The Greeks’ rich history and culture permeates worldwide– influencing the likes of great chefs such as Athanasios Sioras, and his partner Evangelios, to bring authentic and genuine Greek cuisine to the United States, therefore creating a unique and fascinating experience where customers can fully immerse themselves into this absorbing place, which we have yet to mention.
What I truly love about Greek cuisine is that it is composed of lots of foods I always enjoy and relish, such as
olive oil, fruits, cheeses, wines, and spices. Most traditional recipes have the previous ingredients, and what's most lovable is that it is not influenced by one culture only. Their influences are from all over Europe, Asia, and Africa.
Ya Mas Greek Taverna is the place we last visited. Its authenticity was remarkable. Its flavors were interestingly provocative and piquant, and they were new to us! The taste in each of their dishes was idiosyncratic and wholesome.
First, we would like to mention that this place was fascinating and beguiling. The place was full of blue eyes, vintage ads, and family heirlooms. There is a total amount of 500 pictures on the wall (they all look so well put together). When one steps in Ya Mas, one is transported into the Greek lands... it's absorbing and alluring. There are at least 10 things that will pique your interest and have you wonder-- "what the heck is that?"
The food was, as you might've guessed by now, heavenly. Every single dish we tried was rich in flavors and very tasty. All of their food offerings are farm to table. Every single dish is made with local ingredients (and by local, we mean very local, and sometimes national), and all ingredients are hand-selected.
We started our dining experience with their grilled octopus and the stuffed grape-leaves.
The octopus had a very peculiar taste-- Mediterranean-like, in a way, and it's funny because it is an actual Mediterranean octopus -wild-caught (and without knowing that, it was the first thing that came to mind). It had, as a side, an imam bayildi ratatouille, fresh herbs, and a sea fennel. It was so tender and fresh, and the combination of the two sides of it were delectable.
The stuffed grape-leaves consisted of American wagyu beef, rice, fresh herbs, and an egg-lemon sauce. The meat was so juicy, so dainty, so flavorful we were just crazy about it!
We, then, proceeded to try their house-made Spanakopita, which features handmade phyllo (which is the type of dough typically used in Mediterranean cooking and is used for pastries, pies, etc), organic spinach, wild greens, scallions, beechwood barrel-aged Greek feta, fresh herbs, extra virgin olive oil, and manouri (which is another type of Greek semi-soft cheese, and very, very delicious). It was our first time trying any Spanakopita, and it will not be our last, because it was so delicious, so creamy, so heavenly. We were spinach fans before this. I bet you could guess what we are now.
We tried the handmade figs & serrano tyropitakia. They were heaven on earth. They were so delicious, we needed a minute to breathe and process what was going on in our mouths. They made this using their handmade phyllo, the manouri cheese, beechwood barrel-aged Greek feta, Kasseri, Greek Fig preserves, and serrano peppers. The sweet and spicy in it killed it for us! It was so incredibly appealing, it reminded us of an everlasting marriage (ours), where hot and spicy meets sweet and mellow.
The last piece of the feast of the gods we were having came to us, came to us at a moment in our lives where we'd been craving it for a while but had yet to take the time to go and buy it and then cook it. Thankfully, we didn't because we would have felt really bad when we tasted this one. The last piece of the feast of the gods was an amazing Slow-braised lamb shank, which was cooked in red wine and tomato, and served with some amazing roasted potatoes. It was out of this world. It was so tender, so flavorful, so much taste in one bite, it made us go "wow." I doubt we've tried such delicious lamb elsewhere, and the side it came with - the roasted potatoes - were incredibly soft and so easy to eat.
This five-course meal had given us a satisfying feeling of satiety but, we had to finish the experience! The experience was not over yet! It definitely was not. We were missing dessert.
How could we forget about dessert?! We were surprised with a Merenda Sokolatina, and their baklava cheesecake. They were both so good, though we decided to go with the sokolatina, which was equal parts cake and mousse and a candied chestnut on top that made it all the better.
The drinks were another part of the experience that was a subtle part yet enhanced it in unimaginable ways. The beverage menu at Ya Mas is extensive! There is a cocktail, beer, or wine for every type of person! Sadly, we were not able to capture all of the cocktails, but just know… if there’s a drink in your mind, Heidi can make it happen. Or, if you’d rather pair your lamb with a nice glass of wine, they’ve also just got the recommendation.
This place is a diamond! The place features excellent cocktails, extraordinary food, and an amazing waitstaff and bartenders (Michelle and Heidi), moving music, and will provide anyone who visits a marvelous experience.
We rate it 5/5. Reserve now!