TNT Diner

Good eats and drinks around Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound

Tag: Tacoma Greek festival

Oct.
4th

Live dining report: Tacoma Greek Festival


A Kataifi roll, which is something similar to baklava, just made with shredded phyllo dough, walnuts and a honey syrup. It’s one of a dozen or so pastries for sale at the St. Nicholas Greek Festival.

It never fails that I depart the St. Nicholas Greek Festival stuffed and reeking of Greek. It’s a Tacoma tradition now in its 52nd year. Tough gig I have here as the paper’s hired belly, right?

Diners who stopped by Friday for the opening of the three-day festival were met with a heavy waft of garlic and an army of volunteers who made quick service of the lines. The tent was erected this week to help the church hold around 9,000 eaters expected this weekend. Read more »

Oct.
3rd

Weekend of feasting: Greek Festival in Tacoma and Oktoberfest Northwest in Puyallup

Groups of church volunteers gather weeks in advance to prepare items like dolmades, grape leaves stuffed with beef, rice and mint. They'll be served at this weekend's Greek festival at St. Nicholas Church in Tacoma. File art 2011. Peter Haley / Staff photographer
Groups of church volunteers gather weeks in advance to prepare items like dolmades, grape leaves stuffed with beef, rice and mint. They’ll be served at this weekend’s Greek festival at St. Nicholas Church in Tacoma. File art 2011. Peter Haley / Staff photographer

The first week in October brings a true struggle for a hired belly in the South Sound.

Schnitzel first? Or gyros and souvlaki?

Can I really stuff my face full of bratwurst, pickle soup, potato pancakes, souvlaki, gyros, baklava, calamari, skordalia sauce and Greek coffee – deep breath – all in a single afternoon? And live to write about it?

You bet I can. And I do. Every year. Because the volunteer-run Greek Festival in Tacoma and the ode to German eats and brew at Oktoberfest Northwest in Puyallup are what I consider the region’s finest food festivals. I’ll have live coverage of both right here on the good ol’ world famous TNT Diner blog.

That both food festivals are the same weekend gives me grief because they both deserve your attendance, but if I only had time or money to go to one, I’d stick with the Greek Festival. Because, well, baklava.

Read below for summaries of both festivals, held Friday through Sunday.

And here’s one more for your calendar: On Oct. 20, the Sons of Norway will have their lutefisk dinner and bake sale. See below for details. Read more »

Oct.
5th

Greek festival: Gyros, souvlaki, calamari and delicious pastries all weekend

Church members have cooked all week so you don’t have to. The 51st annual Greek festival is Friday through Sunday at St. Nicholas Church in Tacoma. On the menu is gyros, souvlaki, dolmathes, baklava and countless other pastries you can’t pronounce, but will enjoy immensely.

Oct.
1st

Gyros update: It’s Greek to Me move on schedule for Jan. 1, Greek festival this weekend

Two important things for your gyro radar: The annual Greek festival at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox church is this Friday through Sunday. I’ll have a complete story with tips for how to eat around the festival this Friday, but for now, here’s another important gyros update – It’s Greek To Me is on schedule with its move across the street. Read more »

Oct.
7th

Go Greek: Dining around the tent at the Tacoma Greek Festival


Pork souvlaki is marinated, coated in oregano and grilled.

It’s a tough gig I have here – getting paid to go eat Greek food at the St. Nicholas Church’s Greek food festival. It’s one of the best eat-around festivals in the region. Much of the food is made by an army of church volunteers. My favorites? Always the dolmades, stuffed grape leaves, and the tiropites, feta cheese turnovers, and anything found in the pastry display case. Today I found a few new favorites – ouzo cake and galaktoboureko. Click “read more” to see what I ate. Also, please comment and tell other readers what you feasted on at the festival. What’d you think? Read more »

Oct.
6th

Big, fat, delicious festival: Tacoma’s St. Nicholas Greek festival begins Friday


A group of women work together at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church making thousands of dolmades for the annual Greek Festival. Photo by Peter Haley/Staff photographer.

I go every year hungry, and leave reeking of Greek eats: oregano, garlic, lamb and more garlic. The St. Nicholas Greek Festival is one of my favorite festivals and it really should be on your list, too. If anyone knows how to throw a big Greek feast, it’s the parish members and volunteers at the St. Nicholas Orthodox Church in Tacoma. Church volunteers have put on the food festival for 50 years, introducing countless Tacomans to baklava, gyros, melomakarona, koulorakia, dolmades and plenty of other Greek dishes and pastries that many may find unpronounceable, but utterly delicious. Click “read more” to see the details of this year’s festival, which begins Friday. Read more »

Oct.
1st

Nap time: We stuffed ourselves silly at the Tacoma Greek Festival. What did you eat?


Loukoumathes are deep-fried puffs of dough, dusted with cinnamon and served with honey syrup.

Why have I never tried the loukoumades?

A dining partner brought back a tray to our table earlier today at the 48th annual St. Nicholas Greek festival, and I eyed them curiously (which is code for “I wanted to pounce on them”). Golden puffs of dough, dusted with cinnamon, sitting in a pool of honey syrup. One bite of the crusty puffs earned loukoumades (also spelled loukoumathes) a spot on my must-eat list for every Greek festival from this point forward. Loukoumades. Make a note of them. You won’t regret it. They’re $3 at the booth over by the souvlaki.

What else did we eat at the 48th annual St. Nicholas Greek Festival? Click “more” to see. Read more »

Sep.
30th

Greek it up: The 48th annual Greek Festival at St. Nicholas starts Friday


Pouring syrup over trays of hot baklava, Yvonne Brandvold, right, Diane Pirotis and Sophie Najmudar, wife of Father Seraphain Najmudar, prepare last Friday, Sept. 24, for the annual Greek Festival at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church. Photo by DREW PERINE/Staff photographer)

If anyone knows how to throw a big Greek feast, it’s the parish members and volunteers at the St. Nicholas Orthodox Church in Tacoma.

For 48 years, church volunteers have thrown a Greek festival that has introduced countless Tacomans to baklava, gyros, melomakarona, koulourakia, paximadia and countless other dishes that many find unpronounceable but utterly delicious.

The 2010 festival starts Friday Oct. 1 and continues through Sunday Oct. 3.

The food? Homemade by an army of volunteers.

Rewind to August when myriad volunteers began hand rolling nearly 5,000 dolmathes, grape leaves stuffed with rice and seasoned ground beef.
In the following weeks, volunteers mixed the dough for 500 loaves of tsoureki , a Greek sweet bread, and next they made more than 4,000 tyropitakia, a flaky cheese-filled pie. Read more »