Greek food too good to Nissi

Neil Littman visits a busy Greek restaurant in Palmers Green

Chicken souvlaki
Chicken souvlaki

Nissi is a modern Greek restaurant overlooking Broomfield Park in Palmers Green.

Although only open five days a week, they are very busy most days, and deservedly so as I discovered one Sunday evening. We had decided to eat early at 6pm, which was just as well as on Sundays the kitchen takes last orders at 6.30pm and closes around 8pm.

First impressions were good from the smell of the food being prepared in the open-plan kitchen. The Greek diet is generally one of the healthiest around, which Nissi makes a focus of its menu – good ingredients simply prepared and served.

The long dining room is one of the noisiest I have ever encountered. Some acoustic dampening would have helped, but it also contributed to the atmosphere which I would describe as “on holiday abroad without leaving the country”.

The Nissi website features an extensive gallery of photos of many of the dishes served, which from our visit looked exactly like what was on offer – as you might hope! We ordered Keo beers and shared starters of spanakopita (spinach, feta filo parcels) and taramosalata with good quality pitta bread.

Cod roe may be available in almost any supermarket in the land, but the experience of eating Nissi’s homemade version is something else. The colour is different for a start, untainted with food colouring, and the taste is as close as you will get to the Mediterranean.

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The filo parcels were a Gregg Wallace moment, as he might have said “packed with big flavours” of fresh herbs and feta. Main courses for both of us were chicken souvlaki with sides of hand-cut chips (outstanding) and a Greek (what else?) salad. I ended up with enough for my lunch the day after.

Meanwhile, plates of grilled fish and octopus were whizzing past us. We were too full for dessert but, despite this, complimentary ice cream to share arrived and we also ordered coffee.

I have since spoken to several friends who rate this place very highly and say it is their favourite Greek restaurant in the area. I am also grateful I didn’t spot the meze for two (ten dishes to share) at £10 each or we might not have made it as far as the main courses!

The price for two was £66 (not including service, which was notably good). I left Nissi slightly deafened, but impressed.

Nissi can be found at 62 Aldermans Hill, Palmers Green N13 4PP and is open Wednesday to Friday, 12pm-3pm and 5pm-10.30pm, Saturday 1pm-10.30pm, and Sunday 1pm-8pm. Booking is essential:
020 8882 3170
Visit nissirestaurant.co.uk

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