The family behind several Greektown dining and entertainment establishments is opening Symposia, a Mediterranean-inspired restaurant on Tuesday, Oct. 4 inside the Atheneum Suite Hotel and Conference Center at 1000 Brush St.
In a media announcement, the Papas family — who in addition to owning the Atheneum, also operate Pegasus Taverna, A Bar (inside the hotel), as well as the now defunct Mosaic and Santorini Estiatorio — says Symposia “will build on our commitment to preserving the cultural aspects of the area, as well as enhancing the community moving forward.”
To head the kitchen, the Papas family brought in executive chef Elliot Patti, who highlights Greek, Italian, and Spanish culinary traditions. Dishes include roasted beet with whipped feta, pickled strawberry, green harissa, Spanish octopus with romesco, yukon potato, and chorizo Iberico; prawn bucatini with Greek olive oil, garlic, blistered tomato, confit lemon, Kalamata olives, fried parsley; Australian lamb chop, and more. ; Amish Half Bird, with harissa, crème fraiche and an olive oil cake with pistachio, orange, honey-whipped Greek yogurt. To drink, the restaurant features a wine list designed to complement the menu, representing several wine regions throughout California and Europe. St. Clair Shores-based Olon Interior designed the space, evoking a Mediterranean landscape, and just outside the restaurant in the Atheneum lobby diners can check out artwork depicting Plato’s “Symposium.”
Hurricane Fiona relief
Chef Omar Anani, owner of the award-winning Moroccan-inspired restaurant Saffron de Twah, is known for giving his time — and skills in the kitchen — to help out folks in need. In the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona, the powerful storm that ravaged much of Puerto Rico and left the entire island population without power, Anani joined the nonprofit World Central Kitchen as part of its efforts help feed the hundreds of thousands of people throughout the Caribbean impacted by the devastating storm.
In an Instagram post published over the weekend says that Anani was among a group of others who helped serve 60,000 meals during a two-week period, while the rest of the Saffron crew held things down at the restaurant in Detroit. Anani tells Eater that he left for Higuëy, Dominican Republic on Monday, Sept. 26 through Saturday, Oct. 1. He was joined by a crew of more than a dozen who prepared meals that were then distributed by boat, helicopter, and car throughout the storm-ravaged region.
Anani is among a growing number of chefs who’ve taken the time in recent weeks to lend help to flood-ravaged Puerto Rico. In Chicago, more than 30 chefs got together on Sept. 28 for the Chicago Chefs Cook for Puerto Rico fundraising tasting event at the National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture in that city’s Humboldt Park neighborhood.