Pride of Mediterranean Cuisine
say the Greek were ages ahead of their time, that their
thoughts and teachings were the embodiment of civilisation.
The Greek mythologies boasted gods like the Titans while
history brought out legends like Aristotle and Socrates.
But probably the most important aspect behind everything
was what fuelled all these great myths and minds -- the
heavenly Greek cuisine.
life it's not a matter of how much you know, what's important
is how little you allow yourself to forget," (Homero
Expósito, 1918-87). And rarely does one forget the
saporous texture of a Greek dish. Located on the fourth
floor of R.M. Centre (above Agora Super Shop) in between
Gulshan 1 and 2, Casa Greek boasts to be the pioneer of
the Greek meal here in Bangladesh. As one enters the restaurant,
the Greek columns give the place a natural aura. Here one
finds the earthy marrying of aroma and flavour, the crispy
tang of traditional seasonings and the freshest ingredients.
Such is the essence of Greek cuisine.
two people behind this restaurant are Mashiur Rahman Shimu
and Zahidur Rahman -- close friends, partners in business
and equally in love with the Greek way of dining. "We
both used to work in a Greek Restaurant in Montreal. Shimu,
who was a chef there, used to fill in the Saturday night
slot catering to more than five hundred people," says
Rahman. "We later bought the same franchise."
Though the duo wanted to open a Greek restaurant here six
years back, the response was not so encouraging. They have
finally braved into the market and have gone all the way,
having their own Greek haven here in Dhaka. "We feel
very close to this place as we have been into the Greek
style for a long time now."
of the items that are used are brought in from other countries.
The feta cheese and olives, both essential ingredients in
most of the Greek dishes, are all imported to give that
much needed authenticity. Another important item is the
iceberg lettuce. "We specially grow this vegetable
here as it is not available in our local market," says
Greek has made sure that you have the complete Greek meal,
starting with Tzatziki, a creamy Greek yoghurt
served with cucumber, tomatoes and a special garlic mix.
Feta Cheese and Olives are regulars on the Greek
plate. There is also a tasty assortment of Shrimp Cocktails,
with cabbages, mayonnaise and the exquisite sauce giving
it 'just the right' shrimp blend. There is also a blend
of salads starting with Caesar Salad, made fresh
and crispy with the iceberg lettuce. One can also try the
Supreme Chicken Salad, a tender charcoal chicken
breast, and the Supreme Salmon Salad, charcoal
salmon fillet, both served on a bed of Caesar salad. If
one is in an experimenting mood, one can always go for the
Pikilia Delux, a plate of assorted appetisers including
feta cheese, tzatziki, spinach pie, sweet red pepper and
a blend of crab salad. There is also Soup of the Day,
which the chef conjures up and it is usually a mouth-watering
treat. Other vegetarian dishes include Moussaka,
a dish that is common to Greek households consisting of
eggplant and minced meat and Spankoptia, a special
mixture of spinach.
onto more serious fillers, there are many chicken dishes
starting with the Chicken Breast, tenderly done
with oregano and the Chicken Brochette with sautéed
or Butterfly Shrimps is always a superb filler. It
has a good blend of items including the famous Greek potatoes
and a special sauce that brings out all the flavours in
one's mouth. The Souvlaki contains skewers of grilled
beef fillet with herbs and comes with Greek potatoes, Greek
rice and a salad serving. One can also go for the Shish-Kabab
"a la Greek" a renowned dish that is sure
to hit the right spot. Another dish that takes the spotlight
is the Lamb Chop, charcoal broiled lamb chops served
with Caesar salad and potatoes. A lemon on the side serves
to bring out the juice in the meat. The Fillet Mignon,
served with the special sauce is also quite popular. There
is also a host of imported steaks from all over the globe,
and their collection of aquatic dishes include the Sea
Food Brochette, a succulent sea treat with sea sole
scallop and shrimps. The Lobster Thermidor is cooked
with Shallots-Béchamel and is garnished in a creamy
sauce adding that distinct flavour.
conclude the meal, there are desserts such as Baklava,
a baked mix of pastry, chopped nuts and honey, Cheese
Cake, Brownie and Ice-cream. How you add that
finishing touch to your day is totally up to you.
Set Lunch Menu offer that starts at Tk.275 up has also been
introduced. If you order a main dish, you will get complimentary
soup and a tantalising dessert with the meal. "Our
guests are trying our food and they are appreciating it,"
says a proud Zahidur Rahman. "We are not only having
new customers everyday but customers who revisit and bring
in their friends and family as well."
restauranteur partners are also engaged in an architecture
business. Nextus, an Interior Designing Company, is the
result of their hard work and dedication in this field.
"The interior decorating at Casa Greek is totally done
by us. We had our own people working to recreate the Greek
ambiance at Casa Greek," concludes Rahman. Both are
family men, having a daughter and son each and they still
manage to squeeze in enough time out of their hectic daily
life for their family.
Straul, the High Commissioner of Canada, inaugurated this
restaurant on March 7, 2005. Also present on the occasion
were Albarto Kaferi, First Counsellor and Delegation of
the European Commission and Andrias Will, Executive Chef,
Redisun Group of Hotel. The food at Casa Greek, which is
open from noon to midnight, is a paean to the uncharted
glories of local Greek cuisine. As one follows the Greek
journey, food, history and culture seem to be intertwined
since time immemorial, making Casa Greek a nirvana for all
(R) thedailystar.net 2005