Yesterday, N and I went to the LA Greek Fest for dinner. I read about it on LAist in the morning, and since it's pretty close to where we live we headed over without knowing much about it. And it turned out to be GREAT!
First off, the place was very organized and extremely well-run. There were tons of working volunteers and all of the signs and lines were super clear, which we really appreciated. When we walked in, I saw a man pass by holding a container of fries topped with grilled mini lamb chops, and I knew I must have them. N got some moussaka (which was okay) and spanikopita (which was REALLY good) and I got my mini chops with tzatziki sauce and fries sprinkled with feta cheese. The chops were more well done than I prefer, but for a big crowd they were cooked very well. And the grilled char on them...so yummy. Our eyes were so big from seeing so much good food we just downed it before I even remembered to take a photo of it all.
The proceeds from the festival benefited the Saint Sophia Cathedral (in the photo above), which made it easier to spend money at. Tom Hanks and his wife were the celebrity hosts for the event--who knew Tom was Greek? There was a lot of music and dancing on stage. Everywhere you walked you'd hear a random, "Opa!!"
I had heard a lot of great things about the loukomathes, which are something like Greek donuts covered with honey. N and I shared a Greek coffee and got our loukomathes topped with cinnamon and chopped walnuts. They were heavenly:
At that point, we were completely stuffed, but I hadn't gotten to try everything I wanted to. So we stopped by the pastry table and got a piece of baklava and a piece of galatobouriko to try later at home. Sadly, the one thing I missed that I really wanted was the saganaki. I love me some flaming salty cheese.
I did try both the baklava and the galatobouriko by now. The baklava was hands-down the best baklava I've ever had! I think all the pastries were cooked by the cathedral volunteers. The baklava had a great homey taste to it, the honey was not overpowering, and the nuts in it were especially caramelized. I think most of the baklava I've had in my life so far has been prepackaged and whatnot...although it's good, it tends to be overly sweet with a strange preservative-y aftertaste to it. I had never had galatobouriko before (filo dough filled with a custard), and it was equally as good.
I love Greek food!