The Flatiron district of Manhattan has become a bevy of great restaurants with a diverse amount of cuisine opportunities for you to indulge in. There is always something new that is popping up in this bustling part of NYC, and their newest neighbor just might be its most unique yet. Merakia, location on W. 21st Street between 5th and 6th Avenues, pairs the words “Greek” and “Steakhouse” and does so in a beautiful way.
Merakia is just the short form version of the actual full name of the location (sort of like Cher or Madonna). The fully formed name is Merakia: Green MountainThief Spithouse + Steak. Interesting, right? Greek MountainThief was the nickname given to members of Greek bands of mountain highwaymen (“Klephts,” meaning thieves) and irregular militia (“Armatoloi”) who were the revolutionary backbone of the Greek War of Independence of 1821. When fighting the Ottomans in the mountainous terrain, these MountainThieves would feed themselves by stealing sheep and other live-stock grazing on the mountains and cooking them on a makeshift spit. Lovely!
Essentially, they want you to enjoy this sort of “spitfire” cuisine as MountainThief enjoyed doing so 200 years ago. Just a bit more modern with the internet and whatnot. Merakia comes from the Greek term known as something with soul, creativity and love. I truly believe all of this after I stopped by to experience firsthand just how wonderful this place really is.
One word to describe the space at Merakia is “moody”. There are elements to it that make it seem more romantic and dimly lit, but the lighting at the bar and towards the back still gives it a bit of an upbeat vibe that gel with each other very well.
The food that we were served really executes the whole “Greek Steakhouse” aspect completely, and this sort of term could easily become one that is new and trending in the new year and beyond.
Some of my favorite items that we were presented with included Keftedes, which were ground angus beef meatballs with citrus mini yogurt, barley rusk and cherry tomatoes as well as Manitaria Yemista, which translates to oven-roasted portabella with spinach, feta, leeks and red pepper. Simply delicious.
They also have a fantastic line of meat options that are lamb heavy and ones for people who are not so much a fan of the meats. Overall, this spot could easily crank its heat to hot as it continues to blossom and I look forward to seeing where Merakia goes.
More information here.