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A Hungry Brando Would Have Loved This Stella Even More

Stella! You’ll be yelling that once you eat at Stella’s restaurant in Richmond, VA, singing her praises because the food’s that good and so is the place – with tin ceilings and wooden features.

It’s named for Stella Dikos, mother of Katrina Giavos, one of the operators, along with her husband Johnny, said Virginia Living in a feature on the place which notes that Stella is the soul.

It’s because of her recipes and take on traditional Greek favorites such as spanakopita, pastichio, and souvlaki, which she brought when she came from Trikala, Greece in 1962.

“Nobody knew Greek food when I came here. There was one French and one Italian restaurant,” she said. Not bad for someone not a trained chef but who cooked by instinct.

“She has a great palate. I am amazed to watch her cook.” When visitors come from out of town, they marvel, ‘‘‘there’s a real Stella?’ We set our standards high out of respect for her,” said Katrina.

What’s the secret? – fresh ingredients with the recurring flavors of the Mediterranean: lemon, mint, oregano, thyme, and rosemary. “It’s how you eat in Greece,” said Giavos.

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