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Nikos Gkouzgkounis, head chef at Romios Taverna Amsterdam

Nikos Gkouzgkounis


I was born in Larissa, the capital city of Thessaly, and the main provider of agricultural products in Greece. I have fond memories of my childhood, filled with flavors and smells of my mother’s food. I remember coming home from school and running to the kitchen to observe her cooking delicious meals, and picking food from the hot pan, risking to burn my fingers, just to get that delicious first bite. I remember our street where fishermen passed by to sell their catch and the greengrocer to sell his freshly picked vegetables and fruits. During summer our courtyard was turned into a food lab. It was the time when my mother and my grandmother would dry the olives, make the pickles, ferment trachanas and other homemade pastas. All these were my inspiration to turn into professional cooking and become a chef. 

At a young age I left Larissa and went to Athens in search of new experiences.
I started working in international cuisines and executed catering cooking on the Greek Islands for big weddings and feasts. Then in 2008 I left Athens to broaden my horizon again and arrived in the Netherlands. Eindhoven was my first stop where I was able straight away, to work as a cook. In 2011 I decided to study gastronomy at the cooking schools CVO Pro Tanera and De Rooi Pannen in Belgium.
Since then I have worked in several restaurants and cuisines all over the Netherlands and for the last 7 years in Amsterdam. Many cuisines and techniques drew my interest but I never lost my love for the Greek food in it’s most authentic form. I have always been an ambassador of the Greek cuisine and hospitality. I love to share the history, traditions, ingredients, techniques and benefits of the Greek cuisine with the world. For me Romios Taverna is a great platform to do that.



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