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Parea is a Greek term that roughly translates to “ a group of people who derive pleasure simply by being together”, so it’s fitting then that the restaurant, for close on 30 years, has been one of Joburg’s most popular meeting spots for great Greek cuisine – bringing people together around tables brimming with plenty a plate of meze, pita and more.
A Joburg stalwart, Parea continues to serve up no fuss, good and tasty traditional cuisine from its quintessentially Greek taverna. Begin with a selection of their dips – think hummus, taramasalta and tzatziki to be generously dolloped on warm pita breads - and a selection of their meze (best ordered to be shared by the table). These small plate, meze offerings includes an extensive vegetarian options with the likes of htipiti, a grilled feta cheese with fresh tomatoes, pepper and spices, and classic dolmathes stuffed with herbed rice. Those looking for meatier meze should opt for the chicken livers, more-ishly spicy in their peri peri sauce, or calamari, the Parea way – grilled with plenty of onion and garlic. Moving onto mains look towards the “in pita” option with various souvlaki, yiro, haloumi and falafels available in the classic Mediterranean flatbread together with onion, tomato and tzatziki or go for the Souvlakia of tender lamb cubes beautifully seasoned and cooked on skewers. End the meal with a traditional Rizogala rice pudding sprinkled with cinnamon and served hot or cold based on preference.
The wine list features the usual suspects in terms of mid to upper-middle of the range South African wines. While it’s not going to be the place you discover something new or exciting, there’s sure to be something to satisfy most palettes. A nice touch is the small selection of Greek wines, which adds a unique and authentic touch to the offering.
Parea gets busy and it gets busy quickly with waitresses at times somewhat floundering between tables. Service becomes slow and on more than one occasion numerous attempts needed to be made to get the attention of a staff member before receiving service.
The restaurant is exactly what comes to mind when thinking of a traditional, casual Greek eatery with its blue and white décor throughout and murals of the island towns along the walls. On Friday and Saturday nights the party atmosphere ramps up with Greek dancing and belly dancers adding to the authentic Greek experience.
Dinner with friends, family celebrations, date nights.
Eat Out critics dine anonymously and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.
A real afternoon treat. We were treated to a traditional Greek setting and menu. We were caught up in a true Greek style with hospitality and service quick and efficient. The food was equally good.
This is a relaxed setting. We will come back again.
Consistently excellent, authentic Greek fare. Parea is a neighborhood favourite.
Consistently excellent food, and one can never go wrong with their mezze platters. The place to go for authentic Greek cuisine in Joburg!