Evzon83 Parkhurst Road, Courthouse Square, Chelmsford
Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 9 p.m. Closed Mondays
Major credit cards accepted
After we entered this Greek-American restaurant on a recent Friday night, my son-in-law immediately said, "Wow, this reminds me of how my family used to gather in the kitchen for some good home cooking."
His was a point well taken.
The restaurant, in a small shopping center in North Chelmsford, has two small dining areas with an open kitchen in the center. It seats about 60 people. Small tables are covered with vinyl cloths.
Nothing fancy, but a fine dining ambience was never the intention of owners John and Kiki Kalogerakos, both natives of Greece. They emphasized that they opened their restaurant in 1992 to cater to families. The restaurant's name, they said, symbolizes Greek warriors who defeated Turkish soldiers in 1821.
On the night of our visit, several families were enjoying some of the many reasonably priced menu offerings . Most of the charcoal-grilled and baked dinners are $11 to $13.
Time-tested Greek recipes like lamb shish kebab ($13) and stuffed grape leaves ($13) predominate. Yet there are plenty of other choices, such as grilled lemon-pepper chicken ($14); a combination seafood plate of fried haddock, calamari, french fries, and a Greek salad ($15); and a vegetarian omelet with onions, cheese, peppers, and tomato ($8.50).
The 10 appetizers included stuffed cabbage leaves ($6); meatballs, feta, and olives ($6); and locanico, or Greek sausage with lemon ($5.50).
We decided on the lamb shish kebab, chicken shish kebab (also $13), and a rib-eye steak ($13). We also ordered rice, a vegetable medley, and Greek salads.
Our Greek salads were perfectly chilled and the dressing was pleasantly tangy.
The grilled chicken shish kebab and the rib-eye steak were superb. The marinated chicken cubes, served with peppers and onions and rice with a tomato sauce, were tender and tasty, as was the rib-eye, which came with boiled potatoes, carrots, and peas.
The lamb shish kebab was tasty but the lamb , also marinated, was a bit tough.
While awaiting our orders, we gazed at a large mural of an Evzon warrior and old family photographs along another wall. Because the other dozen or so customers were intent on savoring their dinners, there was little background noise . Service was prompt and friendly.
For dessert we chose one of our all-time favorites , baklava ($2). The two other choices, also $2 each, were rice pudding and a custard pie called galaktoboureko.
The baklava, with its flaky crust and layers of crunchy nuts and honey, melted in our mouths. A fitting ending to what my son-in-law had suggested at the outset: good home cooking away from home.