Despite having lived in Philadelphia since 2010, as of the 15th of September, I still had not participated in Philly's Restaurant Week. Restaurant Week always seemed too expensive and time-consuming to be worth the food, and I was right.
However, that doesn't mean that dinner at Estia, a fancy but laid-back Greek restaurant, was not enjoyable. Quite the contrary! It was one of the best social events of my college life, shared with the group of friends who frequented my dorm's computer lab. Yes, apparently, solid friendships can form among strangers when we all spend 10+ hours a week in a computer lab for 2-3 years. Especially when they nonchalantly walk in on me passed out over my computer science notes.
The food was delicious, and the atmopshere and service were excellent. The walls were decorated with giant chunks of rock, and there were linen curtains at the booths and an open kitchen.
Appetizers included grilled octopus (fresh, fleshy, and slighty charred tasting), or salad. The grilled octopus also had some endive triangles, which was pleasant because it is not a leaf I commonly find at restaurants.
The main choices were juicy (also slightly charred) lamb with a sauce I didn't like, an entire almost-deboned fish, or a vegetarian dish that the server did not recommend.
Dessert was either honey semolina cake or baklava, with exactly 1 raspberry (although, possibly by accident, my friend got both a raspberry AND a blueberry). The honey cake was disappointingly dry and crumbly, and the gelato did not make up for it.
Restaurant Week meant that we could get a dinner meal for $35 (appetizer, main, dessert), which ultimately amounted to around $46. Yummy.