Quick Bites: Opa! Warm up with Winter Greek Fest

A taste of summer: Winter Greek Fest is being held today and tomorrow at the Shops at University Square in Rochester.

Thanks to Rochester's restaurant renaissance (and several Greek restaurateur families), Mediterranean foodisn't hard to find in Rochester.

But perhaps the only place where you're guaranteed a bite of authentic Greek food along with a healthy dose of Greek culture is at Rochester's annual Greek Festival.The longstanding food and culture event, hosted by the Greek Orthodox Churchon Center Street, has been held on a hot weekend in the middle of summer for more than 50 years.

Then, likely because Greek Fest withdrawal symptoms became painfully obvious all around the city, the church decided to hold a mini Greek Festin the middle of winter. And it's about that time again.

In fact, it's already happening. Winter Greek Festis being held in the skyway level of the Shops at University Square (111 S. Broadway) today and tomorrow, Feb. 12-13, from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. each day.

They don't have the amazing variety of food as they do at the summer festival, but they bring their best. The menu includes Greek salad, souvlakiaand gyros, and this year, they've added spanakopita(spinach pie) and tyropita(cheese pie). For dessert, they have plenty of baklava.


Give them a tip and see if you can get an "Opa!" out of them — I bet it won't be hard. Credit cards are accepted.

Take Tonic home

I know, I know, I'm on a Tonic streak lately. But here's the secret: If your restaurant keeps doing new and interesting things, I have a lot to say about you. In that regard, Tonic has kept the conversation going.

Owner Nicci Sylvesterrecently started Tonic Meals To Go, which is super-perfect for a family like mine — there are some nights I just don't have the energy to get dinner going, but going out with four kids seems like even more work. And then my kids have the nerve to be hungry anyway.

Tonic to the rescue.

Sylvester posts the week's menu on the Tonic Facebook page and on Tonic's blog on Monday — typically four to five choices of complete meals — and you email her your order by 8 p.m. Tuesday for pickup after 9 a.m. on Thursday. The meals should feed a family of four, but she can also cut them in half for a party of two.

One of this week's options included thyme and lemon roasted chicken, parmesan smashed potatoes and orange-kissed carrots and parsnips.Another choice had a balsamic roasted beet salad, another with savory mushroom and leek bread pudding and one with the comfort food of soup and bread.

Several options are gluten-free, and this week, she even had a breakfast options, and just for fun, a super foods face mask. Check out or on Monday next week for the new menu. Then email with your order, and pick up your healthy, delicious dinner at Tonic (1217 Second St. SW) this time next week.

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