One of the first boutique hotels in Athens, Zillers was founded in 2016. In its early days, it was the hotel’s eponymous bar/restaurant that was mostly mentioned in lists of the best rooftop spots in Athens. In recent years, however, the Zillers restaurant has set off towards the (Michelin) stars, managing to tap one in 2022. The credit for this honour goes to the talented Chef Pavlos Kyriakis.
Located opposite the Athens Cathedral, the building is named after the famous German architect who is responsible for some of Greece’s most emblematic turn-of-the-century- buildings, including the Presidential Mansion and the National Theatre of Greece. Amongst its peers, Zillers is a bit of a unicorn, being the only Michelin-starred restaurant to be found in the very centre of Athens that also comes with breathtaking views of the Acropolis.
There are two set menus; All Astir (seven courses for €95,) and Going Abroad (ten courses for €125). What sets Zillers apart from other Michelin-starred restaurants in Athens is its emphasis on “Greekness”. The star dish is a rack of lamb smoked in sage, along with other parts of the lamb such as the brain and slow-cooked shoulder, served with peas, chanterelles and xinohondros (a Cretan version on the pebble-shaped grain pasta trahanas) fermented in sheep’s buttermilk and topped with a xinomavro wine sauce. A great Greek dish that felt very homely yet deeply refined. We also liked the Green Globe artichoke dish, served with celery root puree, egg and lemon sauce and Arabica coffee. Last but not least, there was the aftozymo: a twist on the traditional Cretan recipe with chickpea and aniseed, this aftozymo had the look and texture of a brioche but left a lingering aftertaste of cumin and milk. Served with an excellent, rich goat's butter, it was a real treat.