I’m not very excited about the visit of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) to Greece. The blood from the dismemberment of the journalist Khashoggi’s body cannot be washed away so quickly – if ever.
You will tell me: the Crown Prince has gone to Turkey…Biden visited him…he went to France on Thursday…
Anyway, that’s not my topic today. My issue is another, also serious one: The food served at the dinner given for the Crown Prince by the Prime Minister at the restaurant of the Acropolis Museum (full disclosure: I am a member of its Board of Directors) overlooking the Acropolis.
It was something unique.
What was presented to him? Cretan cuisine, with specialties of his late mother, Marika Mitsotakis. And they were actually prepared by a Cretan cook. The guests enjoyed:
Gamopilafo, egg-lemon dolmades with minced meat, rice and aromatic cherry tomatoes with basil, mizithra in vinaigrette, carob dakos, cherry tomatoes, purslane and feta cheese.
For the main course there was Cretan lamb roasted with potatoes followed by kataifi with mastic cream and rose ice cream for dessert. (Source: tovima.gr).
I would have been just as excited if the cuisine chosen was from another part of Greece.
The bottom line is that Greek cuisine was honored. Our kitchen. This is what we have, this is what we offer. And it’s not bad at all – no, seriously, it is considered as one of the best in the world.
And yet, in spite of all this, until now it has not been properly honored. Why is it that in Greece in such settings we usually offer, for example, French, Italian, Chinese, etc. and not Greek cuisine? What is the logic?
It was about time. Let’s hope that this correct choice of the Prime Minister will start a trend in restaurants, hotels, and everywhere. The results will be spectacular: And foreign visitors will go crazy – they don’t go to Greece to eat Italian food… And the agricultural economy and animal husbandry industry will flourish.
No wine was served because the crown prince doesn’t – publicly? – drink liquor. If he were drinking I believe they would have only offered ouzo and Greek wines.