The hits make up for the misses at Parthenon in Frankfurt
Stars and Stripes April 28, 2023
Parthenon in Frankfurt is a restaurant that I have wanted to try for years.
Housed in a big apartment building in the Sachsenhausen section of the city, it always seemed popular, with its spacious terrace usually quite full when the weather allowed.
My wife and I finally had the chance to check it out on a recent Friday evening. Although it was too cool to sit outside, we took the plunge anyway.
It was a good thing we had made a reservation, because within an hour after the place opened, almost all the tables were taken.
Parthenon has a fine-dining ambience, with white table linens and flowers on every table.
Unlike many Greek restaurants in Germany, it isn’t overtly decorated with statues of Greek gods or heroes, just some modest paintings of classical temples adorning the walls.
The waitstaff was prompt. We ordered mineral water and two glasses of the dry house wine and studied the menu.
It was a mix of typical Greek dishes like moussaka and gyros, and non-Greek favorites such as beef fillet and veal chops.
There was a varied selection of salads and a nice choice of fish and seafood. On the downside, there were few choices for vegetarians or vegans.
To start off, we shared the mixed appetizer platter. It contained tzatziki and creams of pepper and eggplant, sheep’s milk cheese and pepper, eggplant, fish roe and split pea. The plate was garnished with sheep’s milk cheese, olives, peppers, dried tomatoes and cucumbers.
Each of the creams came with its own little spoon. The platter looked great and was delicious. Its items can be ordered separately, but the combo is a nice cross-section of the Greek culinary scene.
While the entrée of grandmother’s meatballs with sheep’s milk cheese filling in a lemon butter sauce sounded very tempting, I went with Parthenon’s surf ‘n’ turf plate as my main course.
It featured a skewer with, from top to bottom, a plump shrimp, a lamb fillet and a beef fillet on a splash of red wine-rosemary sauce, flanked by two scallops.
My wife selected the duo of grilled fish fillets, which were sea bass and sea bream. Both dishes came with a side of rice and roasted vegetables that included fennel, peppers, zucchini, carrots and potatoes.
She was a little disappointed with the presentation of her meal. It tasted good, but both fish were very similar in look and taste. The small difference was that the bass was a little fattier than the bream.
A better combination, for eyes and palate, might have been salmon with either of the other fish.
My dish was tasty, with both the fillets cooked perfectly. The shrimp was succulent, and the scallops were how I like them: crisp on the outside, juicy inside.
On the side, the rice was rather dry, but the veggies were perfectly roasted and seasoned.
Although one of our favorite Greek desserts, galaktoboureko, was on the menu, we split the kadaifi instead.
A crisp semolina angel hair pasta with honey, topped with vanilla cream and chopped walnuts, and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, it was sweet and delicious.
The real disappointment of the evening, though, was the Greek coffee we ordered with dessert. While it tasted fine, it was rather tepid by the time it was served.
It was an unfortunate way to conclude the evening, although the complimentary shots of ouzo that our waiter offered us did offset this drawback a bit.
In the end, the measure of a restaurant is whether it warrants a return visit. And we’ll definitely go back to Parthenon. After all, grandma’s meatballs are still calling my name.
Location: Kennedyallee 34 in 60596 Frankfurt am Main
Hours: Noon to 3 p.m. and 6 to 11 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Closed on Monday.
Dress: Casual to business casual.
English menu: yes
Prices: Appetizers from 6.90 to 18.50 euros; entrees from 21.50 to 38.80 euros; desserts from 6 to 9.50 euros. Soft drinks start at 3.30 euros, beer at 3.80 euros and wine at 7 euros.
Information: Online: parthenon-restaurant.de. Reservations recommended.