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Best Gyro?

Fred Mar 22, 2006 02:59 PM

Where is it? I love the meat extra well-done! I live in Manhattan and can't seem to find anything GREAT there, I used to love Romanos in on 35th and B-way, but it seems as though it has changed. Any other recs would be greatly appreciated.


  1. p
    Pitu Mar 22, 2006 03:05 PM

    cinderella on second avenue and 8th street is damn good, and consistent.

    i can tell you the best gyro is definitely NOT chickpea.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Pitu
      forta Apr 1, 2006 09:47 PM

      The best gyro is at Opa! Souvlaki house. Good and only $4.50. just north of 30th ave stop on the Ntrain. Their bakery next door (not open late) is worth making the trip.

      1. re: forta
        joeyz Aug 31, 2008 11:43 AM

        I strongly recommend their tzatziki appetizer with bread. You get so much and it's so delicious.

    2. f
      Fred Mar 22, 2006 03:22 PM

      Sorry for confusion

      4 Replies
      1. re: Fred
        Mike R. Mar 23, 2006 12:28 AM

        Check out MEMO on Kings Highway and East 19th Street...mentioned in prior posts - the mixed chicken and lamb combo takes the prize.

        1. re: Mike R.
          nokitsch Jan 7, 2008 10:44 AM

          Second. It's excellent, way better than the hyped Sahara. Also, in Manhattan, go to Zeytuna on John/William - their gyros are the absolute best. It's chicken Mon, Wed, Fri, and lamb Tue.Thu.

          1. re: nokitsch
            DontTryItX Mar 10, 2008 11:20 AM

            I live in Staten Island, All the time go to Sahara King on Coney Island. I really can't say if anything is better the lamb gyros...

            1. re: nokitsch
              ChowDiva Nov 11, 2008 01:03 PM

              I had Zaytuna's lamb gyro today. It was ok. The tzatziki or whiteish sauce was very runny and skimpy but the meat was nice. I wouldn't say it was the absolute best though, in my opinion. I will have to go back and try the chicken. I'm partial to Greek gyros, opposed to Middle Eastern or Turkish style doner kebab, which is what I had at Zaytuna. I like Helios' gyro in Park Slope and Nick's the best so far.

        2. w
          welle Mar 22, 2006 04:42 PM

          my personal favorite is Mangal's (Turkish hole-in-the-wall). Other stuff is good too, but doner is the best. Run out of lamb pretty quickly. 47ish and Queens blvd (#7 to 46th st. station front train).

          2 Replies
          1. re: welle
            Woodside Al Oct 30, 2006 06:09 AM

            Absolutely. Fine chicken doner too. Get it on the homemade Turkish bread rather than a pita -- well worth the buck or 2 extra.

            1. re: welle
              2slices Sep 8, 2008 09:50 AM

              Second! This is the best gyro in the city. Get it on the Home bread. I always thought Turkish places called it Doner, but they call it gyro here. Either way, if you want lamb shaved off a spit with yoghurt etc, this is as good as I've EVER had.

              PS - they now have sit down now table service right next door.

            2. s
              stuartlafonda Mar 22, 2006 06:47 PM

              1. lamb gyro- Fontana , Northern Blvd and Francis Lewis Blvd.
              2. pork gyro- Gyro World- 194-23 Northern Blvd.(just west of francis Lewis blvd)

              2 Replies
              1. re: stuartlafonda
                PAL Mar 22, 2006 07:17 PM

                Fontana's, for sure. I also really like Sparta Souvlaki in Bay Ridge.


                1. re: stuartlafonda
                  GreekGddss Mar 7, 2008 01:43 PM

                  Gyro World is good.
                  Avli in Bayside (Bell Blvd.)
                  Kati Allo in Flushing (Francis Lewis Blvd.)

                2. j
                  jon27 Oct 29, 2006 10:18 PM

                  I moved into Queens 1 year ago and took everyones advice for gyros. However, i was disappointed with most recommendations. These are my findings:
                  Annas Corner: very small portions for the price. As for the gyros i found that is was not good at all. Maybe it was the day I went

                  BZ Grill: Very oily

                  OPA OPA: Looks like their is not much cleaning going on. Might need a renovation. The food was plain O.K.

                  Fontanas: In that area that is probably the best one (Flushing)

                  Aliada: Only seftalies

                  Romanos on 33rd street and Broadway Astoria: Blows every place away. My co workers told me about the place and I tried it. The Gyros is awesome and very big portions for the price
                  The chicken and Gyro combonation platterr with roasted potatoes is exceptional. I also tried their pizza and it was one of the best I've had in a long time. Place is clean and very very friendly.

                  MY VOTE GOES TO ROMANO'S

                  8 Replies
                  1. re: jon27
                    foodzot Nov 12, 2006 03:44 AM

                    Okay, Seriously.. If you like spam then I think Romano's is the place for you. If you like frozen soggy pizza then I think Romano's is the place for you.
                    We ate there eary Saturday evening and the place was empty, the service was great but their fries were under done, their roast potatoes were more like boiled and drenched in oil, their Greek salad contained not one but two olives and two chunks of feta.

                    Their gyro meat looked like spam and I am not kidding. I don't know what happened between your visit and mine less than two weeks apart.

                    Their souvlaki was passable but we couldn't figure out if we were eating lamb or pork.

                    Next time I am going to Nicks on 9th avenue.

                    1. re: foodzot
                      pcorntail Nov 14, 2006 02:22 PM

                      I DO NOT AGREE
                      Are you sure you have the right place???

                      Gyro at Romanos is one of the best you will get. When i moved to Astoria I had tried all of them Gyro places. Gyro at Romanos is not that typical KRONOS Gyro you get at most places. You refer to it as SPAM. I would sure like to try the canned spam you're eating (that tastes that good) because I would be bagging my lunch everyday.
                      Their Pizza IS NOT FROZEN because when you order it they make it right there in front of you. I've also actually witnessed them rolling out their dough.
                      I've lived in the area for years and Romanos has been one of my favorite. As for saturday evenings being empty??? I can honestly say that everytime I've been there on a weekened it is always very busy.
                      As for their Roast Potatoes they are delicious and their souvlaki is also very good.
                      Must be doing something right because I hear they have been there for over 20 years

                      I guess we don't agree

                      1. re: foodzot
                        ryan Jan 6, 2008 04:52 PM


                        I ignored your advice and regret it. Romano's is totally awful! The gyro was indeed some processed meat-product and the joint is just a dive.

                        I should have listened to you, and I should have heeded the little voice that asked, when I sat down, "Do you really think a place with the word pizza in the name, run by latin americans, is gonna make decent greek food?"

                        Next time I get the gyro urge I'll go back to BZ, which is awesome.

                        1. re: ryan
                          zemilideias Sep 11, 2008 07:36 AM

                          Yeah, BZ is really quality food. Someone up above says it's "oily" but then again what gyro is not a bit oily?? It's also dry and tender and the tension between the 3 makes a gyro, no?? I live in Astoria and find BZ to be one of the neighborhood's best restaurants.

                        2. re: foodzot
                          ryan Jan 6, 2008 04:53 PM


                          I ignored your advice and regret it. Romano's is totally awful! The gyro was indeed some processed meat-product and the joint is just a dive.

                          I should have listened to you, and I should have heeded the little voice that asked, when I sat down, "Do you really think a place with the word pizza in the name, run by latin americans, is gonna make decent greek food?"

                          Next time I get the gyro urge I'll go back to BZ, which is awesome.

                          1. re: ryan
                            pcorntail Nov 11, 2008 01:57 PM

                            You know what is really funny???
                            The people that own it are Greek and thay are the ones running it with a couple of latin americans,russian,italianstaff etc.
                            wake up you are in NY most places have people from all over working for them
                            One other thing "awful" is not a word to describe a landmark like Romanos
                            but whatever

                            And as for BZ GRILL I DON'T LIKE IT
                            WE ALL HAVE OPINIONS

                        3. re: jon27
                          Remag1234 Sep 11, 2008 08:24 AM

                          What do you think a Gyro is made of?, it's ground meat or as I called it Mystery Meat. It contains Beef, Pork & Lamb with lots of garlic, oregano and salt.
                          I have no idea of what proportion of each meat goes into a gyro, but it's not 100% lamb. No one would pay upwards of $15 for a gyro sandwich. Take away the pita and other condiments and you have a Salty piece of overly spiced CHOPPED MEAT. So those of you who call it SPAM are technically RIGHT. Only the spicing makes is different from Spam.

                          1. re: Remag1234
                            Astoria Lurker Sep 11, 2008 08:36 AM

                            You're thinking of the garbage that gets called a "gyro" in "greek" diners across the US, and at many places in NYC. What this thread is about is the true Gyro which differs based on the nationality that prepares it. Greek gyros are usually pork (sometimes chicken), roasted on a vertical rotisserie, and this is the specialty at BZ Grill. Turkish gyro or doner is lamb (or beef sometimes) as is schwarma, the Middle Eastern gyro.

                            None of these should be made with ground mystery meat, and if it is, you know it's a poor representation. What you should look for is stacks of sliced pork/beef/lamb/chicken roasting vertically. You sir, need to try a real gyro asap.

                        4. l
                          LHT Oct 30, 2006 03:12 PM

                          Gyro Uno on Steinway and B'way and Pizza Palace on Ditmars & 31st. If you like the meat extra well-done & crispy all you need to do is ask.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: LHT
                            helen19 Feb 14, 2008 09:08 AM

                            gyro uno = <3
                            i dont order gyro a lot, but when i do only from them
                            Gyro world, northern and 190th? right by st. nicks grk church
                            pita pan was very disappointing when i tried it

                            1. re: LHT
                              montoya040 Oct 20, 2008 08:02 PM

                              I think it should be illegal to recommend Pizza Palace to anyone.

                            2. k
                              KRS Oct 31, 2006 10:03 PM

                              Spartan Souvlaki, 6820 Eighth Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-748-5838

                              Sietsema was dead center on this one. http://www.villagevoice.com/nyclife/0...

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: KRS
                                gangly handful Jan 16, 2008 05:39 AM

                                Definitely the winner. Especially fun for fumigating the subway car on the ride home with the after-effects of the extremely garlicky and delicious tzatziki. Great fries too.

                              2. danoots Nov 10, 2006 05:35 PM

                                Is anyone aware of places that put french fries in their Gyros (we found this to be very common in Crete)? It's much, much better than it sounds.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: danoots
                                  JenMarie66 Nov 10, 2006 07:16 PM

                                  Ummm, I remember getting great gyros w/ fries inside in Crete. They were so good. Ate some french fry omlets, too. I wish I knew of a place here, but don't. (I've also been looking for a Peruvian place that makes my favorite: saltado de mariscos which is seafood with onions, tomatoes, and french fries all mixed together. I am a big fan of fry-integrated dishes.

                                  1. re: danoots
                                    Gastronomos Nov 14, 2006 05:06 PM

                                    Pita Pan puts fries in their gyros and souvlaki pita sandwiches. Also, if the fries are right out of the fry-o-lator, they're great!

                                    1. re: Gastronomos
                                      danoots Nov 15, 2006 04:18 PM

                                      thanks for the tip!

                                      1. re: danoots
                                        Astoria Lurker Nov 15, 2006 06:23 PM

                                        Pita Pan is not very good, greasy fast-foody, Kronos gyro. Comparing Pita Pan to a place like BZ Grill is like comparing McDonalds to In-N-Out in my opinion.

                                        The mixed-grill at BZ Grill comes with pork and chicken gyro, fries, various sausages, pita and sauce, so it's easy to assemble a great gyro. I haven't been to Romano's but it's on the list.

                                  2. k
                                    KRS Nov 11, 2006 12:06 PM

                                    On Sietsema's recommendation, we went to Spartan Souvlaki and loved the gyro. It's an order of magnitude better than the standard grease bomb. http://www.villagevoice.com/nyclife/0...

                                    1. f
                                      foodzot Nov 15, 2006 10:09 PM

                                      The Romano's we ate at was on the corner of 33rd Street and Broadway and yes sir it was empty.

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: foodzot
                                        joekarten Jan 6, 2008 07:45 PM

                                        gyro corner on francis lewis blvd.

                                        1. re: joekarten
                                          neddludd Jan 7, 2008 09:46 AM

                                          As usual, the Bronx seems invisible in this discussion.

                                          There's a relatively new place that opened just up the road from the Riverdale Diner and up from the 50th Precinct that makes a good gyro.

                                        2. re: foodzot
                                          Remag1234 Sep 12, 2008 09:45 AM

                                          A better place than Gyro Corner or Fontana's [last time at Fontana's, it was a pig sty. Never again. Back to a better place, Try Nikita's Place on Utopia Pkwy and 19th Ave. Whitestone. Good food at good prices.

                                        3. byrd Jan 16, 2008 04:41 AM

                                          Serious Romanos downgrade: It seems that they are using the cheapest ingredients, from the gyro meat to the feta and olives. The hot sauce was so watered down, it barely had a reddish tinge to it. Have been twice in the last ten days.

                                          1. d
                                            d18black Jan 16, 2008 05:00 AM

                                            Gyro Corner on Francis Lewis gets my vote

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: d18black
                                              debster Mar 7, 2008 12:15 PM

                                              Avli on Bell Blvd in Bayside is a new Greek taverna with great gyro, souvlaki, falafel, lemon potatoes, dips and even lamp and pork chops. Service is great and thankfully they deliver. The two places mentioned on Francis Lewis Blvd to me look greasy and dirty and totally unappetizing. The gyro at Avli is moist and looks more like meat than rotating shoe leather.

                                              1. re: debster
                                                GreekGddss Mar 7, 2008 01:46 PM

                                                Avli ROCKS. It's good food and clean restaurant. Very friendly service too. Gyro Corner and Fontana's--I NEVER go there. I only get Pizza from Fontana's b/c they make Greek-style pizza almost like the wonderful stuff I used to get in Greece. Not quite, but still good pizza. But their souvlaki and gyros are blech.

                                                Kati Allo is also good.

                                                1. re: GreekGddss
                                                  chefjellynow Mar 10, 2008 05:09 PM

                                                  fontana's forever :)

                                                  1. re: chefjellynow
                                                    dnm3k Sep 9, 2008 09:20 AM

                                                    Alvi all day and all night. However as if there Gyro wasn't head and shoulders tastier and better than the others in Bayside, their Chicken and Pork Donner's are just as great, if not better.

                                                  2. re: GreekGddss
                                                    apostoli007 Sep 29, 2008 02:35 PM

                                                    Truly we really don't have a good place in queens at all they all suck

                                                    1. re: apostoli007
                                                      2slices Oct 10, 2008 10:29 AM

                                                      untrue - mangal kebab. Qns blvd at 44thih. My favorite in the entire city. Get it on the homemade bread. It's amazing.

                                              2. j
                                                joeyz Aug 31, 2008 11:47 AM

                                                I have always enjoyed the gyro and souvlaki at ditmars gyro, an authentic family institution. For an extra, American style touch, get a side of cheese fries and some tzatziki for dipping sauce. Yum!

                                                1. m
                                                  montoya040 Oct 20, 2008 08:13 PM

                                                  Anyone remember a place in astoria called Lemonia ? It closed down a couple yeas ago but it was amazing.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: montoya040
                                                    Rocky45 Nov 11, 2008 01:09 AM

                                                    ooooh yes, the late great Lemonia on the corner of 30th St and Broadway in Astoria. Once a week, I'd get the souvlaki and gyro combo sandwich with a side order of fries, to go. Unfortunately, the gyro was the pressed meat version, but I didn't care, the enormous sandwich of souvlaki chunks and crispy gyro pieces with everything on it was the best belly bomber around. It closed a few years ago. Aliades is currently in business in the same location.. Requiscat in Pace Lemonia.

                                                  2. Sluggo1407 Feb 4, 2011 10:18 AM

                                                    I used to work in the Metrotech Center, downtown Brooklyn. At least twice a week I would go to a hole in the wall called the Souvlaki House for a gyro. It was outstanding. It's worth the trip on the R train to Lawrence Street station.
                                                    158 Lawrence Street, Brooklyn - (718) 852-0443

                                                    Souvlaki House
                                                    158 Lawrence St, Brooklyn, NY 11201

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