NJ Dining: A Taste of Greece 2.0 (UPDATED)

A Taste of Greece
935 Kinderkamack Road, River Edge NJ

Back in April of 2005 one of the first restaurants that I chose to profile during my 2-year stint as NJ Quick Bite writer was A Taste of Greece, a tiny Greek takeout in River Edge. One of the things I liked about this restaurant was its attention to detail and authenticity in its dishes, choosing to buck the “homogenized” Greek restaurant trend found in most Northern NJ Greek eateries with its real Pork Gyro and use of real imported Greek ingredients.

The original owners moved on two years later. One of them, Vasili Mastrokostas, went on to open Vasili’s Taverna in Teaneck. For a brief period A Taste of Greece was ran by the owner’s children and retained most of its original staff, and was recently sold to a new owner, Themis, a young, friendly, service-oriented and health-obsessed marathon runner. Themis took a rather unattractive, small takeout and put some money into the place, adding nice ceramic tile and other positive aesthetic changes, such as new wooden tables and chairs.

Themis has kept much of the restaurant’s original flavor (including its signature pork gyro) and has added more fresh and healthy Mediterranean dishes such as more grilled seafood plates. I actually think the place is a better restaurant now and is more compatible with my current lifestyle, and along with my other favorite Mediterranean options in the local area, such as Joeyness and Bennies, has now become one of my favorite places to eat well and eat healthier.

A Taste Of Greece on Kinderkamack Road in River Edge, Photo April of 2005.

A Taste of Greece’s new owner, Themis. Themis is extremely accommodating to special requests (such as low-carbing the entrees) and is himself a health and fitness nut.

You too will want A Taste of Greece. Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more.

Themis’s marathon running street creds, which is displayed prominently for all to see.

Here are some of the new healthier-style specials that Themis has introduced since taking over the restaurant.

While the restaurant’s regular menu has remained largely unchanged, he’s also been making a lot of daily specials as well. With a specials menu like this, why bother with the menu?

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

New tilework and furniture, as well warm Mediterranean colors are a vast improvement to the sterile hole-in-the-wall the place used to look like inside.

The display case still has all the goodies that I’m not allowed to eat anymore.

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

Pinto Bean Salad with Feta Cheese (2009)

An appetizer of Greek Gigante beans in a tomato sauce with onions and feta cheese.

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

Greek Lentil Soup with Feta Cheese (2009)

The soups at A Taste of Greece are practically meals in themselves, served in large ceramic crocks. The Avgolegmono soup with chicken and egg really hits the spot on a chilly night.

My vegetable soup with Orzo pasta.

Themis now stocks multi-grain pita bread, baked at the local Toufayan Bakery.

A small plate of grilled Loukanikou sausage, brought in from Astoria, Queens. Similar to a Polish kielbasa, It has a slight orange peel flavor to it.

Rachel went for the swordfish special, prepared in a Mediterranean style.

I went for the stuffed chicken breast with spinach and feta cheese and grilled vegetables. Themis honored my request by giving me extra sauteed spinach and garlic instead of the rice it typically comes with. An excellent dish.

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

Grilled Salmon and Octopus with Greek Salad (2009)

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

Stuffed Peppers with Potatoes (2009). I could just about finish one of the peppers for lunch, they are huge.

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

Kataifi, a popular Greek dessert made from shredded phyllo.

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

Cracking open the Kataifi.

A Taste of Greece, River Edge NJ by you.

I finished off the meal with Greek Coffee, a la Splenda. Now you know why all those Greek men have so much hair on their chest.

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20 Responses to NJ Dining: A Taste of Greece 2.0 (UPDATED)

  1. m1k3k says:

    I ordered from there once, it was amazing. It’s a block from my friend’s house and we decided to grab some one night. I had the Vegetarian Mousaka. It was TASTY!!!

  2. Joan says:

    Rachel looks great in that photo. Keep up the good work!

  3. Charles says:

    I have also started eating at A Taste of Greece .
    Everything i have ordered has been fresh and has that personal home cooked meal.
    I can see that Themis is hard working and has been pleasing above and beyond all his customers.
    P.S. Try the rice pudding!

  4. NancyH says:

    I almost never order chicken dishes out. But that Stuffed Chicken looks good enough to eat – and I wouldn’t even have noticed the omission of the rice if you hadn’t mentioned it. Good Greek food is one of the few things we lack in Cleveland [sigh].

  5. Jill says:

    We discovered this place a few weeks ago, after becoming disenchanted with the pricey and overly-salty stuff dished up at It’s Greek To Me. The place must be popular, because prep time is longer than they claim. But the pork gyro is excellent; the lamb shank and orzo is heavenly, even the pita bread is unusually good. I’m definitely going to try that stuffed chicken; it looks fantastic too. Best greek food in Bergen County, if you ask me.

  6. Liz DeRuchie says:

    My daughter and I happened upon this restaurant last night. We both agree it is our new favorite Greek restaurant in Bergen County. We were both absolutely starving. We ordered the traditional dishes but are definitely going back to try the more exciting items on the menu. We started with excellent Greek salads topped with generous amounts of feta cheese. We warned Themis that we were very hungry. We also had the spanokopita which was delicious in an extremely light and flaky phyllo pastry. We both had the lamb platter with lemon fries, again fabulous and plentiful. Then Themis treated us to the rice pudding, creamy and cinammony. Just perfect. As much as we enjoyed the food , we enjoyed the simple and fun atmosphere and Themis’ warmth the minute we walked in the door. I too run and particularly appreciate his attention to healthy but delicious dishes. We are definitely going back and I am going to order from their catering menu for an upcoming party. Three thumbs up!

  7. Berta says:

    My brother and I checked it out last night and were very pleased. We were both only a tad hungry and opted for sandwiches, he a grilled chicken pita, I a gyro. Both tasty and very generous portions of meat in each pita. Great pitas too. Highly recommend it and will try to be hungry for my next visit so I can really get to sampling.

  8. Lester says:

    This place rocks. If you are thinking GREEK food in the BERGEN COUNTY area this the best hands down. I tried all the GREEK/TURKISH restaurants in the BERGEN COUNTY area and they cannot compare to the freshness of A TASTE OF GREECE.

  9. Jim says:

    Home away from home when it comes to cooked meals. Great Food.

  10. Rachel Perlow says:

    Congratulations to Themis, who finished the Boston Marathon on Monday in 3 hours even!

  11. Liz DeRuchie says:

    An absolutely stunning finish in the Boston marathon (with an injury no less) Bravo Themis!!!! (Thanks for lending me the running book! It was a good read) You’ve inspired me to run faster.

    I took two friends there for dinner last night. They raved about the food too. Both had the veggie moussaka. My grilled lamb was outstanding but I missed out on the galaktobouriko (sob). Next time I’ll have to get there earlier or order dessert first.

    Liz DeRuchie

  12. […] A Taste of Greece – Vegetarian Moussaka is hard to find, yet they have it! (River Edge) […]

  13. […] in Fort Lee or Bennies in Englewood for Lebanese style food, or Adonisa’s in Fort Lee or A Taste of Greece in River Edge for […]

  14. nikusjka says:

    Mmmmm looks like a great place!! :))) And photos are amazing!!!!

  15. Patricia says:

    I’d second the thought at saying this is the BEST GREEK FOOD in BERGEN COUNTY! We enjoy the passion and spirit Themis brings to his restaurant, and it’s evident in all of the dishes. We have become regulars and have savored everything from the incredible appetizers (hummus, gigantes, eggplant salad are all winners) to the fresh salads (homemade dressing rocks) and entrees (stuffed peppers, tilapia Mediterranean style, moussaka, baked lamb with orzo, stuffed chicken w/spinach & pita pictured above – portion sizes are enough for a tasty leftover tomorrow) to sweet finishing touches with authentic desserts (kataifi, rice pudding mmmmm good). The informal, casual feel to the dining space is warmed by Themis’ meticulous care for producing high-quality food at reasonable prices. The freshness and deliciousness is unparalleled. Highly recommended!

  16. Liz DeRuchie says:

    My son and I had dinner there again last night. It just gets better and better. I was happy to see the restaurant full of hungry customers, the phone ringing off the hook for take-out and lots of people stopping in to take-out too. Clearly the word is spreading about this exceptional restaurant. We had the Greek meatballs to start: my son had the lamb platter and I had the stuffed peppers and roasted potatoes (my newest favorite). Themis is such a sweetie. The food was divine as always and he always has time to visit our table and chat. On my last two visits he has spoiled us with galaktobourikos for dessert. (my favorite) I’m already planning my next meal, the stuffed chicken. Thank you for a wonderful evening Themis!

  17. Stamatis says:

    Hi everyone,i am stamatis from greece and Themis is my best friend,we grow up together in the same neiberhood (sorry about my english) in piraeus (kaminia) i know him 27 years and i am very proud for
    him and for what he did and for what he is going to do in the future!!!
    These words are not for make a good picture for him,( he has allready one!!!)but is from my bottom of
    my heart!!!He is my” brother” and i want to thank him because he is the meaning of strength and ……
    soul .The best thing is that he does not know that i am going to make these comments hehehehehehehehehe
    and his surprise will be very very big hehehehehehe!!!
    So, my friends keep support him and go to his restaurant because very very soon he is going to open a new
    one maybe very far from your area so you are going to miss the perfect food that he makes for you,so go for
    it……hehehehehehe.My friend thank you because you gave me the privιlege tobe my friend….take care

  18. Vinny Krug says:

    Found this place on the Restaurant.com website. Driven by it many times, but never gave it much thought. Well tonight I grabbed a $25 Gift Certificate for $10, which was a sweet deal, love that site, and checked it out. Food Rawked! Will be back for a return trip soon.

  19. anton marcoussi says:

    concur wholeheartedly with rave reviews, yours and fellow commentors’. FYI, link to Bennies no longer live.

  20. I have been going to A Taste of Greece for about two years. Themis really knows how to deliver on authentic Greek cooking even my young kids like greek food. Themis is like a ray of sunshine, always smiling and you can feel his warmth and sincerity when you speak with him. A Taste of Greece is my choice of quality greek food and recommend for others to visit.

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