Vyronia Border Station
Vyronia is a hamlet in the region of Serres north of Lake Kerkini, which despite its size is linked with one of the most important events in modern Greek history. At the end of the Second Balkan War (July-August 1913), it was the seat of the Greek High Command. And at the Vyronia Station, on the railway line between Thessaloniki and Constantinople, which the Ottomans had constructed in 1896, the then King Constantine I and Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos, in a rare moment of agreement, negotiated the terms of a truce with Bulgaria, under its ancient plane trees.
In 2013, precisely 100 years after the historic meeting, a pilot in the Greek Air Force, Lefteris Savvidis from nearby Petritsi, ‘landed’ on the tracks near the station and managed to save it by turning it into a lovely taverna serving local specialities with a shop selling local products.
The Border Station (“Methoriakos Stathmos” in Greek) as the new taverna is called is a quiet spot, shaded by the same towering plane trees under which the two leaders and their Bulgarian counterparts sat. And it looks like the setting for a film by Theodoros Angelopoulos. By now its fame has spread way beyond the borders.
Among the first courses we singled out – as representative of the local cuisine – bouyourdi, kavourmas with eggs, a platter intended to accompany ouzo (all their ouzos are from the Serres area), a range of pies like lahmacun, lahpetzou, tsimenli, peinirpasta and mushroom pie, while of the main courses we were tempted by Tzoumayia sausages (pork sausages from a village near Lake Kerkini called Irakleia or Tzoumayia), buffalo kebabs with yogurt, kandavlo (souvlaki) of buffalo meat, fried rabbit’s liver, a fry up with pork and smoked trout.