Address: 740 Corydon Ave
Entrees: $10 – $17
Family spirit radiates from every corner of Greek culture, so it’s no surprise Corydon Avenue’s mainstay Nikos has maintained unwavering allure for three decades. Its secret lies in sticking to its identity and playing to its strengths: delivering consistent, delicious comfort food with heart.
Step inside and inviting Greek folk music rings from Bazouki strings, cajoling a jovial spirit that loosens the shoulders and un-furrows the brow. Light blue and tan coloured walls dotted with images of the Aegean Sea spark the tempting fantasy of escaping to a Greek island.
Thankfully the dreamy food is reality. Crisp curls of delicately breaded squid are soft, tender, and dissolve on the tongue. Accompanying tzatziki, light as a cloud, adds lemony zing.
True to its Mediterranean roots, Nikos applies lemon liberally. Avgolemono soup teases sour citrus into hearty chicken broth and rice. Each custard-like spoonful delights with textural contrasts.The roasted chicken dinner rewards too, with juicy, lemon infused meat intermingling with oregano-laden potatoes.
Staple dishes are the beating heart of the menu. Nutmeg-laced moussaka warms the soul with the comfortable familiarity of sliced eggplant, creamy potato and ground beef. Gyros are loaded to the max, with shavings of lamb, beef and chicken piled into a light and fluffy pita already towering with veggies.
Rich meatiness also defines the deluxe burger. A mammoth patty smothered in decadent chili, encased in a fluffy bun creates the satisfying drip-down-your-arm experience Winnipeggers know well.
After the generously portioned entrées, Greek cuisine prevails once again. Ekmek (a traditional custard and cream dessert) or a light and airy tiramisu brings the meal to a smooth, satisfying close without over indulging.
In an industry fraught with short- lived business ventures and quick turnover, Nikos’ consistent quality and finesse has solidified its status as the city’s go-to for Greek eats— and is the key to another 30 years on the restaurant scene.