2015-01-21 / Restaurant of the Week

STIX

The Western Queens Gazette proudly welcomes STIX Mediterranean Grill to Astoria. Following the uber-success of two STIX restaurants in Manhattan’s fashionable Chelsea neighborhood, Stathis Antonakoupoulos and partners came back to their roots and brought the STIX message with them. Simply Good Food on a Stick is local, organic, and sustainable authentic Greek and

Mediterranean cuisine made from the highest quality ingredients that are fresh, hand-selected by Stathis, and never frozen. Though they’ve been open for just three weeks, tables were already full of happy diners, kids too, enjoying this light, fresh, flavorful food.

Stathis’ passion for food shows in every delicious dish, owing to a lifetime of experience in the restaurant business. Every detail has been tended to, from the spacious dining room designed by local architects ‘Archipelago 2’ that includes industrial, yet rustic wooden tables and chairs illuminated by soft candle glow and lighting with music that doesn’t intrude on your conversation. Indeed STIX Mediterranean Grill is the ideal spot for anything from an intimate date, to dinner with friends, to a family meal or weekend brunch together at the big dining table at the rear of the restaurant. Enjoy a sparkling wine, craft beer, or wine from Greece, Italy, France, Spain, and the U.S. Managers Nadia and Gabriela make you feel like family while Fernanda, the fiercely friendly bartender mixes us wickedly good cocktails such as the classic Sazerac, refreshing Kuklaki, Nicolina, Bellinis, and peach margaritas. She’ll mix your own favorite too and puts passion into every drink. Join the Happy Hour served from 4-7pm with special prices and snacks.

As the name suggests, many of the dishes here are served in mouth-sized bites on neat sticks which makes everything easy to sample, eat, and share, and you will certainly want to share some of the tempting appetizers. “Symposium” is an impressive assortment of their house made dips, served on a charming wooden board with warm, homemade, whole wheat pita bread. Creamy tzatziki yogurt dip, spicy feta cheese spread, eggplant dip, and hummus allow everyone to share the wonderful flavors. Grilled octopus is so tender and tasty, served hot off the coals with a nice amount of charred flavor ($14). We loved the little, green peppers, simply grilled with lemon and sea salt. They make a great companion with country style pork sausages or the STIX meatballs made from organic beef and mild spices ($9). Other STIXballs include toothsome quinoa balls, falafel balls, tuna risotto, or mac and cheese balls. Speaking of mac and cheese, STIX lobster and prosciutto mac and cheese is so wrong in all the right ways. Chef Shaun Butler combines elbow pasta with a secret blend of cheeses, real lobster meat, and smoky prosciutto for a fabulous side dish that you must share ($9).

Greek-style French fries are generously sprinkled with feta cheese and oregano and served in a clever metal scoop. These addictive fries are great anytime and you will want to scoop them up along with the signature STIX laced with free range chicken, juicy pork, lamb scented with rosemary, and plump, juicy shrimp. The chef’s special is a blend of lamb and beef with red wine on a stick, or the mixed grill. These juicy STIX can be ordered as singles, or two STIX with chopped green salad and roasted potatoes, or a platter for two with six STIX, hand cut fries, tzatziki sauce and fluffy pita bread. Individual STIX start at just $4 and make a great snack, appetizer, or dinner. At lunchtime, these savory, juicy STIX get piled into pita bread with chopped Greek salad, served with traditional fries starting at just $6. The lamb sliders and lobster sausage make great sandwiches too, for lunch, dinner, or anytime.

STIX allows you to eat light and healthy with their great salads and entrées. One of my favorite salads is the whole wheat orzo salad, tossed with tomatoes, feta cheese, cucumbers and olives dressed in extra virgin olive oil and lime vinaigrette for a bright, fresh salad. The classic Greek salad bursts with flavor from fresh, ripe tomatoes that must pass Stathis’ standards. The Farmer’s Blue salad is a toss of organic kale, baby spinach, roasted beets, dried figs and creamy blue cheese. The Israeli couscous is a side dish that I could eat every day with its mix of pearly couscous, chick peas, raisins, lime and olive oil dressing ($7). Other delectable sides include organic kale that is perfectly cooked to retain its texture and flavor, roasted rosemary potatoes, corn on the cob, or spinach and wild rice.

STIX is open for brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 4pm where you’ll find salmon eggs Benedict, STIX French toast made with brioche bread, a full Mediterranean breakfast, omelets filled with lobster, sausage or cheese, and lollipop pancakes, a favorite with the kids. Complement your sumptuous brunch with a Mimosa, Bloody Mary, peach Bellini, or Sangria.

Desserts are spectacular at STIX and the coffee is their own special, robust blend, so stop in anytime for “Paradise’s Nest,” a crispy, angel hair pastry layered with the most delicate almond scented Chantilly cream. “Juicy” chocolate cake is supremely moist and decadent, yet the desserts here are not overly sweet so you can taste the quality ingredients in the orange olive oil cake and the espresso crème brulee.

STIX provides expert catering to your home or office so bring all the wonderful food to your next business or family event. Order half trays or full trays of salads and sides, and STIX by the dozen to please everyone. We don’t have to go to 23rd Street in Manhattan or the Indigo Hotel to enjoy STIX Mediterranean Grill’s Simply Good Food on a Stick. There so much more here, so come and taste the excellent food and drinks, enjoy the ambience and free Wi- Fi and the outstanding, friendly service. You’ll feel good eating at STIX Mediterranean Grill, where everything is local, organic, sustainable, and so delicious!

MEDITERRANEAN GRILL

40-17 30th Avenue, Astoria  718.726.5555

www.stixny.com  Follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

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