Exploring Argos: Traditional Dishes, Restaurants, and Recipes

Discover Argos: Traditional dishes, top restaurants, and authentic recipes for a delectable Greek culinary experience!

Exploring Argos: Traditional Dishes, Restaurants, and Recipes

Exploring Argos: Traditional Dishes, Restaurants, and Recipes

Introduction to Argos Cuisine

Situated in the northeastern part of the Peloponnesian Peninsula, Argos boasts a rich history that dates back to antiquity. Reflecting its heritage, the local cuisine of Argos combines traditional Greek ingredients with region-specific techniques, resulting in dishes that are both delicious and distinctive. Exploring the culinary landscape of Argos is akin to taking a journey through Greek history, culture, and tradition.

Historical Context

The history of Argos is intertwined with its cuisine. As one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world, Argos has seen a variety of influences over the centuries, including Mycenaean, Classical Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman. Each of these periods has contributed to the local food culture, from the types of ingredients used to the methods of preparation. The fertile plains surrounding the city provide an abundance of fresh produce, while the nearby Aegean Sea supplies a variety of seafood.

Main Ingredients

The staples of Argos cuisine include:

  • Olive oil - often considered liquid gold in Greece, it's a fundamental element in almost every dish.
  • Feta cheese - a brined curd white cheese made from sheep's milk, essential in salads and pies.
  • Fresh vegetables - tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, and onions are commonly used.
  • Herbs and spices - oregano, thyme, rosemary, mint, and dill are frequently used to enhance the flavors.
  • Seafood - thanks to its proximity to the sea, dishes featuring fish, octopus, and squid are prevalent.
  • Lamb and pork - these meats are often grilled or used in stews.

Traditional Dishes of Argos


Moussaka is a classic Greek casserole that layers eggplants, minced meat (usually lamb or beef), and a rich béchamel sauce. It's baked until golden and bubbly, and it's a comfort food staple in many homes in Argos.


Similar to lasagna, Pastitsio is a baked pasta dish that includes layers of pasta, ground meat, and béchamel sauce. The distinctive cinnamon-infused ground meat sets this dish apart, offering a unique Greek flavor profile.


Dolmades are grape leaves stuffed with a mixture of rice, pine nuts, and herbs. They can be served cold as an appetizer or warm as a main course. Variations may include minced meat.


Saganaki can refer to a variety of Greek dishes prepared in a small frying pan, but the most popular version in Argos is the one featuring a slice of pan-seared cheese, usually halloumi or kasseri, which is then flambéed with ouzo or lemon juice.


Spanakopita is a spinach pie made with flaky phyllo pastry and filled with spinach, feta cheese, onions, and herbs. It's crispy, savory, and a beloved dish in Argos.

Famous Restaurants in Argos

For those visiting Argos, there are several renowned establishments where you can savor the local cuisine:

  • To Ktima:
    This restaurant is famed for its authentic Greek dishes and beautiful, rustic setting. Try their lamb kleftiko, a slow-cooked lamb wrapped in parchment paper, which infuses the meat with herbs and spices.
  • O Nikolas:
    Known for its fresh seafood, O Nikolas offers dishes like grilled octopus and calamari, prepared with a lemon and olive oil dressing.
  • Mageireio Kipos:
    Located in the heart of Argos, this eatery is famed for its hearty home-cooked meals, including moussaka and pastitsio.
  • Taverna O Christos:
    Perfect for sampling mezedes (small dishes), Taverna O Christos offers a variety of small plates, including saganaki, tzatziki, and dolmades.
  • Psarodromos:
    A fish taverna that boasts a wide selection of fresh catches of the day, expertly grilled or fried to perfection.

Traditional Recipes

Moussaka Recipe

  • Ingredients:
    • 3 large eggplants, sliced
    • 500g ground lamb or beef
    • 1 onion, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 cups tomato sauce
    • 1 tsp cinnamon
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • For the béchamel:
      • 5 tbsp butter
      • 1/2 cup flour
      • 3 cups milk
      • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
      • 2 egg yolks
  • Instructions:
    1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
    2. Brush eggplant slices with olive oil, place on a baking sheet and roast until golden.
    3. In a skillet, sauté onions and garlic, add ground meat, cook until browned. Add tomato sauce and cinnamon, simmer for 20 minutes.
    4. Prepare béchamel sauce: Melt butter, stir in flour, and gradually add milk. Cook until thickened, then stir in cheese and egg yolks.
    5. Layer eggplant and meat mixture in a baking dish, top with béchamel sauce.
    6. Bake for 45 minutes until golden brown.

Local Anecdotes and Interesting Facts

Argos is not only known for its dishes but also for its food-related traditions and stories:

  • The city's name, "Argos," is believed to mean "field" or "plain," reflecting its agricultural abundance.
  • During ancient times, foods such as barley bread, figs, and olives were considered staples in Argos.
  • The local markets, filled with fragrant herbs and spices, are a testimony to the regions’ rich culinary tapestry.
  • Argos is also renowned for its wine production, with local vineyards producing some of Greece’s finest wines.
  • Many recipes have been handed down through generations, preserving the authenticity and tradition of the cuisine.


Exploring the culinary scene of Argos allows one to delve into the rich history and culture of this ancient city. From traditional recipes to storied restaurants, the food of Argos is a testament to the region's vibrant and enduring heritage. Whether you're a visitor eager to taste local specialities or someone wanting to recreate these dishes at home, the cuisine of Argos offers a delectable journey through time and tradition.