OPA! Greek Kouzina Restaurant opens in Guaynabo
OPA! Greek Kouzina Restaurant, which offers authentic Greek food, recently opened at Plaza Real Shopping Center in Guaynabo, following an initial investment of $150,000.
The eatery — whose menu merges traditional Greek food with the latest trends in this cuisine — generated more than 25 direct and indirect jobs, Owner Alexander Lignos said.
As a child, Lignos spent his summers and free time with his father, Greek Chef Lefteris Lignos — born on the Greek island of Santorini and who moved to Puerto Rico where he established the first Greek restaurant, Zorba the Greek, in 1973.
“Since I was little, I loved to cook and serve clients at my father’s restaurant. There, I developed my passion for sharing the Greek culture in Puerto Rico and the hospitality that characterizes it. It fills me with satisfaction to see customers enjoying Greek food, remembering their trips to Greece,” said Lignos.
The restaurant, which seats up to 66 people, has a bar and outdoor terrace. It also has a to-go area in its parking lot that allows customers to order by phone and pick up. The eatery locally sources the ingredients used in its menu “to support Puerto Rico’s economy and get greater freshness,” he said.
The restaurant’s menu was created with Greek Chef Alexandros Kardassis, who has been recognized as one of the “Top Ten Chefs of Athens” with five Michelin, Great Food & Value awards. The menu also includes recipes from the Lignos’s family, and they are prepared daily by Executive Chef Fernando Soto, who has more than 23 years of experience in Puerto Rico, Florida, and the US Virgin Islands.