Perched on a pedestrian street in Dafni away from the city’s buzz is Jerar, an unassuming fine dining restaurant that calls for intimate gatherings. High ceilings coupled with industrial yet cosy interiors beautifully merge with an expanded bistronomique menu that calls for attention from all foodies alike!
It’s right in the middle of summer when we meet with a friend to try out this new place that got raving reviews from a fellow foodie I trust. I arrive on time and as I walk to our table I take note of the dimly lit setting and the nice terrace they got going on this small pedestrian street next to a park. Some kids are playing nearby and I take a seat to peruse the elegantly-made menu.
Before proceeding to our selection, the very kind service staff arrives with their bread dish. They make their own sourdough and serve it with an excellent quality butter and extra virgin olive oil from Mani. What a treat!
With so many delicacies to choose from, we can’t decide whether we’re for surf or turf… so we opt for both! For starters we have a very refreshing and juicy burrata with melon, tomatoes and spearmint, their signature spanakopittakia dish, as well as fried rabbit tenders served with mayo and pickles. All three very good!
The next dish to arrive is the one we mostly contemplated over. Cacio e pepe with shrimp tartare. Sounds puzzling, no? Unless you’re a true surf ‘n’turf addict; which we’re not. Regardless, we power through and take the first bite. A bite from heaven! A very rich cacio e pepe bisque, beautifully blends with the freshness of the cold tartare and the rosemary oil brings everything together – what an amazing dish!
Last but not least, the dry-aged prime rib eye arrives which is served with lots of goodies a very bold Béarnaise sauce. Good but not as close as to the carbs galore of the pasta.
The conversation is going strong and as we clank the glasses for one last sip, the dessert arrives. One of my favourite ones, here made with a twist. A rice pudding topped with apricot chunks (they also do a strawberry version around springtime), dried cherries and a scoop of sorbet ice cream.
But above all, a very attentive and kind service especially by the sommelier that also helped us pick a tangy Chardonnay. Well done to the Jerar team, headed by George Kavaklis and Haris Nikolouzos who invested their time and effort in making their childhood neighbourhood a place to visit again!
Extra tip: the chef and owner tells us the name comes from a mention of Gerard on the Aparadektoi TV show that was a big hit in the 90s. Why on earth you’d go for a name like that? Beats us. But we love Gerard and Jerar!