Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Catching a bargain Greek seafood lunch in midtown Manhattan

Each table at Estiatorio Milos, a Greek seafood restaurant in midtown Manhattan, has a bottle of extra-virgin olive oil and a miniature oregano plant. At lunch on Monday, a server poured olive oil into a dish, snipped leaves from the plant into it and whisked both away.


Estiatorio Milos is one of Manhattan's best restaurants, especially if you love fresh seafood.

And until Aug. 16, you can enjoy a three-course weekday lunch for only $25 during the semi-annual Restaurant Week promotion.

On Monday, the limited fixed-price menu offered 2 grilled Canadian scallops as an appetizer, but I had my heart set on fresh fish as an entree.

So, I ordered the Mediterranean Meze Plate with tasty taramosalata, hummus, tzatziki, Greek olives, sliced radish and the world's smallest spinach pie. 

Mediterranean Meze Plate.

A fresh whole Loup de Mer from the island of Kephalonia with steamed crown broccoli.

My entree swam a long way from Greece, but landed on my plate butterflied, grilled and dressed in a simple emulsion of extra-virgin olive oil, lemon juice and oregano. Delicious.

I ended the meal with fresh fruit, including a slice of perfectly ripe cantaloupe.

The $25 lunch represents a savings of $15 or $20, compared to ordering a la carte.

I got even a better deal by registering the American Express card I used to pay for the meal, and will receive a $5 statement credit each time I eat at a restaurant taking part in the semi-annual promotion.

Fresh Fruit of the Season, with a gloriously sweet slice of cantaloup.

The bread served is nothing special -- I ate just the crust -- but excellent Greek extra-virgin olive oil and fresh oregano make you forget that.

After my meal, I looked over the well-iced fresh fish and other seafood on a display in the dining room, marveling at sea scallops with their roe.

Live sea scallops in their shells were being offered for $14 each.  

Fresh whole fish was available, starting at around $45 a pound.

The New York City Restaurant Week promotion began in 1992 at lunch only (3 courses for $19.92, plus tax and tip).

Each year, the price for lunch went up one cent. In  2010, the price jumped to $24.07.

This year's increase to $25 makes it easier to figure the tip: 15% is $3.75 and 20% is $5.

On the fresh-seafood display, a delicacy I have never seen: Sea scallops with their roe. The restaurant says they are perfect when grilled in the open kitchen.

Tables near the bar. The fresh-seafood display is at the rear.

The restaurant is on West 55th Street, near Sixth Avenue.

Estiatorio Milos, 125 W. 55th St., near Sixth Avenue, Manhattan; 212-245-7400.

Web site:  Simply prepared fresh seafood

New York City Restaurant Week offers 3-course lunches and 3-course dinners at hundreds of restaurants through Aug. 16.

Web site: 3 courses for $25 and $38


  1. I've never seen sea scallops served with their roe before. The Greeks must catch them in a roe boat.

  2. You wish. Sadly, Greeks are notorious for using dynamite to catch fish. On a trip to the Greece in the early 1990s, I was shocked by high prices for fish in restaurants, and then read in our guidebook about the use of explosives. I met a native of Greece about 2 years ago who said his relatives are still using dynamite.


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