You're probably wondering just what a tsipourádiko is. Well, when you go to Vólos, a lively port city just 3 hours north of Athens, you'll run into 600(!) of them - small, traditional taverns that offer tsípouro, a strong grape-distilled spirit with 45% alcohol by volume.
What's the best thing about these taverns? You don't order food! You just order your tsípouro and you'll start seeing little plates with greek mezédes, mostly seafood, coming to your table. The more you drink, the more food they bring you! The cook will offer up the freshest and most delicious dishes you'll have ever tasted, like grilled octopus or sardines, roasted red peppers, patzarosálata (a refreshing dip with beets, yogurt, garlic, & olive oil), tirokafterí (a spicy féta dip), pickled cabbage, krítamo (sea fennel), olives, and warm toasted bread drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and oregano.
How's that for a fun way to pass the time while you wait for the next ferry boat to the Sporades Islands?! Vólos is the jumping off point for Skiáthos, Skópelos & Alónissos (did you see our May 18th Weekly Greek Postcard on this island with it's maritime preserve?!). It's definitely worth spending at least a night in this port city to enjoy the tsipourádika and the evening promenade along the waterfront. You'll experience an authentically Greek slice of summer life, with vendors selling roasted corn on the cob, kids racing around on their bikes & scooters, and families & friends strolling to enjoy the cool breezes.
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