Fine Dining in the Old Town of Chania: Serenissima Restaurant

Not every culinary experience in Greece is about tzatziki and tavernas. Fine dining has a place too, and it’s one of a kind. While wandering the tiny alleys of Chania’s Old Town you are bound to find many hidden gems, Serenissima Restaurant is one of them. Surrounded by the austere Venetian walls of the dining room space, at Serenissima’s table, you will discover one of the best restaurants in Chania, if not the best.

FINE DINING IN CHANIA CRETE

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CRETE ESSENTIALS
Last-minute plans? Check these top picks

Where to stay in Crete
For a boutique experience, Casa Delfino in Chania or Avli in Rethymnon (luxury). Mrs. and Mr. White (affordable luxury) is a gorgeous resort near Chania. Budget trip around the island? Check Archipelagos in Rethymnon or Sofia Hotel in Heraklion. Hostel type? No problem! The best options are So Young Hostel in Heraklion and Cocoon City Hostel in Chania.

Top-rated tours in Crete
Boat Cruise to Balos Lagoon & Gramvousa from Kissamos Port (Bestselling tour from US$ 29.65).
Samaria Gorge Trek: Full-Day Excursion from Rethymno (Another best-seller, from US$ 36.73).
From Ierapetra: Boat Cruise to Chrissi Island (From US$ 27.25).
Day Trip to Elafonisi Island from Chania (From US$ 41).
Knossos Palace: Pre-Booked E-Ticket & Smartphone Audio Tour (Check Knossos at your own pace, from US$ 19.34).
Spinalonga Boat Trip from Elounda Port (From US$ 14.50).

Crete by car
By far the best way to discover the island. I use both Discover Cars and Rentalcars.com to reach far off places where my old jalopy won’t take me.

Are you covered?
For complete peace of mind, it’s always better to have travel insurance. Check quotes on World Nomads.

Three items you need in Crete
Don’t forget your daypack for beach days and excursions. Add a good map, the Lonely Planet Guide, or get a copy of my own guide to West Crete!

Need more info? Head to this page with my favorite resources or join my Facebook Group!

Serenissima Restaurant in Chania’s Old Town

Entrance serenissima restaurant
Serenissima, the best place for fine dining in Chania’s Old Town.

The elegant atmosphere of the restaurant perfectly matches the culinary proposals of the ever-changing menu. The set is a unique Venetian building, the 6th oldest in Chania’s Old Town, which dates back to approximately 1550.

In this environment, Serenissima proposes a cutting edge menu made of fresh Cretan ingredients and a touch of French expertise.

The Restaurant

A dedicated kitchen staff, led by the young Cretan chef Iosif Petrof, create exciting and sophisticated dining experiences.

It’s been two years since my first dinner at Serenissima Restaurant and I can’t wait to meet Chef Petrof again. Every explosive flavor I tasted during that evening is still fresh in my memory. And each of the unexpected ingredients.

Dining room Serenissima restaurant
Elegant interiors add to the intimate atmosphere (Photo courtesy: Serenissima Restaurant).

Tête-à-tête: Chef Iosif Petrof

Chef Iosif Petrof, Serenissima restaurant, Chania

He receives me with the cordiality and simplicity you would expect from an old-time friend, and not from a creative genius. Or maybe yes.

Maybe it’s in the simplest things in life where magic can be found. And this man knows how to work wonders

Chef Iosif Petrof’s background includes three years of culinary arts studies at the Institut Paul Bocuse in Lyon, France and over 10 years working in some of the most important kitchens of France and London.

He came back to his island about five years ago. In Chania, he teaches a young generation of future local chefs but also enjoys creating a plethora of surprising dishes.

“First of all, we cook for us”, he says, “because what we don’t want is to get bored”. Behind this statement rests a menu that changes completely every 20 days.

When it comes to the Cretan culinary traditions, Iosif cannot help comparing it to French cuisine: “The way of life in Crete is simple. Likewise, to a simple way of life corresponds more simple food.”

However, and above all, one could describe his cuisine as anything but simple.

Chef Petrof manages to combine plain local products. And he turns them into spectacular works of art, not only from the visual viewpoint.

>>Check the best Airbnbs in Chania Old Town<<

Inside Serenissima’s Kitchen

Chef Petrof works with an even younger team of fewer than 10 people – six of them in the kitchen. Every day, they bring Chania‘s proposal of restaurants to a whole new level.

At the restaurant, it is possible to dine à la carte. On the other hand, it is also possible to choose one of the creative menus: Terre, Mer, and Vegan (earth, sea, and vegan).

The menu includes a selection of local and international cheese as well. The wine list has been handpicked by their certified sommelier to partner with every dish, and it includes some of the best local Cretan wines as well as Greek and international labels.

Their sommelier will guide you to choose the perfect wine to combine with your dinner.

Fine dining in Chania's Old Town. Eel by Iosif Petrof, chef at Serenissima Restaurant
Eel, two versions, fine dining in Chania. (From Instagram @petrofiosif)

And you? Have you ever been to Chania? And if so, have you tried this experience? Let me know in the comments below! Also, you can click here to book this fine dining experience in Chania.

Are you into cooking?
>>Check the best Greek cookbooks<<

Are you ready to explore Greece? It can be the trip of your lifetime. Get in touch if you need extra help to plan your itinerary. If you happen to also tour West Crete, check this guide. You’ll find detailed info about where to go, what to see, where to eat, and more!

Want more? Join my Private Facebook Group to connect with like-minded travelers who love Crete as much as you do!

Coming to Crete any time soon? These resources will help you organize the trip!

Start by reading these helpful tips to plan a trip to Crete, which covers details such as when it’s best to travel, what documents you need, or how to get a SIM card. Check family holidays in Crete if you travel with kids.

To visit Crete’s heavenly beaches, check my guide to the best beaches in Crete. Discover what region is best to stay or check what things you can do in Crete.

For updated information about the island, join my private group on Facebook, or get my West Crete Guide!

Finally, make sure you’ve got everything you for a hassle-free trip!

I never move around Crete without my Osprey backpack, a sturdy, light, roomy, and super comfortable travel partner I just love. To visit villages, sites, and museums instead, I carry this little crossbody bag.

When driving around, I pack my Crete Michelin map and my Nikon D7200. In Summer I also carry good sunscreen lotion, the sun on the island can be pretty aggressive.

Airfares to Crete can change from one airline to the other, make sure to compare prices with a powerful search engine. Planes are fast, but nothing like the romantic experience of traveling by sea in Greece. Direct Ferries has great ticket deals to reach Crete from Athens or to visit other Greek islands.

If I need to book accommodation, I personally use different search engines. Booking.com
and Hotels.com are my go-to options.
Sometimes, the best way to make the most of your time on Crete is to join an organized tour. GetYourGuide has top-rated tours to save time and money. From cooking lessons to archaeological site tours, skip-the-line attractions, and airport transfer!

Do you have everything you need? Then you just have to get ready to discover Crete, Greece’s most beautiful island!

If you want to read further about Crete check these posts

If you would like to learn everything about the practical aspects of planning a trip to Crete, you should also check what to pack for a road trip around Crete and this crazy useful guide to renting a car and driving on the island. This 3-week-in-Crete itinerary is super flexible and can be adapted for less (or even more) time on the island. However, you might already know that the island is quite big, and it’s not always easy to decide which region to visit or where to stay. I’ve written a post about the best regions to stay in Crete according to your interests and travel style, and it’s a must-read before your trip.

Once on the island, make sure you check some of the best archaeological sites in Crete as well as the stunning Balos Beach, on the western coast. Make some time to discover Crete’s beautiful monasteries and to taste the most delicious street food in Chania while exploring the Turkish district in the old town!

Would you like to try this place?
Let me know in the comments below!ow in the comments below!

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FINE DINING IN CHANIA CRETE
FINE DINING IN CHANIA CRETE
Gabi Ancarola | The Tiny Book

About the Author

Hola! I’m Gabi. Welcome to The Tiny Book – Crete Travel Blog! I moved to Crete to explore the island all year round. I love taking pictures and driving on the mountain roads of Crete. I’m a beach freak and on this island I’ve found heaven on earth!


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