Food critic

The following review appears in The Washington Post’s 2019 Fall Dining Guide.


Bouyiourdi — baked feta cheese with onions, tomatoes, chili flakes and pickled mini bell peppers. (Nostos/Nicole Pagonis)

(Good/Excellent)

Greece remains on my bucket list. Meantime, I trek to Tysons for the sunshine and seafood I expect I’ll encounter when I make it to the cradle of Western civilization. If there’s a lighter taramasalata out there, I have yet to taste it. The restaurant’s whip of fish roe, lemon juice and olive oil, scooped up with warm pita, could pass for a cloud. Nostos is where I also come for whole fish, typically sweet-fleshed branzino, filleted by a server with surgical precision and presented with horta — pleasantly bitter boiled greens — and roast potatoes kissed with lemon and oregano.

You’ll be greeted by someone who acts as if they’ve been expecting your company and led to a linen-dressed table where the walls are dressed with black and white photographs of fishermen or famous faces (Anthony Quinn mid-dance) from earlier times. Strategically placed olive branches and a palette of white and gray whisper “Greece,” as do lamb ribs propped up with smoky eggplant salad, and a wedge of tender orange cake. General manager Angela Pagonis says her family has a vision: “We want to bring Greece here.” Sure enough, meals at Nostos edge diners closer to the islands.

2.5 stars

Nostos: 38100 Boone Blvd., Vienna. 703-760-0690. nostosrestaurant.com .

Open: Dinner Monday through Saturday, lunch Tuesday through Friday.

Price: Small plates $8-$18, large plates $23-$39.

Sound check: 74 decibels / Must speak with raised voice.