with its three high doors looks like a painting by Theofilos. To the right and left of the main entrance, two abacus boards whet your appetite with their writings: "Taverna Ta Fanaria since 1980. Food: lamb bogana / fricassee, rabbit stew, braised beef" on the left, "Traditional Greek cuisine and coal grilled meat" on the right. How to enclose the history of so many years in two paintings?...
As time goes by, in the large outdoor space the tables set with green and blue tablecloths are filled with groups of friends, families, Greeks and many foreigners. Fanaria are loved by tourists and in fact, there are many who return here after 20 and 30 years, to find again Mr. Costa, his delicacies and stories.
Katia Bandana's wooden paintings with the open doors and the wreaths of May, but also the particular painting with the two men eating and drinking at a table, give the space a touch of art -after all, there are many artists who frequent here.
Mom's cooked food
Everyone who has dined at Fanaria, has something to say about its cooked, delicious mommy dishes! I enter the interior of the tavern, dressed in stone and wood and proceed to the kitchen, the kingdom of Mrs. Elizabeth, the wife of Mr. Costas, who creates all these unforgettable flavors.
She hasty wipes her hands on the apron and, smiling and heartily, shows me what she has prepared for today: delicious "soutzoukakia" meat rolls, stuffed tomatoes and peppers ('gemista"), artichokes, baked lamb, moussaka, stuffed "papoutsaki" eggplants, "dolma" bites (stuffed vine leaves with rice and herbs -also with lemon sauce "yalanji") -ah, these ones you should definitely try! Her pasticcio is also excellent, the very tender baked pork and, of course, the baked lamb-fricassee, which drives the French crazy!
Mr. Costas is responsible for the grilled dishes, so you know who to thank, when you choose a burger, a beef or pork steak, lamb ribs, pork and chicken skewer, grilled chicken or grilled liver.
If the view of the sea or the sea breeze whetted your appetite for seafood, in Fanaria you will find a variety of dishes such as: sardines, anchovies, pike, sea bream, shrimp, squid, octopus, tope with garlic sauce (skordalia), cod with garlic sauce (skordalia), swordfish, and shrimp spaghetti. You will accompany your meal with some local wine (or bottled Greek), an ice cold beer, some "tsipouro", and you will complete your meal in the sweetest way, enjoying a "baklava" or a "kadaifi" - total must Greek flavors.
Almost 10 years ago, I asked Mr. Costas how he would describe his taverna in one word. I expected him to say "famous", "dear", "cozy", but he without a second thought had said "Popular". Yes, Fanaria is the authentic, honest, popular tavern, which unites yesterday with today and sitting there, in a typical taverna chair, fills your palate, your mind and your soul with Greece.
Did you know that?
If you are vegan or vegetarian, eating here will satisfy you, since you will find in the menu delicious dishes, such as cooked green beans in tomato sauce, "briam" oven vegetables, oily cooked vegetables, lentil soup, vegetable soup.
The prices are tavern prices, very affordable for every pocket.
If you are preparing your wedding or the baptism of your child and you want to please and tastefully satisfy your few special guests, Fanaria is the ideal place.
Loyal customers at Fanaria are many people of the theater, actors, singers, many writers, politicians, while some of them were: Melina Mercouri, Thanassis Veggos, Eugenios Spatharis, Antonis Samaras, Charis Alexiou, George Dalaras, Terry Savvalas, Stelios Mainas, Katia Dandoulaki, Panos Mouzourakis..
Take-away, Dessert, WiFi
Greek traditional kitchen
Everyday, from 09:30 until 00:30 in the morning
Kitchen stops at 23:15