A lot of things can happen in three decades. Technology changes, the city's landscape changes, and restaurants come and go. But not Parea Taverna. Since 1993 this Greek restaurant has served up a storm from its humble kitchen at the top of Corlette Drive in Illovo. Its success? Well, that can be pinned down to staying true to tradition. Just like the tavernas found in the old country, Parea brags with minimal decor, sticking to the classic white painted walls with blue accents. Here there's no need to fuss about outlandish, exotic decor - the food does all the talking.
Belly Dancing And Breaking Plates
We've all wanted to smash plates on the floor and dance all over them! At Parea this is tradition. From 20:30 on Fridays and Saturdays, the restaurant turns into a symposium with some Greek dancing, belly-dancers and smashing crockery. We would recommend that if you're aiming for a relaxed evening of dinner and drinks, come earlier.
A Menu That Could Launch A Thousand Ships
The menu sings siren songs that will cause Adonis to fall from the heavens. It's evident that the food at Parea is not trying to be Greek or Mediterranean - it IS those things. From the dolmades wrapped in blanched grape leaves to the lamb kleftiko complete with kefalotyri, this is the real deal.
Above and beyond the deliciously traditional Greek cuisine, we implore that you read through the Parea Burgers section. The kitchen has taken the initiative to fuse classic Greek ingredients with good old burger building techniques. Star items here include the Tzatziki burger topped with a pure beef patty and tzatziki, and the falafel burger served with hummus (vegetarians will love this one for sure). We recommend that you ask the waiter to serve your burger on pita bread.
Seeing as it is a Greek hangout, there is meze a-plenty! Vegetarians are in luck as Parea offers a range of veggie platters stuffed with kalamata olives, salads, dips and fried cheese.
If there is one thing that simply impressed us is the exciting wine list. Filled to the brim with local and European wine producers, the menu is fit for any occasion. On top of that Parea also stocks all the usual suspects when it comes to ciders, beer, and spirits.
Looking at the dessert menu is similar to staring at an amber sunset across the Aegean Sea. Bragging with entries such as homemade baklava and grilled halva, you know there are no wrong choices in Parea's sweet section. Our recommendation? All of it... with an extra serving of rizgalo - a rice pudding sprinkled with cinnamon served either hot or cold.
Address: 3 Corlett Dr, Illovo
Phone: +27 11 788 8785