It’s all Greek to Us

9th Annual
Victoria Greek Fest

4648 Elk Lake Dr.
Royal Oak, BC

E: Rain or shine, the 9th Annual Greek Festival happened with a blast and I was ready to go opa instead of oh no. By the time I was out the door, it was raining.

When James and I arrived at the venue, I was immediately lured to the tents with the wonderful smell of lamb roasting on a spit.

J: I was definitely shouting Opa. With a little wine, some Greek food and being entertained by lovely belly dancers, I couldn’t ask for more. The last time I had visited these grounds, it was an open gravel lot.

But now a beautiful Greek Orthodox church stands here. It’s a vast improvement.

The rain didn’t dampen my spirits; in fact I’m a self-confessed rain lover. I was saddened however that Ed and I had just arrived at the tail end of the last show. The Greek dancers were wearing authentic costumes.

E: And I would’ve been amused if James got up on stage to dance with them. Especially with the amount of spirits he was having, but I digress.

We were here to sample the food, and I went for the traditional souvlaki dish, which sometimes can include lamb. But it was pork that I tasted instead; it had a nice grilled taste to it. I enjoyed every bite but the skewers of meat weren’t even warm.

Instead, I was piling in more pilaf into my mouth than anything else. It’s rare for me to enjoy good rice, and what I ate here was soft and fluffy, with that special zest of live to it that I enjoyed.

Afterwards, I was pining to go after all those Greek sweets.

J: Ed dragged me out between checks so being frugal was on my mind.

The lamb and the souvlaki dishes were deep in the far reaches of beyond my financial atmosphere, but I still needed to walk away with a dinner, drink and a desert. So, I settled for a gyro. Jackson Triggs Merlot wine and a ticket good for honey-puffs (greek doughnut). I was ready to taste festival dining.

E: I couldn’t restrain myself anymore. I was more coo-coo for coco puffs and was more ready for dessert than anything else.

Those Loukoumades made my day and hand me bouncing even more by nightfall. Even by next morning, I was still bouncing off the walls. Those two servings were a delight.

Those doughnuts were nice and warm, and it wasn’t drizzled with crazy amounts of cinnamon to do the Cucaracha. But that’s the wrong country. I’ve had Hungarian style Lángos too, and now I can’t decide which one I like more.

I’ve heard that Hungarian flat bread can be topped up with other stuff like with other sauces or even with meats, especially for the large sized ones, but for the smaller doughnuts? Perhaps I could fill them up with a nice custard inside.

J: The gyro wasn’t hot by any means but it was still a warm welcome. My first bite was met with a really good tzatziki sauce that caused me to close my eyes and savour the moment. Not even the sauce of Mad Greeks in Langford came close. I wondered how much better it would’ve been if I was sitting in O Thanasis, a diner in Athens.

The pita itself was stuffed with veal, tomatoes and onions—well, maybe too much onion. The vegetables were taking turns on which taste bud of mine to attack, and the veal had very little to say. But the gyro managed to fill me up quite nicely and it was an above average fare.

E: Yeah, but don’t forget this is fair food. It’s not what you’d normally get at a usual diner. At least I’ll know what I’ll want for desserts the next time I hit a Greek restaurant.

And just as we were going to leave for the day, I just had to stand closer to the grill that was tenderly roasting that beautiful leg of lamb.

J: Yes, I noticed the legs from Asmira’s Dance Theatre and you were noticing an entirely different set of legs.

E: I just stood there like a hungry cowboy in a saloon. Someone woke me up to my senses with more than just a jug of water being splashed on my face.

J: Well these cowboys, hot and wet, called it a day and rode off into the sunset.


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