Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill: Greek Cafes in Twentieth-Century Australia

The print run of the first book about Greek cafes in Australia (Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill) is all but sold out. If you want one, the last box is open.

For more information, see transcript and video from The 7.30 Report (ABC), which is available at the link below.




Filed under Greek Cafes

59 responses to “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill: Greek Cafes in Twentieth-Century Australia

  1. Liz Kaydos

    Hi I would like to purchase a copy of ‘Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill’ as I grew in a greek cafe in NSW country town and would love to read your book. If you could let me know where I could get a copy that would be great.

  2. Danny Deligiannis

    Would you please advise if your book on country Greek cafes is still in publication and how possibly I can purchase a copy.

    • tonirisson

      Hi Danny, “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill” is actually being reprinted at the moment, and will, with any luck, be available for Christmas. You can look in again in a few weeks time or I can email you when the repint is done. Thanks for your enquiry.

  3. Jan Russell

    Can you tell me if the reprint of Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill is still available.

    • tonirisson

      Dear Jan,
      Thanks for asking about “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill.” The book proved to be very popular because many people felt that it represented their family’s story. It has been out of print for some time, but is being reprinted in China at the moment. I can’t believe how long this is taking, but I expect it any time now. I will add your email address to the list of those to be contacted as soon as it arrives.

  4. Peter poulos

    please let me know where i can buy a copy of Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill
    thanks in advance

    • tonirisson

      Hi Peter,
      Thanks for asking about “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill.” As you will see from previous comments, the book is being reprinted in China at the moment. I will add your email address to the list of those to be contacted as soon as it arrives, which will hopefully be very soon now.

  5. John Ramsay

    Hi Toni

    Just saw you interviewed on Landline with regard the re-launch of the Roxy Cafe and Cinema in Bingara.
    I grew up in Inverell in the 60’s and 70’s and Greek cafe culture was very much a part of my formative years. I knew all the local cafes togrther with those in surrounding towns. I was married to a Greek- Australian woman whose father owned and ran Greek (American) Cafes in northern NSW and Sydney.
    My sisters and parents were also great patrons from the 1930’s.
    Are copies of your book still available.
    Best regards

    • tonirisson

      Hi John,
      We had a fantastic time at Bingara. The Landline team was with us all weekend and did very well to edit the experience down to 20 minutes. As you will have heard, the Roxy cafe’s fittings came from an Inverell cafe – the Regent Cafe, which was owned by the Fardoulys family. Perhaps you remember it. Or the Black and Green Cafe? Now, that could be Green and Black. You may be interested in a second book I am writing about Greek cafes. There is room to include your ex-father-in-law’s story if you have access to some information and a couple of photographs. “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill” is being reprinted in China at the moment, and I will add your email address to the list of those to be contacted as soon as it arrives, which will hopefully be very soon now.

  6. Kathy T

    I am really interested in purchasing this book.
    Any ideas how I can get a copy?

    Kathy T

  7. Bruce Stainton

    I have just watched the latest edition of ‘Landline’ and was entranced by the story on Greek cafes. I am approaching 70 and remember well the Greek cafes (especially the Mixed Grills)in country towns in which I lived for some time.

    Is it possible to obtain a copy of your book Aphrodite and the Mixed grill.



    • tonirisson

      Hi Bruce,
      As you will see from my other posts this morning, the book is on its way. Talk about a slow boat from China! I will let you know as soon as she gets here. They tell me I am being fussy about the colour, but there you are . . .

  8. John Loulias

    Hi Toni,
    Just visited Bingara recently to have a look at the refurbished Roxy Theatre and Cafe. We used to own the cafe between 1959 and 1962. Your book Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill appears hard to get and I would dearly love a copy. I know it is in reprint at the moment so I was wondering if it is now available.

    • tonirisson

      Dear John,
      Sorry this reprint is taking so long, but you are now on my list to be contacted as soon as she gets here. Did you enjoy visiting the cafe and theatre in Bingara? They really have something special there, and it is only a short drive to the Calikerinos’ cafe in Manilla, where Paul has been working for decades. His Beef Stifado is brilliant. You may be interested in contributing to my next book about Greek cafes. If you have a bit of history and a couple of old photos and a story or two, I would love to document your experience. Email me (t.risson@uq.edu) and we can work on it if you like.

  9. I would like to know if Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill is still available and if so how I can purchase a copy. If available what would be the cost.

    • tonirisson

      Dear Carol,
      The reprint of Aphrodite will soon be available at the same price as the original, which was $49.50 plus postage and handling. I will send you an email when it arrives. Postage (for the first edition) was about $10, and that package could take one or two books for the same price. I am very happy to inscribe it for you.

  10. tonirisson

    Dear Ben,
    Thanks for asking about “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill.” As you will see, the book is being reprinted and I will contact you as soon as it arrives, which will hopefully be very soon now. I enjoyed reading your memories of flying in for mixed grills as a commercial pilot.

  11. Tess Collins

    Just watched the Greek Cafe segment of Landline program on I-View. Please put me on your email list as I would like a copy of your book when the slow boat from China gets here.

  12. Manuel M

    Growing up with these cafes in the Illawarra area are so part of the making of Australia and its culture . A credit it to you Toni for bringing this important part of our history documented and into Light . I must get a copy of this book when available . The Wollongong Greek Cafes would be a great addition to you next Book

    • tonirisson

      Wollongong . . . now I seem to remember reading about a cafe that operated there for about three generations. Does Karanges sound familiar? What were some of the family/cafe names you can recall, Manuel?

      • Manuel M

        I will have a talk to my folks Toni who knew alot of these owners personally !! One cafe which stands out in Wollongong was called “The California ” it had the traditional booths and long serving counter arrangement .i use to remember going there as a kid !! this one , was one of many around !!!

  13. Julie Beck

    We would love a copy of your book when re published Toni…we know of the Mottee cafe in Kempsey through a friend.
    If you could let us know when it is released we would be very grateful. Like evryone else obviously, we saw the story on ‘Landline.’

    • tonirisson

      They simply served up sandwiches and coffee (and often not real coffee), dispensed milkshakes and ice-cream sodas, slapped steaks on large oval plates, and dropped mixed lollies into white, paper bags, but these shops presided at the heart of our communities and were a significant part of the way we once lived. Many were quite small, even dowdy, but we loved them, and when you consider that one might have found up to a dozen Greek cafes in cities and regional centres and were likely to pass one in the tiniest of hamlets, it would not be overestimating the situation to say that there must have been thousands of Greek cafes in Australia. They touched us all.

      • Julie Beck

        Would you please notify us when the reprint of your book arrives Toni…we DO want a copy – have had no luck finding it and after reading the posts we know why!


    Good Morning Toni
    I would like to purchase a copy of “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grll”. Please add my email to the list of salivating readers!
    During the late 80’s I was teaching near Goondiwindi. Nurses and teachers are such an effective form of government rural subsidy!
    We used to meet, eat and greet outside the Greek cafe in Goondi’s main street. Well I didn’t stay and I’m not sure if the cafe is still there.

    • tonirisson

      Dear Catherine,
      You are on the list. Do you happen to remember the name of the cafe in Goondi? I think there is one there now called the Gunsynd that has an old sign over the door: The Border Milk bar (I think). And I believe the Pippos family had a cafe there too.

  15. Toni

    I have searched far and wide for the book without success. Please add me to your list and let me know when its available.

  16. Nicki Pappas

    Hi Toni,
    Please add me to your list. Very keen to get a copy.

  17. Debbie

    Hi Toni,
    I have become a member of a site on facebook “I live/lived in Ipswich Qld, and love my lil town!. I mentioned your book on this site because it is a marvellous history of the cafe scene. There have been a number of people who he expressed interest in this book and as I can see from your comments there was a reprint. If possible could you please advise me how a copy could be obtained and either check if you can update your details on there or pass info on to me so that I can pass on info. I still have my copy and love it.

    • tonirisson

      So glad to hear that you love your book, Debbie. I will certainly keep in touch with you regarding the reprint.

  18. Don McLean

    Hi Toni, could you please add me to your list. Would love to buy a copy once it is available again, Regards Don

  19. Peter

    Hi Toni, Please add me to the list for the book.

  20. dean

    Hi Toni,
    Has the book been republished yet. I’d like a copy. Please let me know. Thanks

    • tonirisson

      Hi Dean,
      Not ready yet (and if the creases aren’t ironed out soon I will be doing the job myself in Australia). So sorry for the long delay.

  21. Jillian

    Hi Toni,
    Should have bought the book when it first came out!!! So sorry to bother you but …you know the question…Any copies of Aphrodite available yet? Loved the story on The Roxy, (by the way). Also please tell us that you intend to publish your Thesis on Lollies…my husband & I are salivating in anticipation. Thanks so much for your time & apologies again for asking annoying questions
    Jil Heit

    • tonirisson

      Dear Jillian,
      No need for apologies – I can’t believe how long this is taking (downright embarrassing). No end of excuses from the other end, but we hope it will be in Australia in time for Christmas. The lolly research is going to be a very beautiful book because of all the lovely lolly pictures. I will keep you posted about that one too.

  22. Theodora Christophides

    Please, please put me on a reminder list when the book Aphrodite becomes available. I want one, I need one, I have to have one.

    Also keep a reminder for the lolly book
    Thank You for the history

    • tonirisson

      Thank you for that message Theodora: I want one, I need one, I have to have one – you made me laugh. The book should be in my hands soon.

  23. kate mackay

    Hi Toni,
    Please add me to your list for a copy of the book! My parents took over the local greek cafe in coffs harbour from our greek cousins in the 1970’s, and my father would love a copy of the book.

    • tonirisson

      Hi Kate, I will add your name. I expect to have the book in the next couple of weeks. Is the cafe in Coffs still there? I am headed down that way in January.

      • kate mackay

        Hi Toni, thanks for that! Unfortunately our cafe no longer exists in it’s Greek form – when my parents sold it about 17 (?) years ago it was modernised into a regular cafe. It was always called Peter’s Cafe after Peter Melittas who started it – I think it’s now called Foreshore – it is towards the end of the Jetty strip of shops (it was actually the last shop when we were there). We gave some of the memorabilia – old menus etc – to the local museum when we left, regards, Kate

      • tonirisson

        Thanks Jenny. I will check it out anyway, and see if I can find the museum. What a great idea to lodge memorabilia there.


      • kate mackay

        Dear Toni,
        Thank you very much – my father rang me today to say that the book had arrived – great service! I am also going to Coffs in January to visit my parents, so I am looking forward to checking out your book. (I have checked and unfortunately the local museum is in the middle of moving at the moment and so is not open!)

  24. Catie Davis

    Hi Toni

    I am wanting to purchase “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill” for a christmas present. I am originally from Goondiwindi and remember the wonderful cafes there also. In fact one of the Pippos’ grandaughters is a teacher here in Ipswich.


    • tonirisson

      Gidday Catie, the book is going arrive in the next few days. If you are in Ipswich I am sure we can do a handover in time for Christmas (and avoid postage costs). I drove out to Brewarrina earlier this year to interview Mr Pippos in the Cafe de Luxe, which has been there many decades and is still going. If I remember correctly, his dad started cafes in Goondi and two other towns as well. I’d love to talk to the grandaughter if she has any memories of those shops. Thanks for your email. Will be in touch. Toni

  25. Kathy

    Thanks for the book. I love it

  26. Thea

    Would love to purchase a copy of “Aphrodite and the Mixed Grill” please.
    Enjoyed very much the Landline chat about it, last eve on ABC.
    My husband remembers the “Monte Carlo” cafe, owned by the Papadimitriou family in Hannan Street, Kalgoorlie, opposite the picture theatre about 1957 or before.
    Regards, Thea .

  27. john

    hi, were can I purchase a copy of your book, do you sell them online, thanks

    • toni risson

      Hi there John,
      The book is $49.50 and postage is about $12. But I’ll send you an email to sort out payment.

  28. Adam Rogers

    Hi Toni,
    Any Chance you may create an electronic version of this book, put it on google books and/or itunes?

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