Claire and Abby Get a “Taste of Athens”
I never know what I’ll run into when I visit the grounds of the Zappeion. Found in the middle of Athens’s National Garden, just a couple of minutes’ walk from the CYA Academic Center, the hall hosts dozens of exciting cultural and artistic events year-round. Earlier in September, fellow MediaLab intern Abby and I headed over for just one of these many occasions: the Taste of Athens gourmet food festival!
When we entered, we each got a voucher which could be exchanged for an appetizer-sized dish. There were stands around the park serving dishes from top restaurants in the Athens area, giving us plenty to choose from. Abby opted for a colorful stuffed pasta shell in alfredo sauce; I got a stew-like “pork marmalade” spread on a piece of bread with caramelized onions. We both tried our first-ever oysters after noticing a stand with free samples, and ended our night with gelato at a pop-up table.
There was a festive feeling as electronic music pumped through the air and live cooking demonstrations captivated an audience at the foot of the hill. As Abby and I took time to explore the rows of tents, we caught sight of everything from crafts for kids to colorful mugs for sale to booths for specialty drinks. With so much to do, it’s no wonder that the full event ran from September 19th to 22nd.
CYA students are lucky to have a thriving event center like the Zappeion just a two-minute walk from the academic buildings. Abby and I had both passed through the grounds before, catching sight of a Brazilian Day event and the city’s 48th Book Festival on our walks. I stopped by the Art Athina exhibition inside the hall itself with my “Art and Craft of Curating” class. There’s even an open-air movie theater close by, a popular form of entertainment for warm nights in Athens. I’d highly recommend that all CYAers check out the list of upcoming Zappeion events, or just walk through in their free time. You’d be surprised by what you might see–or taste!