My final two weeks in Athens were mainly spent studying for finals and eating foods that I wouldn't be able to consume in my new city. 4 of my last 14 lunches were spent at Viva Argentine on the East side, in front of Kroger and next to the Shell station.
Friendly staff, yummy foods, college friendly prices, ESPN and air conditioning made it a great afternoon getaway from looking at notes and books all morning long. All of their lunch items, which were about $7 each, come with a big drink.
The Lomo con Papa Fritas (pictured above) is a plate of sirloin steak bits with red onions and tomatoes on top of a bed of fries. The steak is tender, juicy and has a slight kick to it, just enough for you to feel some spice.
(left: lentil soup, right: beef empanada)
Their soups, butternut squash bisque and lentil vegetable, are both good although I prefer the lentil soup over the former. The butternut squash bisque could use a bit of help from some sugar but it's still quite good. Both recommended.
As for the empanadas, I tried both the ground beef and ham & cheese varieties. The ham and cheese is a much improved version of the sorry HotPockets we college students often consume and the ground beef while somewhat dry inside is easily remedied with the salsa verde which comes with this empanada. The empanada, soup and a big drink for $6-7. Can you say steal?
Viva also has an Argentine cheesesteak that they make which is very tasty. Tender, juicy pieces of ribeye beef, white American cheese, tomatoes, chimichurri, caramelized onions and arugula in between soft bread. As if this wasn't a meal on its own, it comes with a side of chips also to complete the deal!
Lastly, don't forget to grab some of Gaby's cupcakes as dessert after your meal. They sell regular sized cupcakes and these teeny, tiny, mini ones. They're made fresh throughout the day, moist and not too sweet. Perfect ending to your meals.
Thanks for the lunches Viva! I'll be sure to come back and visit again when I'm in Athens.