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Not far into the introduction of one of my Greek cookbooks, the following assertion appears: "The truth is that the Greeks taught everyone else how to cook and eat." After which the students outstripped the teacher, I couldn't help thinking - a conclusion the authors almost reluctantly come to a few paragraphs later when they admit that, " ... modern Greek food may lack a certain polish when compared to some of its sister cuisines in the Mediterranean basin." But they follow up by noting, "It may well be that the very simple character of Greek home cooking is what makes it so appealing." If we can add restaurant cooking to the pot, John the Greek fits the;model to a tau. The atmosphere is travel-poster plain; the service is smart but familiar and the food, well, the best of it is homey and utterly unpretentious, except for the all-Greek wine list.;- Ron Bechtol

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