Rachel Reeves

Opa! Gyros and grape leaves

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greek food

A South Bay institution for more than 40 years, the Greek Festival in Redondo Beach draws thousands of revelers both Greek and non-Greek who flock to St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church for good company, live music, and some mouthwatering homemade Baklava.

This year St. Katherine is undergoing renovations, so while the festival won’t be as big as it’s been in past years, its spirit is guaranteed to be just as lively. Come July 12, the church’s open courtyard will again transform into an old Greek village, proffering the smells of marinating lamb, a lit-up dance floor, and a gathering of boisterously happy people.

Each year parishioners hand-prepare food for thousands of festival-goers. Festival staples include souvlakia (marinated skewers), Pastitsio (a Greek lasagna), Gyro (beef and lamb in a pita), Dolmathes (stuffed grape leaves), and Loukomathes (Greek doughnuts), and grazers can wash it all down with Greek beer, wine, and coffee. The home cooking satisfies the stomach, and the live music and dancing awaken the soul.

St. Katherine is located at 722 Knob Hill in Redondo Beach, between Pacific Coast Highway and Prospect. Festival hours are 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, July 12; noon to 10 p.m. on Saturday, July 13; and noon to 9 p.m. on Sunday, July 14.

Admission is $2, $1 for seniors, and free for kids under 12. For more information see sbgreekfestival.com or call (310) 540-2434.

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