"LET FOOD BE THY MEDICINE, AND MEDICINE THY FOOD." -Hippocrates
Istros is a Modern Greek Restaurant run by Spyros and Emma Karagiannis. It has been in the Karagiannis family for 15 years and was passed down from father to son in 2017. Originally a traditional Greek restaurant, where most of the dishes were cooked by “Mama Istros”, the couple decided to put their own stamp on it and create modern Greek dishes with a twist.
Greek Classics with a twist
We love Mama Istros' cooking and her influence and culinary expertise will always live on through our dishes, Traditional tastes and knowledge will always be incorporated into the food we make, but we try to add in tastes from different cultures and modern cooking techniques to provide a new Greek eating experience.
Enjoying good company whilst listening to good music and indulging in delectable food is of paramount importance in Greek culture. And Istros is well-known for being a venue where good food and good music go hand in hand, so make sure you pass by on a Tuesday or Saturday evening to appreciate live Greek music along with your meal.
Adapting Greek Cuisine
Changes in modern world eating habits have seen a rise in demand for sustainable cooking methods and inclusive dishes. And while the Mediterranean and Greek diets are naturally more in tune with the new global demand for conscious eating and cooking, we believe that some elements need tweaking and that is why we’re constantly working on adapting our dishes and ingredients to make sure we’re making each Greek dish we serve, the best it can possibly be; for you and the environment. We do all this by making sure our menu is true to the beliefs of the founding father of modern medicine; Hippocrates, who believed that the right food has the potential to heal.
Some of our dishes have even been inspired by the area in which we are located, the area in which the Karaginnis family was raised; Lambi. Lambi was once a bustling hub of tinned tomato factories, in fact, it was the most prosperous industry on the island before tourism on the island began. As we’re located next to many of the now derelict tinned tomato factories, we try to pay homage to this part of our history by adapting some of the more traditional tomato dishes that have been made on Kos for centuries to produce unique and maybe even tastier ones.
Quality is, of course, of utmost importance to us so we spend months researching what will go onto our menu. As a small business ourselves, we do our best to support other small businesses in the country; be it the farmer working with his family down the road or a small brewery in the North of the country selling Greek craft beers; we are constantly in search of the tastiest and most sustainable products that we think our customers will love just as much as we do. We also believe that the “father of medicine”, Hippocrates, who was born on Kos and taught medicine here, was right in his belief that we are what we eat. So we try to use as many fresh “healing” herbs in our dishes as possible; herbs that are native to Kos and organically grown in our garden. If you do pass by, make sure you take a walk around the garden to see which healing processes Hippocrates believed each local herb carried out.
Hippocrates' Herb Garden
During the periods we are closed, we still spend the majority of our time at the restaurant, searching for ways to improve the way we look and work.
In our garden you will find flowers planted by our son and fences built by our own hand using scrap wood. We raid our friends’ garages in search of old furniture or what some might call “junk” and get to work upcycling it to bring it back to life. We do this to honour the generations that have passed before us and to create a homely environment that will give you even more insight into the Greek culture and unique hospitality.
As lovers of our natural world, we respect everything it gives us and so we do our best to protect it. As businesses can produce hefty carbon footprints, we’re constantly learning how to make better environmentally conscious operating choices. We use recyclable paper throughout the restaurant, we’re constantly replacing our appliances in favour of energy efficient alternatives, we use LED light bulbs and we recycle all our bottles and waste. We change our menus every year so instead of producing menus that are non-recyclable and end up sitting in a land fill site, we choose to create recyclable paper placemat alternatives. We recycle our oil and give our food waste to local farmers who provide us with free range eggs in return.
If you’ve got any suggestions on how we can even further reduce our carbon footprint then please let us know.
We want you to have more than just dinner when you visit Istros, we want it to be an experience. We want you to relax, take your time and savour every moment and every taste, so please feel comfortable enough to ask for us by name and let us know how we can make your evening everything you expected it to be and more.