Today I called in at the Ilirian a new Greek cafe/bistro on Church Street, Eccles located in the old NatWest building for a chat with the owner Ervis, who kindly told me about the new venue and the delights on offer.
"I chose this building because of it's wonderful architecture which fitted in so well with my plans for the Cafe/Bistro, also because the word, Ecclesia in Greek means, "gathering", it seemed a natural choice.
"I want my customers to feel that they have a taste of Greece when they come here, with traditional, home cooked, food and drinks for them, simple and not overpriced, a place they can sit in comfort and enjoy good food.
"My mother is the pastry chef and makes the best food I have tasted, you be the judge! also we have a fine selection of pies, pastries, pizza's. home made bread, pretzels, savouries, coffees's also traditional Greek mountain tea, fruit flavoured tea for the more adventurous. milk shakes and even imported Greek soft drinks.
"Incidentally I have the finest pizza chef in Greater Manchester and if you can find me a better one, I will give you the keys to the business".
I have to admit, first impressions are important and I was well impressed with the cafe, it's both spotless and well laid out with seating for some 24 people, additionally it features an access ramp which has been installed for customers with disability problems, and it all comes with friendly customer service.
Most importantly, the array of food was mouth watering with traditional Greek pies and pastries which are all hand made, daily on the premises by family members on display at the counter.
Indulge yourself on Spanakopita a Greek savoury spinach pie, Bougatas with Mizithra Feta cheese, Mykonian, sausage pie, Traditional Twirled pie with chicken and four cheeses or Creek County Pie with Chicken Graviera and Red Pepper all for the bargain price of £2 a slice.
For those with a sweet tooth, Ervis recommends the Portokalopita Orange Pie with Vanilla Cream, or may I suggest, the Galaktoboureko Custard Pie?
The Ilirain which is named after after, Ervis's son is a breath of culinary fresh air, and is just what Eccles needed, a more cosmopolitan vibe and a break from the traditional café fare which prevails in the area.
Also I am told that permission has been given for outside seating for 10 people, in the summer so you can enjoy a delicious slice of Greece on a plate and watch the world go by, sounds idyllic and I for one will be a regular customer.
Call in, I can guarantee you will not be disappointed , trust me!
It is open, Monday to Friday 7am - 7pm and Saturday and Sunday 9am - 7pm
Unit 1, 49 Church Street, Eccles, M30 0AF
For further info visit their website Ilirian Greek Taste Eccles - Cafe or phone on 0161 787 992