As visitors to New York City, we were aware of Astoria’s reputation for Greek seafood. This trip, with 8 days of eating, meant more restaurant research and we found Hamido Seafood. What a treat!
They follow the seafood market model: an iced display with whole fish splayed out. We chose a Dorade and, given octopus was sold out, calamari. The fish was baked with an herbed olive oil and the calamari grilled. Once you pick your fish, you sit and order sides: we chose a mezze assortment.
A very nice touch, especially in the heat wave of our visit, was the pitcher of ice water filled with crushed ice, cucumber, mint and lemon. Very refreshing in the midst of the 95 degree heat wave.
The mezze arrived with thick, fluffy pits. There was tahini sauce, babaganough, moussaka and roasted potatoes. They were all quite good with the potatoes and moussaka the standouts. The moussaka was baked eggplant, zucchini, very spicy peppers and herbs. All was haltingly soft yet still toothsome. The potatoes had sweet red peppers and herbs. Again the potatoes were perfectly soft but not overcooked or soggy. The baba was loaded with garlic and very rich. The tahini sauce was delicious.
The calamari came first, well charred on the grill and perfectly cooked. Perhaps the best thing of the meal. The fish was nicely, if unevenly cooked. The cavity had been rubbed with a green herb oil which really set off but did not cover up the fish. The fish was perfectly good on the bottom side and the belly portion of the top. But the dorsal portion was a touch dry. Having cooked thousands of dorade over the years, I am not sure how they got 75% perfect and one bit dry. But a dunk in tahini and spritz of lemon made up for the slight flaw.
We sat on the patio and took our time as it was the downhill portion of the evening. We chatted with a neighboring table: an Indian couple. That, plus chatting with our server and the manager made for a social evening.
This meal reminded me if Italian seafood I have dined on in Venice and Naples. What a pleasant find. And this very generous dinner was $65. We will be back. Would love to go with others to try more stuff. We are here through saturday night and thinking about a second trip.