Spondi – top notch cuisine in Greece
When you talk about haute cuisine restaurants in Greece, Spondi is the first name that comes to mind.
Housed in an aristocratic nineteenth-century town house with a stone courtyard, Spondi (which in Greek means libation), during the summer nights, welcomes its customers "al fresco", in a chic decorated courtyard. When the weather turns colder, the dining room is transfered into a well lit room, where stone arches and stone walls create a warm, cosy yet glamorous atmosphere. Soft ambient music, well trained and smartly dressed waiters and neatly set up tables with linen, crystal glasses and porcelain plates make this the place to go for a brilliant dinner.
Spondi’s Head Chef Arnaud Bignon, French born and classically trained, after his studies and first experiences in Parisian restaurants moved to Greece with his family to be Spondi’s Head Chef. As one could easily tell by just looking at the menu, Arnaud Bignon insisted on French centred flavours and he creates top cuisine delicacies that set the pace for the Greek gourmet scene. While he is traditionally French trained he is still capable of combining French and contemporary techniques with a molecular touch to bring the best out of the ingredients. Although this was not the most cutting edge restaurant in Greece where you could have theatrical dinner or experience the true possibilities of molecular gastronomy, it was far from sure that Bignon’s dishes would satisfy your sophisticated tastes. Spondi’s creations are characterised by impeccable execution and plethora of scents, tastes, textures and colours coming from different ingredients all mixed up in the same dish, creating a balanced ensemble which make your taste buds go crazy.
Arnaud Bignon used the very best of gourmet ingredients and employed his inspiration and creativity to present each month a four dish menu with seasonal ingredients apart from the “discovery menu” and the à la carte choices. Perfect examples of his talent and the way Bignon feels about food are the amuse bouche of mouth-watering foie gras with sweet spices and caramel, the crunchy shrimp with slightly acidic pergamonto and the refreshing, light and airy meringue with cucumber juice and wasabi.
Additionally, Bignon proved that he feels comfortable with many heterogeneous ingredients. In his dish of juicy cod cooked à la minute, with a thick and delicious froth of potato, loaded with savoury flavours of haddock and veal juice, garnished with a gently spicy and herbaceous chive, Spondi’s Head Chef combined brilliantly the so different fish and meat. Same thing in the dish of the light scallop served with crunchy quinoa, refreshing mint, sweetish red pepper ketchup and slightly bitter grapefruit where all the ingredients work harmoniously.
When you visit Spondi you should order the discovery menu to have a tasty tour of Bignon's skill and talent. The perfectly cooked, moist cod served with a savoury and thick broth of basmati rice with the green zebra tomato and herbs and the veal medallion, coated with crunchy and herbaceous Parma ham with valerian, served with slightly scorched ravioli of chard and gorgonzola will enthuse you.
Just before the dessert, a variety of more than fifteen delicious cheeses to choose from. Various types of milk and different maturing and preserving methods give a very interesting collection of top French cheeses that help you change your taste. And for dessert, the apricot ice cream, with the orange sorbet served on top of roasted walnuts, in a sweet and sourish dish and the guanaja chocolate on top of a biscuit sablé served with lemon “fillets” that completed the dinner.
Arnaud Bignon moved to London in February 2012 and left his position to Michel del Burgo. Spondi’s new Head Chef was previously an associate of Joël Robuchon. French and highly experienced, he came to Greece from Hong Kong where he was the Head Chef of L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon. His qualifications and awards evidence that his coming to Greece is rightly anticipated and create high standards for fantastic performances.
Moreover, Spondi is considered to have the best and widest restaurant wine list in Greece and its award winning sommeliers can help you choose the best wine to match your food. Among the offered choices are some of the best Greek white or red wines and the very best of the international ones. The proposed Greek wines for the menu accompany the dishes exquisitely and highlight the flavours and the aromas of each and every one of them.
So next time you are in Athens and you feel like treating yourself, wear your smart suit, book a table at Spondi and take a taxi ride there (it is a bit tricky to find it even for the Athenians) and experience a top class meal with great wines.
Restaurant Spondi scored 80 points of 100 points in our rating system. View our Top 60 of the world. Back to the reviews.
Pyrronos street 5
Phone: +30 210 75 64 021