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Reserve at Nemea
96 South First Street
San Jose, CA 95113
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$30 and under
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Hours of Operation:
Lunch: M-F 11:00am-2:30pm
Dinner: Su 4:00-10:00pm; M-W 5:00pm-10:00pm; Th-Sa 5:00pm-11:00pm
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
Fridays and Saturday there will be live Greek music.
Major transit accesible.
Nemea validates for San Jose City owned parking lot across San Fernando.
A word from Nemea
Hercules defeated the Nemean lion and then probably enjoyed an excellent glass (or amphora) of Nemean wine. Nemea is a noted wine & food capitol of Pelopennese in southern Greece. Our food is influenced primarily by the flavors of the Pelopennese with accents from all of Greece. We boast an amazing
wine list with many great wines from Greece, the Mediterranean and around the world. Come in and let our mixologists make you a craft cocktail or enjoy a well made classic martini as you enjoy the best Greek food in San Jose! We look forward to serving you.
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The food and service were
wonderful but they had musicians playing at 630 pm that everyone thought were too loud. Even our server had trouble communicating because it was so loud. It really damped the overall experience because we had to yell for a table of 4 to be heard. We weren't even near the performers. The server asked the musicians to turn down the noise level but that never happened. I would only reccomend people go if they call ahead and ask about musiscans since it made for am annoying experience. Food is wonderful. Eggplant appetizer, shrimp risotto, pita, lamb, strawberry cobbler were all stand outs."
Dined on 4/11/2014
We were there last Wednesday
evening for a 6:45 reservation. Pros: Our waiter was excellent when we saw him. But, he was way over stretched and we didn't see him enough. Nice ambiance. Food is well presented. Cons: The rest of the staff performed very poorly. We didn't get water until we hailed someone down to ask for it. Bread wasn't very good. They brought our appetizers before the wine arrived. We had to ask for the wine before we got it. The food itself is good but not great. Bottom Line: There are better Greek restaurants in San Jose and they do not cost more."
Dined on 4/9/2014
I think this restaurant was voted
#1 on Trip Advisor for San Jose so we were expecting a lot. The food was good but not exceptional. Brussels sprout salad would have been good if the sprouts had been fully roasted (they were undercooked and steamed). Lamb riblets were good but very greasy and not like lamb loin chops. Taramosalata was OK but not great. Sprats were good, but too many - most "mezze" dishes were too large for this type of dish. Would go back but not in a hurry. Wine flights were very good."
Dined on 4/5/2014
Proposed to my now beautiful
fiancé . They accommodated my arrangements perfectly and made the night special for a special young woman of mine. Thanks Nemea. I will be baack soon."
Dined on 4/5/2014
We've been to Nemea before, and
once again we had a delicious meal with lots of variety. There were four of us, so we were able to sample many different dishes, especially the appetizers. The portions were generous - or else we ordered too much food, because we had enough for lunch the next day. The lamb was tender and cooked to perfection. The smelt were crunchy and yummy. The Greek salad was huge, and more than enough for two people. Our friends had never been there before, and they were also impressed and want to eat there again. Our server was pleasant and efficient, and he made sure that changes were made to accommodate my gluten free diet. We will definitely return. It's a perfect restaurant for dinner before the show at the REP."
Dined on 4/5/2014
Loved the food but the noise level
made it difficult to carry a conversation."
Dined on 4/2/2014
My husband and I enjoyed a
wonderful dinner at Nemea before the Sharks game on Tuesday. The food was fabulous, great seasoning and cooked to perfection. The whole fish dish was amazing with the sautéed greens and roasted potatoes. Our Greek salad was seasoned perfectly and the cucumbers and tomatoes were fresh. We enjoyed the Greek yogurt drizzled with honey and served with fresh berries. Would go back in a heartbeat."
Dined on 4/1/2014
Came here for my birthday dinner
with my parents. We had a reservation and they even sat our party a little early while waiting for the rest of the group to come. The food here is hearty and works well for late, tapas-style dinner and drinking. The decor is warm, open and inviting. I found it to be a little loud in the main dining area but I think that there are quieter corners of the restaurant -ironically- I think the bar area may be good for a more intimate meal."
Dined on 3/27/2014
Dinner for two on a Saturday
night. The noise level was higher than we had experienced before because there was a big private party right next to us, but nothing too loud. We had lamb meat balls and octopus for starters, followed by scallops with risotto and moussaka. Just like the other times I have eaten at Nemea, the food was flavorful and delicate; paired with the right sides. The peppers served with the lamb meatballs added just the right touch of sweetness, and the octopus was divine - soft with just a touch of crunch. The scallops were seared to perfection, and the risotto creamy and fragrant with mushrooms. Our server was attentive, as were the rest of the staff."
Dined on 3/22/2014
This restaurant reminded me of the
places back in chicago's greek town. The best part is the desserts. My favorite is Galaktobouriko - vanilla custard wrapped in layers of crispy phyllo. That is a MUST TRY."
Dined on 3/22/2014
We went to Nemea for our friend's
birthday party. The food was excellent, as well as the service. The only down side for us is that it was a little bit noisy. We will definitely go back to this place."
Dined on 3/22/2014
Although I was looking forward to
having my favorite Eggplant Tower, they are not offering this at the lunch hour... I was disappointed and instead I ordered the Lamb 'gyro' sandwich and it had 'chunks' of lamb instead of 'slices' of lamb, which I had difficulty chewing and it was entirely too much 'bread/pita'. However, what I could not eat at lunch, I took home and had for my dinner that night. One of my luncheon companions had the Flatbread Greek 'pizza' and thoroughly enjoyed it. We also had the grape leaf rolls as an appetizer but we found them too mild in flavor... would have preferred more of a lemon taste."
Dined on 3/21/2014
We had lunch at Nemea, our first
time there. The food was very good, and an added plus was that we could hear each other well enough to carry on a conversation. We will definitely go back when we are in the area again."
Dined on 3/21/2014
San Jose's best Greek restaurant.
Sea Bass (with head and tail) is my favorite, but you cannot go wrong with anything on this menu. My wife loves the lamb chops or at least the pile of bones on the plate indicate so. Wait staff is attentive, knowledgeable and helpful. It can be a little loud given the large space, high ceilings, but the place is totally cool"
Dined on 3/20/2014
Nemea has the potential to be
great. DO NOT order the Mousakka; bad bad bad. 1. It's huge! Too much 2. It's not heated properly being so thick and in a ceramic pot 3. Lack of flavor. 4. Eggplant is undercooked and to thickly sliced. 5. one is forced to eat it down, once can't see the layers and eat it sideways like eating lasagne. Other dishes are good, desert is fantastic. Service is slow slow slow, though friendly. I do love the location and big space. Improve your food and service and you can be great. Been here twice, I am good for a long while before I come back. They do have a nice separte bar area."
Dined on 2/9/2014
I decided to take my vegetarian
boyfriend here for dinner (bad idea #1), and although their website states " The menu features rustic Greek cooking and offers seasonal and vegetarian dishes together with fresh fish indigenous to the Greek and Mediterranean seas, " there was only one vegetarian entree on the menu when we arrived (the menu online is from 2012... yeesh!). The risotto... where do I start... it was basically rice and peas. It was severely lacking in salt/spice, as was my moussaka. To call it risotto is a stretch. I ordered the self-titled "Nemea flatbread" as an appetizer since it appeared to be vegetarian based on the menu's description, but when it arrived, it had lamb all over it. However, the service was amazing!!!!"
Dined on 3/14/2014
We greatly enjoyed this
restaurant. Two of us had drinks which were suitably exotic and very tasty. We had the saganaki (flaming cheese appetizer) and the octopus appetizer and both were delicious. I particularly liked the saganki - very tasty. We each had different entrees and all were excellent."
Dined on 3/15/2014
We love Nemea! Great food, great
service. Friday night was fun with the Greek band playing and a few people dancing. It made it seem like a somewhat authentic Greek experience. We had the souvlaki, which was cooked perfectly and the moussaka, which has a really nice béchamel sauce. The sorbet for dessert was one of my favorites. Not a cheap evening but worth every bit for the 2 + hours we enjoyed there."
Dined on 3/14/2014
Great calamari and lamb chops!
Also I appreciated that when I called beforehand to ask about parking, he directed me to a lot for which they validate parking."
Dined on 3/1/2014
We had an excellent meal and great
service. Our server Danial, was very knowledgeable and personable and was really helpful in choosing our meal. The octapodi is incredible. The whole sea bass and the lamb chops were also excellent. We will definitely be back again."
Dined on 3/9/2014
Dined here for the first time.
Everything was great! Especially the octopus. Had to order it twice! Definitely coming back here! Service was excellent and the wine list was pretty decent! Can't wait til the next time that I am here. :)"
Dined on 3/6/2014
I was visiting San Jose for
meetings and ran across this spot. Got the night started right and ordered the Saganaki. One of my favorite Greek dishes (Opa!) and this place was spot on with how it was cooked. The group I was with had never tried that before and they couldn't get enough of it. Ordered the Lamb (medium rare) as my entree and it was fantastic. Overall this place was incredible and my guests enjoed it as well. I'll definitely keep going back when I'm visiting that area."
Dined on 3/5/2014
The waiter was a pro, wine by the
glass was excellent, octopus, brussel sprouts, and lamb chops were outstanding! We will return."
Dined on 3/7/2014
Had the double cut pork chop -
fantastic. Buddy had the ribeye, also great."
Dined on 3/4/2014
For a very special evening enjoy
the live Greek music on Friday nights. Food is beautifully prepared and delicious."
Dined on 2/28/2014
This is NOT your typical Greek
restaurant. I've been there twice and tried a wide variety of foods. I must say everything was pretty darn authentic and fresh. No canned dolmas here! Great decor and you can actually hear Greek music playing."
Dined on 2/24/2014
I've been to Nemea several times
for dinner, but this was my first time for lunch. As you might imagine, two women of a certain age ate salads. I had the horiatiki (traditional Greek salad with tomatoes, cucumbers and feta, which was excellent and almost more than I could finish. my friend had a Nemea salad with fruit and manouri cheese and she said it was delicious. We were greeted with a basket of good bread and a lavish serving of olives. I would add that we had excellent service. My only regret is that it was a business lunch . . . I would have loved to have spent a longer time and indulged a glass of wine, and several small plates. But such is life on a Wednesday. I will of course be back for dinner very soon :-)"
Dined on 2/26/2014
We loved the atmosphere, the
service, and most of all the food. We both had the beet salad. I've had a lot of beet salads and this was the best I've ever had. I had the risotto with prawns. Delish! My colleague had the braised lamb. It fell of the bone and had fantastic flavor."
Dined on 2/23/2014
Ambiance was great, as well as the
service. Food was good, wouldn't say it was amazing."
Dined on 8/2/2013
I hope we just hit Nemea on an off
day. My friend really enjoyed her meal or I would have rated this as poor. I am a huge greek food fan and my lunch was quite poor. The chicken was dry and lacking flavor. The paired starch tasted like it was drenched with cheap italian dressing. Very odd. .Even the Tzaiki was mediocre. The place is lovely inside"
Dined on 2/20/2014
I went to Nemea with my friend for
my birthday. It was my first time, and I was really happy with it. We ended up just having appetizers, but they were super good. We had the meatballs which were amazing, and the calamari, which was one of the best I've had. Not greasy, super fresh. We also had the brussel sprouts which were good. I have been craving the meatballs and calamari for 4 days now, so i may have to go back for more soon."
Dined on 2/20/2014
Food, service and ambience was all
very good. However, the band was too loud making if very difficult to hear the people in my dinner party."
Dined on 2/21/2014
Some dishes quite good. Scallops
excellent, pork chops dry and tough. Our waiter friendly and helpful, but fighting a slow kitchen on a busy Friday night. Very loud -- needs serious acoustic attention."
Dined on 2/21/2014
My husband and I had an
anniversary dinner at Nemea and found it pleasurable. We eat Greek food in Greece and are regulars at Evvia and Kokkari, so we know our skordalia (which sadly was NOT on the Nemea menu). Beet salad was nice, and a welcome change from the standard cucumber/tomato/feta horiatiki. We both had lamb, always a good way to measure a Greek spot. My lamb shank was large, tender and deliciously seasoned--with plenty to take home for lunch. My husband enjoyed the souvlaki, though found nothing remarkable about it. For wines, we chose the Greek flight, a fun way to explore three new tastes. Our server selected the sokolatina dessert for us, and the chef added some fancy touches for our anniversary. Overall: Poli kalo!"
Dined on 2/18/2014
We came to Nemea for a later
dinner (around 8:30 p.m.) after attending a conference all day at the Fairmont Hotel. There were a few parties still present, but certainly not full. We decided we would come based on other reviews, and it did not disappoint. The food was outstanding. I got the grilled chicken and colleagues got the lamb and the scallops. All were great, but the lamb was undoubtedly the best. And make sure you save room for dessert, as their version of beignets are out of this world! Above all, the service was the most phenomenal part and was the best we had while staying in San Jose. All of us highly recommended Nemea to our other colleagues at the conference."
Dined on 2/20/2014
Shrimp appetizer was delicious;
red pepper sauce was even better than the shrimp. Lamb chops & rib eye were perfect, with delicious greens. Baklava, fig ice cream & beignets were amazing. Dessert portions were huge. But with this caliber of food the service was lacking. No one went out of their way to welcome us, talk about the menu, check in often enough, ask if we wanted another drink, ask if we wanted dessert, etc. The empty appetizer and bread plates were left on the table when the entrees came. I would go back for the food, but it didn't give us a great impression of the management since the wait staff isn't up to par."
Dined on 2/17/2014
Despite having made a reservation,
the hostess had some difficulty seating us at an acceptable table. The wait staff were prompt in taking drink orders, but very slow in delivery. Generally, it seemed the restaurant was under-staffed for the volume they dealt with that night. Everyone in our party was extremely satisfied with their entree orders- taste, preparation, and serving size were all very nice. Fairly noisy , but perhaps to be expected for such a pleasant evening."
Dined on 2/17/2014
I am a frequent guest at
Nemea....each time bringing friends for the first time----on this particular evening (Sun 2/16) the service was not near as good as times before. I did realize as the night wore on---they were "short staffed" It will not affect my frequent patronage--however it was a tiny disappointment as I do take "service" into account when raving about a restaurant."
Dined on 2/16/2014
Solid all around- Food was
excellent and our server rocked it. Wife and I had the White & Red Greek wine flights, Lamb Meatballs for starters, Octopus Salad, and Lamb Shank with wild rice risotto all amazing. Then the dessert nemea special? topped it off- wish I would have got a port or espresso to cut the sweetness and end the night."
Dined on 2/13/2014
We ate at Nemea for the first time
before going to the Eagles concert. We had read the reviews and liked what we read. We fell in love with this restaurant and are headed back there after a show this weekend. The food was absolutely amazing!!!! We also loved the wine. Service was perfect too."
Dined on 1/29/2014
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