Taverna O Nikolas in Agia Pelagia

While travelling the island of Crete in off-season it is sometimes hard to find a taverna or restaurant open, especially in smaller villages or those places that rely on bigger resort hotels. We visited Agia Pelagia in March and with the help of a local supermarket owner found our way to “O Nikolas”.

O Nikolas is a small, family-run taverna named after the son of the owner. When I say small, I mean small – only a few tables and the kitchen is right in the same space. During season there is outside seating available though. It was packed with locals since, as we were told, it is the only place open during off-season in that area.

We were lucky to be able to grab a table and earned a few curious looks whenever a new patron arrived. We loved the vibe at O Nikolas – friendly people and a glimpse of the local community.

Oh the food, oh so good…

We love bread and if you get served three kinds – white, dark and rusk – in your bread basket it is a great start to a meal for us. Next up was a Greek salad and this had to be one of the best we ever had on Crete. It is hard to mess up a Greek salad on Crete with such good produce available, but for some reason the ingredients in THIS salad clicked perfectly!

Since we were able to choose from the pots and pans that were cooking away goodies in the kitchen we picked two “low and slow” dishes and a freshly prepared local fish. The fish was grilled to perfection and served with a lemon and olive oil sauce on the side. The cooked chicken was tender and flavourful and had very good french fries as a side.

Our choice of stuffed vegetables – zucchini, bell pepper and a tomato – had the perfect rice/tomato/herb filling. We really recommend this dish to any stuffed veggie lover!

The feast at O Nikolas was rounded out with greek yoghurt served with blueberries, raki and some clementines to take home. Verdict: O Nikolas will be on our list of places to eat whenever we are in the Agia Pelagia area – really, really good home cooked food!