It is not common, to consider the terms gourmet and Greek food, well not until recently and William Dachris the founder of Grecian Purveyor an online Greek grocery store aims to change that. as he “specialises in the highest quality Greek food products”.

“We import, distribute and supply to end users, consumers, and retailers, including restaurants, cafes, and wholesale perspective.”

Dachris who was born and raised in Greece, has lived in Australia for the last 12 years and was between the United Kingdom and “other places”.

“I’ve lived outside of Greece for years, and I have lived in Greece in England for over 13 years and now Australia for about 12 years.”

He left a lucrative job in brand marketing in the UK to return to Greece. Like many of his generation, he saw opportunity after the nation’s economic collapse from 2010 to 2016.

Dachris has taken on a Herculean task to upend the view that European high-quality foodstuffs and beverages are the preserve of the Italians, French and Spanish.

Retsina Papagiannakos available from Grecian Purveyor. Photo: Supplied

“It’s one of the reasons I set up the company, I want to educate people and elevate the brand Greece from a food culture perspective, and that is what I’m doing daily.”

Greek quality food products have had a fillip over the last 10 years, especially in a post-financial crisis in Greece.

Young agricultural entrepreneurs, food, winemakers, oil producers, and beverage producers, restaurateurs have dug deep into the nation’s roots to showcase and elevate Greek food and beverage products.

Dachris points to the olive oil from the Sakellaropoulos Organic Farms near Sparta, Laconia, which “is featured now across many of Europe’s Michelin star restaurants.” He is part of the cultural, creative, and culinary revolution that has taken over Greece in the post-financial crisis period.

Dachris has made it his mission to deliver high-quality Greek food products and beverages. “It is part of my job, not just myself. Other people in the industry and within the Greek communities in Australia are trying to achieve exactly the same thing.”

“Greek food and Greek products should be seen at the same level of quality as Italian or the French, but that obviously doesn’t happen from one day to the next; it is a journey and continuous effort.”

Anasstasia small batch olive oil from Grecian Purveyor, Photo: Supplied

“I come from a corporate background in marketing and branding. I first started as a creative director, and then I did my master’s in marketing management and business management.”

He represents the green shoots that sprung in an economically devastated Greece – young, professional, articulate, multilingual and with an eye for quality.

He knew Greece had some high-quality food products and beverages but could have done better at marketing them.

“For example, Sakellaropoulos olive oils are regarded as some of the best olive oils in the world, they consistently topped Italian competitions and recently won in Monte Carlo, where Michelin star chefs vote.”

Greek olive oils, Dachris says, are “on top of the world – Michelin restaurants are now all using the highest quality oil, Greek”.

He is keen to make consumers aware of the “excellence” of authentic Greek food and “exquisite luxurious flavours”.

Dachris selects the best baklava, Greek wines, matsicha spirit and much more as part of the array he plies.

“Our goal is to help Australians discover authentic Greek cuisine and its gourmet nutrition and cooking ingredients and indulge in premium, genuine, high-quality products and delicacies from all over Greece.

“Our traditional Greek food artisans are passionate about natural and organic produce and share our philosophy and values,” he says and talks rhapsodically about the “unique honey” Greece produces and how organic farming is embedded in the Greek psyche.

Masticha spirit from Grecian Purveyor. Photo: Supplied

In many ways, the nature of migration to Australia, mainly from post-war rural and poor Greece has meant that our perception of Greek food has remained ossified and has not been “pushed beyond the souvlaki”.

Also, our working-class parents and grandparents could not afford or even find high-quality Greek food products in an Australia of the 50s, 60s and 70s.

He does recognise “a big trend of Greek restaurants that have taken great food to another level – and plenty of them in Melbourne”.

“Overall, there is a growth of Greek food culture and food in general, but it is going slowly, is a little better than it used to be, and there is a lot of room for growth.”

Cheese is another area where the French, Italians and Spaniards edge out the Greeks, but Dachris disagrees.

“There are Greek cheeses out there that are incredible there’s so many from Greece but they come here to Australia but are not available to the general Australian public.”

He relays how he went to a deli in Marrickville, and he found a specific cheese he says, “is amazing”, and I know where it comes from.

Dachris points to the “poor branding” effort in Greece.

“Greece has never really marketed itself in food at a level of the Italians or French, and I believe we compete easily with the Spanish now, but Italian and French have that brand name that we’re not there yet.”

Baklava gift box from Grecian Purveyor. Photo: Supplied

He sings the praises of the Greek government for “elevating the brand Greece on every level, Strategy from food, culture, and tourism.”

“Greece has moved so fast in the last five years is extraordinary. They’ve done a phenomenal job.”

Dachris says that there was no one in Australia “doing premium high-end product from Greece available to every Australian,” so his vision is to supply “the whole country; we will ship everywhere”.

Dachris is more a curator than a food purveyor. “Some products have pretty packaging, and when I tried them, I had to say no because that product inside those beautiful boxes was not equal in excellence”.

He says his market in Australia is not only Greek Australians but a culturally diverse and discerning one; up to a third of his online market is non-Greeks. Ultimately, Dachris sees as a resurgence or, rather, a birth of Greek cuisine beyond the souvlaki.

William Dachris is central to a cultural and culinary revolution in Greece as part of a broader movement that seeks to break free from the stereotypical notions of Greek cuisine. He is not just a purveyor of food; he is an ambassador of culture, an advocate of quality, and a champion of a Greek culinary renaissance.

Get to know the Grecian Purveyor.