Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Keeping it All in the Family: Georgia's

Georgia Kazakos, founder of Georgia's Greek Restaurant and Deli

With the rapid transformation of Seattle from a mid-sized, affordable city into an expensive big city, I regularly see small businesses in humble little buildings slated for demolition. Within a year, they're replaced by big multi-story residential/retail units. 

These teardowns can drive small shops or restaurants out of business through months of displacement. I know, change is inevitable in the face of our booming economy and thousands of job openings that bring people here from all over the world.  

 But today I'm paying homage to a decades-old small family restaurant that's still in business despite the new pressures.
When I moved to Crown Hill/Greenwood in north Seattle in the late 1990s, it was NOT a hip area. That bothered me a bit because many of my "yuppie" friends could afford homes in more upscale neighborhoods with chic cafes. (I was younger and cared more about things like that back then.)   

The first time I wandered into Greenwood's
Georgia's Greek Restaurant and Deli for breakfast, I wasn't impressed by the industrial blue carpet and decor. But when the food arrived, none of that mattered. The signature Georgia's omelette with spinach and feta, soft warm pita bread instead of toast, and crispy/tender oregano-seasoned potatoes was just perfect.

So for years now I've stopped by for meals in and to go. For parties, I'll buy a big container of their tangy, excellent revithosalata (hummus). When I've got a cold and need some mom-like comfort soup, their creamy-lemony chicken avgolemeno soup with warm pita is what I crave. 
It's not fancy schmancy, but it's solid, savory Greek food that tastes like it was made with love by your favorite aunt, grandmother, mom, or foodie dad. In fact, namesake and mom Georgia Kazakos is often seated at the small counter up front, enjoying the goings on. Today her friendly son Laki owns and runs the biz.

Laki Kazakos
On some weekend evenings, live music and dancing get the place hopping, but I'm partial to those amazing breakfasts.

"They have the best breakfast potatoes in Seattle," says Neal, the son of a friend.

Opa! Laki finishes an order of saganaki with a dramatic flourish.

Somehow I missed several years ago that Guy Fieri stopped by and featured Laki/Georgia's on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. Well deserved! (But they didn't talk about the breakfasts.)

Laki admits that a closed and fenced-in property next door hasn't helped business the last few years. But I'm happy he's still there, with mom Georgia stopping by and his daughter serving tables.

So if you're in north Seattle, swing over to Georgia's in Greenwood for a meal that tastes like home. Or grab some of their deli specialties like their organic quince jam or honey sweet baklava.

Apologies for being away so long. Look for more Pacific Northwest adventures, insider tips, and reflections in the weeks ahead.

Happy trails and thanks for visiting Pacific Northwest Seasons! In between blog posts, visit Pacific NW Seasons on FaceBook, Twitter, and Instagram for more Northwest photos and outdoors news. 

When You Go
Georgia's is on NW 85th Street about a half mile west of the main Greenwood Avenue business district. They're open every day but Tuesdays and serve breakfast until 3 pm.  Check out their hours here. For take-out orders, call 206-783-1228. Health bonus:  Those tasty omelettes and potatoes are cooked in olive oil, not butter.


Mary said...

The next time I make it to Seattle, Georgia's is on my list of places to eat. I love good Greek food!

jill said...

Hey Mary! Thanks for the comment. If you've not been to Seattle recently, you'll find it changing fast. Happy almost spring!

Suezy Proctor said...

What a great read! I've never been there Jill. When I come home for a visit - this is the place we must go to...yes... for breakfast!!!!

jill said...

Suezy, would love to take you there for brekkie!

Anonymous said...

Hah- I know Georgia's- GREAT desserts!​

John said...

H'mmm... I think, that your wonderful blog is making me hungry!

Anonymous said...

Jill, Benjamin and the gang at hatfield and dawson agree that this is a great lunch spot. Mary lou

Paul G said...

I'm inspired to go back...

jill said...

Mary Lou, glad the HatDaw gang agrees!
John, thanks!
Paul, yea, we should do another hiker's breakfast.

Lesley said...

I had no idea... but I'll make a point of trying the breakfast!

jill said...

Hey Lesley! Yes, in my 'hood! Looking forward to seeing you in May.

Anonymous said...

Mama Georgia used to take care of my brother by serving him big homemade meals when he lived next door for awhile. I will always be grateful to her. She has a very big heart.