Alpha Astoria

2 german girls review greek cafes in Astoria Queens

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Athens Cafe --30th Ave and 32nd St.

It’s our first cafe review! And it’s only April! This is monumentous. Typically when we start projects we don’t get beyond the talking points. But here we are, early spring with the entire summer spanning before us and already we have honey covered dessert and coffee swimming in our tummies.

Our first cafe is Athens Café. It came with the highest recommendations of a clearly insane woman, so we were excited. We arrived at 6:30 and immediately got a seat by the window inside – outdoor seating was rather crowded but it was too cold out there for us anyhow. The crowd was predominantly 20-something males, most of whom appeared to have been sitting at the cafe for the last 5 hours. The cafe was quite trendy – airy, open, lots of windows and the only option for at least a block (no other Greek cafes in sight). There was a huge bar with a light-up stone wall to set off the beautiful beautiful bottles of booze. They were showing poker on the huge HDTV. Booze and gambling -- need we even finish this review?

The menu was a huge 4 pages; we choose to focus on Greek desserts b
ecause we enjoy the challenge of pronouncing things like Galaktoboureko and Loukoumades. We went with “the L things” which turned out to be fried dough covered in honey – YUM! We originally thought $7 a high price to pay for fried dough but the order contained roughly 45 lbs of greasy goodness so our wallets really can’t complain (our thighs on the other hand…).

To wash down our sugar rush Brianna ordered a Cafe Freddo ($4), Amy ordered a $3 cup of American coffee because she found the Freddo not sweet enough despite the fact that the milky liquid has reached sugar concentration – the American coffee was plenty sweet once she stirred in 3 spoonfuls of sugar (makes the fried medicine go down!). Brianna is our resident Greek expert (she spent a whole week there AND works with a Greek lady!) and she felt the Cafe Freddo was very authentic – frothy, creamy and caffeinated. Amy was hoping the American coffee would redeem itself by being “refill-a-rific” (tm Joe), but our hot-but-absent waitress did not provide any fill-a-rific opportunities.

The facilities (aka the john) were nice, if a bit hard to find—there are no obvious signs, and you have to go down stairs that are not easy to spot among the throng of tables. Once there however, all the amenities are automated—something that will please our germ-a-phobic readers, assuming that we will attract readers with debilitating psychological disorders who also love greek coffee and fried foods (every blog needs a target demograph!).

Certain unnamed entities have insinuated that there is a lack of fun and interesting activities in Astoria. So as a rebuttal we give you blog-bonus material: Amazing Astoria Activities (alliteration is catchy). Because the options are so numerous, we have decided to limit our suggestions to those which can be seen from the window of the cafe-of-the-day (rhyming is catchy too).

Today’s Amazing Astoria Activities:
Does a Cafe Freddo contain any actual coffee? Hmm... perhaps we should ask our local psychic:

No. Nescafe.

Caffeine makes you jittery, sugar gives you cavities… Astoria can help:

Overall: (in place of numbers, imagine cute icons of appropriate Greek Gods)
(All on a scale of 1-5)
Food: 4
Service: 2.5
Ambiance: 4
Average attractiveness of staff: 4.5
Average attractiveness of patrons: 3.5*

* Note that patron attractiveness rating may be skewed upwards by the presence of Amy and Bri in the cafe.


  • At 5:16 PM, Blogger floozigrl said…

    this is a mighty mighty undertaking, all of Astoria stands behind you guys! i'm really looking forward to these reviews so i can maybe finally try one of these places.
    we've even already blogged about your blog! good luck

  • At 6:27 PM, Blogger megc said…

    Good luck ladies! I look forward to reading your cafe adventures!

  • At 12:21 PM, Blogger themikestand said…

    This is surely your path to blog infamy.

    Or eternal damnation catered with tasty treats and caffeinated drinky goodness.

  • At 11:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    you should send this blog to chowhound

  • At 11:08 AM, Blogger Pedro A. Dalmau, IV said…

    Brilliant idea. I look forward to reading more!

  • At 2:33 AM, Blogger intomy said…

    Well, i have been working at athens cafe for about 2 years, and although
    the coffee is nice and the pastries very tasty, what goes on behind the counter and down in the kitchen...i'm sure you don't wanna find out. If you fancy some frappe with spit or some sandwich with you-know-what from our mexican friends down in the kitchen, then this is the cafe for you

  • At 4:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I went there a month or so ago and had the smoked salmon salad that comes with arugula, avocado, cherry tomatoes and orange with mayo dressing. I got that and a glass of wine. That time the arugula was not washed properly and I could feel the dirt on my teeth. I said to my self that it was just a one time thing. I have a restaurant and I understand that sometimes things like that might happen especially if someone is training. The second time I went there I got the same thing and it was they way it should. The third time my friend and I got the same salad only in her salad we found a hair. As I said I have a restaurant and I was ..... foolishly sympathetic. The forth time I got the salad and a wine spritzer only this time the salad looked more like a soup because of the amount of dressing. Now yesterday I went there again, I keep going back for that salad cause when they make it right it tastes great. Now this time I ordered like this: "May I have the arugula salad with the smoked salmon please? and a wine spritzer" The guy comes back and he brings me a different salad made of arugula, goat cheese, pine nuts and cherry tomatoes and the salmon on top. I explained that this is not what I wanted and I showed him in the menu but I said it ok I just won't eat the goat cheese. Who on earth would combine goat cheese with smoked salmon?. Anyway when I ask for the check they give me this: They charge me for an arugula salad $13 and then under it they add: grilled salmon $4 !!!!! So I had to pay 17 dollars for a salad that costs 13 because the waiter does not know the menu. And then for the first time they charge me each spritzer the full price of a glass of wine which is $8.50. I complain to the waiter and he says he can only fix the price of the spritzers and when I went tho a guy behind the counter he says that he can only fix the price of the salad!!!! Anyway I left them $40 and left and never going back. No body seems to know what is doing there. I guess after the first incident I should not have gone back but I live in the hood and thought I should support local cafes... I went 5 times there within a month and they have nerve to tell me that it was my mistake and that I ordered the wrong things and that mistake happened the fifth time and not the first...they are a joke. If you want to go there go and have a frape or a beer but do not expect more than that. They don't even know the menu.

  • At 7:27 PM, Anonymous Vane said…

    I really love this place! The food and the service always excellent ; last Friday night I went with some friends and our waiter (his name is Nick) suggest me the best wine ever! and give us to try Baklava , so delicious ...He is adorable :-)

  • At 7:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The owner of this place is a real piece of art. From starting as a foreign student to eventually becoming an undocumented alien who owns a cafe making bags full of cash and eventually living the american dream...another cyprian fool who dumps his family for some greek, gold digging BJ. Just another overpriced casino inspired cafe.


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