Lithos Restaurant in Darien: New Greek in Town

Jeff "jfood" Schlesinger

Lithos Restaurant opened in April serving an array of Greek specialties from a house made hummus to individually prepared crocks of Moussaka to a full selection of dinner entrées including fish, meats and chicken. Located at the eastern edge of Darien in the building that formerly housed Anthony's coal fired pizza, Lithos redecorated the interior to a lighter feel with blues, taupes and fixtures to inspire a Mediterrean softness. There is a long bar in the rear of the dining area, tables, booths and a large dining table that seats 10-12 to the right of the space that can be secluded by a sliding curtain. This month the restaurant commenced lunch service with a fixed price ($16 on my visit) 3-course special that includes an appetizer sampler, a choice of entrées and a dessert of yogurt, honey and fruit.

The lunch began with a sampler of traditional Greek appetizers (photo above). My favorite of the four was the Dolmade. The single stuffed grape leaf delivered a great balance of earthiness of the oil soaked leaf with the lemon and the texture of both the leaf and the rice were al dente with just a little resistance. I also enjoyed the Yigantes (oven braised lima beans with tomato). This chilled dish included a small mound of beans, enveloped in a tomato-based sauce. The beans were prepared to retain just a little resistance. There was a tiny bit of spiciness that could have been just a little more evident. The Humus was ultra-smooth and mild in flavor. It was served with two types of grilled pita breads. It was a bit bland and thought it would have been more flavorful with more tahini. The Leek hortokeftedes (vegetable croquette) was incredibly crispy on the exterior, but the interior was a little dried out. It also lacked substantial flavor and would have benefitted from additional seasoning and less time in the fryer.

I ordered the Moussaka for my entrée (other options on the fixed price lunch are chicken or pork Souvlaki and a Bronzini filet). I was expecting the normal cube cut from a large pan, but Lithos’ is individually prepared and served in a ceramic crock, a great idea. The moussaka included ground lamb, potatoes, and eggplant, topped with a Béchamel sauce, served piping hot. The Béchamel was very good and the pieces of eggplant and potato were perfectly cooked, soft while retaining a good amount of texture. The meat was also cooked properly. Unfortunately the dish was very under-seasoned, it never leapt from the dish.

The dessert was comprised of a mound of Greek yogurt, drizzled with honey and surrounded by segments of berries and orange segments. This was a great way to end the meal with the sweet berries and honey complementing the slightly sour yogurt.

Overall Lithos has potential. The atmosphere was very relaxed, the staff was incredibly attentive and with adjusting the seasoning and timing on a few of the dishes, it will be a place for those looking for a reasonable Greek dinner.

319 Post Rd, Darien, CT 06820 - (203) 202-7776

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