Friday, April 6, 2012

Giorgio's

With over 50 years of combined experience, the Lampros family has spent a lifetime in the restaurant business. From the dining rooms of the most elegant luxury cruise ships to the simplest and most down-to-earth family restaurants, the Lampros family has honed and practiced their profession around the globe. Serving Greek and Italian cuisine, Giorgio's goal is that you don't have to travel (and fight traffic) into the city to experience high quality, freshly prepared, gourmet meals.

Since opening their doors in January of 1999, Giorgio's has grown from a 12 seat deli to a 130 seat full-service restaurant with banquet facilities and catering. They pride themselves on their personal service and friendly family atmosphere. Giorgio's makes special efforts to keep their dishes consistent and the "Specials" just that....special. Keith and I met up with my family for dinner in Montclair, VA who were driving through on their way to Myrtle Beach.  I chose this spot due to it's casual atmosphere, high reviews and convenient location for my family.  We were a group of 8 and were seated in the main dining area, which was already packed with diners.  Connected next door is their large wine bar area called Winestyles.

Our server was great - super attentive all night and patient with our large group.  I did not catch his name, but my family thought he looked like Josh Groban.  We started off ordering drinks - beer for the guys and wine for the ladies.  Keith was happy to see the Greek beer, Mythos, on the menu so he and my cousin ordered that while my dad and uncle stuck to an American IPA called Tommy Knocker.  The menu is quite expansive with pastas, pizza, salads, meats, and seafood.  Keith took the lead and ordered a few appetizers for the table to share choosing some Greek classics that we love.  The fried calamari was light and delicate and not overly cooked at all.  The Greek Sampler consisted of a platter of feta cheese, Kalamata olives, pita bread and tzatziki sauce.  Next, a fresh and piping hot slice of traditional spanakopita stuffed with plenty of spinach.  But the highlight of the starters was the popular "flaming cheese", saganaki.  Keith and I first had this on our honeymoon in Greece.  While the spectacle might be cheesy (pun-intended), the dish is nevertheless fun and tasty and our server did a great fire show table side.

By now we were already filling up but still had either a small salad or soup to tackle before our main entrees came.  The portions of the salads and soups could have been a meal in itself.  Still, the portions of the entrees were more grand and frankly overwhelming.  I ordered one of the specials of the night, chicken breast topped with a grilled portabella mushroom cap and a crab cake.  The crab cake had nice lumps of crab meat and the portabella was delicious, yet the chicken was a tad under lukewarm.  I also was not crazy about the thick white sauce drowning the chicken. Others in the group enjoyed chicken or veal savoia topped with ham and mozzarella cheese; a spicy and garlicky seafood linguine; another special of the night seafood crepes; and a monstrous portion of grilled Greek pork chops.  Most of us barely ate half before surrendering and asking our server to wrap up the rest for us to take home.    All in all, the food and service were decent and the high overturn of tables in the dining room only testified to the great value of Giorgio's.  With the close location to my parents' house, I suspect they will return again to try some of the other great items on the menu such as Veal Parmesan and New Zealand Rack of Lamb.

Total Rating: 3.575
Food: 3.5, Price: 4, Service: 4, Ambience: 3, Accessibility: 3

What I ate:

Fried Calamari
served with marinara sauce

Greek Sampler
feta cheese, Kalamata olives, pita bread and tzatziki sauce

Spanakopita
spinach and feta pie wrapped in phyllo pastry

Saganaki
flaming Kaseri cheese

Greek Salad
with cucumber, tomato, Kalamata olives, feta cheese

Chicken with Portabella and Crab Cake
covered with a creamy white sauce and served with rice

Plus others ate:

New England Clam Chowder

Chicken or Veal Savoia
topped with ham and mozzarella cheese
in a light white wine butter sauce

Seafood Linguine
with sauteed shrimp, scallops, clams and calamari
in a white sauce served with garlic bread

Seafood Crepes
with sauteed shrimp, scallops, clams and calamari
in a white sauce served with rice

Greek Pork Chops 
grilled and topped with a Greek style sauce made with white wine, 
lemon, garlic, oregano, and black pepper
served with potatoes and vegetables


Giorgios on Urbanspoon

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