Spreading Greek Goodness: Chef Maria Loi Helps Feed DC’s Homeless


Greece may be in crisis, but Greeks and their desire and spirit to help certainly are not. Chef Maria Loi, owner of the eponymous restaurant in Manhattan’s Upper West Side took a day off of work and headed to Washington DC where she participated in a project hosted by the Greek Embassy to feed hundreds of the city’s homeless people at Miriam’s Kitchen, a Washington-based nonprofit providing services for the homeless.

The event, organized to mark the Greek presidency of the European Union, was held in conjunction with Kellari Taverna in DC and the Chef’s Club of Greece and spearheaded with the support of Greek celebrity chef Maria Loi and her eponymous restaurant in New York City.

Chef Loi created a menu of traditional Greek recipes for the city’s underprivileged, including Dolmadakia (Cretan grape leaves stuffed with rice and herbs), Horiatiki (a traditional Greek salad), Orzo me Kima (a rustic pasta dish), and baklava for dessert.

“This place is good food and love,” said Maria Loi, an executive chef in New York and an ambassador of Greek gastronomy who shared the healthy Mediterranean food of her homeland with more than 200 people at Miriam’s Kitchen in D.C. on Feb. 25.

Every year, Miriam’s Kitchen provides meals and social services to 3,500 chronically homeless people and advocates for permanent long-term housing for those in need.

“The Greek Embassy in D.C. provided a fantastic example that this commitment extends even to the global community in Washington. It was our pleasure to experience Greek culture through the embassy’s generous service to our chronically homeless guests,” said Tom Murphy, director of communications at Miriam’s Kitchen.


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