One of the most famous Greek proverbs says that “a good day starts with a good morning”. For those who equate travelling with gastronomic adventures, it could be said that “a good day starts at breakfast”.
In recent years, an increasing number of Greek hotels, from traditional mountain guesthouses to seaside boutique resorts, are replacing standardised breakfast spreads with a sumptuous and nutritious “Greek breakfast”.
On offer you’ll find pure, authentic local ingredients often prepared according to traditional local recipes, elevating not only one’s flavour experience but cultural appreciation too. The hotels we list below offer breakfast that’s so good it’ll become a major highlight of your visit.
Grand Forest Metsovo, Metsovo
The breakfast buffet at Grand Forest Metsovo stands out for its broad variety of traditional flavours and the quality of its ingredients. Daily, they bake fresh bread in a traditional Metsovo wood-fired oven and make fresh croissants and handmade baguettes. Their spread includes varieties of fresh fruit, juices, homemade jams, local pies, regional honey, traditional trahanas (a type of crumbled pasta made from cracked wheat or semolina and sour milk) and rice pudding, “peturu” (noodles in a butter and cheese ‘soup’), coffee, tea and other beverages. The cheese and butter used are sourced from the Tositsa Foundation in Metsovo and other local producers.
Aristi, in Zagorochoria, is one of the most beautiful mountain villages in Greece and an ideal destination for Greek nature lovers. The hotel collaborates with local small producers for high quality products such as Epirus’ galotyri cheese and fresh local butter. It also has a greenhouse in which seasonal fruits and vegetables are grown for a real farm-to-table experience. Since we’re talking about breakfast in the Zagorochoria, it’s inevitable that pies (such as hortopita herb pie and tiropita cheese pie) and homemade trahanas star in the menu, while homemade jams, spoon sweets (fruit cooked and preserved in syrup and served on a small plate with a spoon) and traditional Greek sweets such as sesame and honey pasteli, almond mantolato and halva are also served.
Kyrimai, Gerolimenas Mani
Kyrimai is housed in a historic 19th century building in Gerolimenas, Mani, which has been renovated to combine quaint traditional architecture with modern pleasures. Here you will taste traditional Mani flavours with a modern twist; one of the best honeys of Greece, juicy oranges from Laconia, “lalangia” (crispy dough ribbons), sfela cheese, Mani doughnuts, traditional local rusks made with the area’s famous “protolado” oil, scrambled “kayana” eggs with feta and tomato, sweet and savoury pies and a variety of homemade jams, Alexandros Kirimis, the hotel’s owner, recently told Travel.gr: “Here you will not eat anything that is not local. From the local graviera cheese to our own oil, to Mani sausage, there is nothing in our kitchen that isn’t from here.”
In Ano Pedina, Zagori is Pyrrion Boutique Hotel, which combines a cosy atmosphere with stylish décor. Moreover, the hotel is particularly proud of its breakfast as it has been awarded as “Best Greek Hotel Breakfast” at the Greek Hospitality Awards of 2018. The breakfast, which is dominated by Greek products, includes trahanas with Greek feta cheese, a selection of eight different homemade jams that you can spread on freshly baked sourdough bread, cheese pies and caramelized “avgofetes” (Greek French toast), yoghurt and orange spoon sweet. The traditional chicken pie with homemade Zagori phyllo pastry will keep you full until lunch.
Mylonas guesthouse is housed in a two-storey traditional building that looks like a house. One of its great assets is its ample breakfast, which includes a variety of sweet and savoury flavours. Deli meats, eggs, cheeses, homemade jams, apple pies, fluffy cakes, spoon sweets, pasta flora (a type of jam tart), fresh juices and of course coffee and tea are on offer. Everything is prepared by Ms. Mary, the matriarch behind this family business.
Kritsa Gastronomy Hotel, Portaria
Pelion is a year-round destination and its tasty culinary offerings add to the joy of experiencing the “Land of the Centaurs”. At the small Kritsa Hotel, in the heart of Portaria, the restaurant is one of the region’s gastronomic landmarks, a fact that’s definitely reflected in its breakfast offerings.
Every morning they serve a rich buffet of traditional Pelion flavours, with fresh seasonal fruits and freshly squeezed orange juice, yoghurt and Thessalian cheeses. The seasonal vegetables and fresh eggs are from the owners’ farm and the jams and spoon sweets are all homemade. Don’t miss the apple pies made with the well-known Zagora apples.
This hotel, housed in a former captain’s house, has managed to become known across Greece thanks to its breakfast, which can also be enjoyed by guests staying in other accommodations in the coastal town of Fokida. Owner Chrysoula Papalexi gives her guests the complete hospitality experience by serving her own jams, local cheeses, freshly baked cakes, fresh juices and other delights. In Ganymidis’ oven, pies are baked daily, made with phyllo pastry that is rolled out on the morning they’re served (Roumeli is a region famous for its pies). The walnut pie, orange pie and galaktobureko” (milk cream pie) are made according to traditional recipes. If you like, here you can also take part in Greek cooking classes to learn how to make pies and other traditional recipes.
Villa Vager, Levidi, Arcadia
Villa Vager is located in the centre of Levidi village near Vytina, and has suites with views of the Maenalo fir forest. Its excellent Greek breakfast reveals the gastronomic wealth of the Arcadia region and the Peloponnese in general. The breakfast includes homemade jams, olives and olive oil from local producers, regional cheeses and other dairy products, traditional pies such as cheese and herb pies, free-range and organic eggs, cereals, fresh fruit, juices and fruit salads and seasonal vegetables, mostly locally produced or organic. On chilly days, you will also be able to taste hot traditional soups such as trachana.
Boutique Hotel Skamnos, Arachova
At “Boutique Hotel Skamnos”, breakfast is served until midday and made using local, fresh ingredients. The jams are homemade and of various kinds, with fruit from the trees in the garden and from producers in the surrounding area. The black bread is made with organic wheat and served in the breakfast along with the traditional loaf. Among other things you can enjoy are homemade jams, crepes, local eggs, anthotyro cheese, Parnassos feta cheese, wholemeal rusks, freshly baked herb pies or cheese pies, flower and Parnassos honey and quince spoon sweet with fruit from the hotel’s garden. You’ll also find a spread of at least 20 super foods to combine with fresh yoghurt and fruit.
Rouista Tzoumerka Resort, Voulgareli
Rouista Tzoumerka Resort’s abundant breakfast serves a wide range of pies (milk cream pie, cheese pie, herb pie, potato pie, “plastos” (with wild greens), “kosimiri” (a cheese pie with feta and yellow cheese), trahana pie, rice pie), all made with homemade pastry and vegetables from the hotel’s crop. Also served are scrambled and boiled eggs and omelettes, made with the freshest eggs. For those who want something sweeter, there are lemon, walnut, carrot, orange and chocolate cakes, apple pie, panna cotta, rice pudding and pancakes.
And there’s more. They also serve savoury muffins with feta cheese and sun-dried tomato, and freshly baked bread that’s made in the traditional way and accompanied by homemade jams and honey. The yoghurt and feta come from a producer who produces top-quality dairy products in the area. It’s not by chance that visitors in the area stop by Rouista for breakfast before heading off on big adventures.