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Fortællinger fra Kreta | 17

Tales from Crete | 17

Most of us who come to Crete a lot also have the same places to eat when we are hungry.

In some subtle way, we are probably just set up in such a way that we feel best with some habits and familiar surroundings, although we also like to try something new once in a while.

A number of years ago, my wife had decided that we should try to eat some very atypical Greek food. We were going to Paleochora in southern Crete and eat real vegetarian food. So not something where you just get the meat dish served without meat and with a little cooked broccoli, but where you only serve vegetarian dishes in the right way. Honestly, it was far from what I associate with holidays and Crete, because I love meat and I don't think I want to take the vegetables from the rabbits and all the other animals that live only on vegetables. So it was with great skepticism, almost reluctance on my part, that we took the car and drove south, while I scowled at all the tavernas along the way where the smell of grilled lamb and other good things tickled my nostrils all the way in our little open Suzuki. I guess there wasn't much talking along the way either, because I was looking forward most of all to getting back to Chania and getting some proper meat, so I think I just sat and sulked a bit. But what do you not do for the sake of your wife and domestic peace.

We quickly found "Third Eye", as the restaurant is called, and also found out that we had landed in a kind of time warp. Not much had happened since the owner Eftihis started the place together with his New Zealand girlfriend Caroline, as young hippies. Eftihis just hadn't put the hippie days behind him, and was wearing the same loose-fitting Stumpetrousers that he probably also had back then in the late 70s, and which probably should have been discarded already early in the 80s. He also thought himself that it was perfectly okay to serve with a bare stomach and bare toes in the Klip clappers. It was the middle of the day and time for lunch, and we were in no way offended by his attire, which also suited both the place, the atmosphere and the person. Eftihis was incredibly lively, service-minded and welcoming, as long as he wasn't just sitting on his chair resting on two legs with the back against the wall, smoking a slightly special-smelling home-rolled cigarette. I don't think that kind of service and dressing had gone to many other places.

But it honestly annoyed me a little that my wife had such a hard time taking her eyes off his well-trimmed slim brown torso while I fumbled about buttoning up my short-sleeved Hawaiian shirt grudgingly to cover just a little bit of a nascent six - pack.

Well, we ordered and the food arrived and I have to admit it looked amazingly delicious. But now you shouldn't let yourself be dazzled by the sight, so I tried very carefully to sip a little here and there. However, all my preconceptions about vegetarian dishes quickly fell short, and I had to surrender completely to one of the tastiest things I had ever tasted. After lunch I was almost intoxicated with taste experiences, ready to confess myself as a future vegetarian. Had no idea it could taste THAT good. But the next day I luckily came to my senses again and ordered a huge meat dish at the local tavern in Chania when we got back.

Today it is Eftihi's son Luke who runs "Third Eye" in the same spirit as always, but without the home-rolled cigarettes, baggy trousers, flip-flops and bare upper body. The food, on the other hand, is of the same high quality with fresh organic vegetables, fruit, salads, cheeses and much more, and it still tastes enchanting. So for me it's a "must go" place to go and eat, pretty much every time I'm in Crete, so now it's also become a habit, but a good one of its kind.

If you want a well-prepared vegetarian dinner without overcooked broccoli, then "Third Eye" is a really good choice.

Welcome and have a good weekend!

Tales from Crete

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