Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Messini Authentic Gyros

Okay, I have not tried every restaurant on the Danforth, but I gotta say, so far Messini Authentic Gyros is my favourite place to go for Greek food, especially for gyros. 

For those of you who are unfamiliar with gyros, here's some background information about it straight from Messini's website:

"Gyros are a Greek pita sandwich generally made with chicken or pork. The pita is usually stuffed with meat, tomatoes, onions and tzatiki sauce. In Greece, gyros are usually made as a fast food, as hamburgers are in the Western world."

When you walk into Messini, you will see a variety of meats, rotating on a spit. Seeing this makes my mouth water.

A lot of people get their gyros to-go, that's why there is always a crowd waiting by the door. Messini closes at 1am on weeknights, and at 5am on Fridays and Saturdays - perfect for the after-club crowd.

Messini's full menu also found online.

On-the-house pita.

This is the Greek Salad that comes with the pita combo; it has tomatoes, feta cheese, green peppers, onions, cucumber, olive oil, oregano and kalamata olives. Every time I'm there, not only am I amazed at how fresh their veggies are (cucumbers and onions are always fresh and crunchy, but also the amount of feta cheese they put in it.

These Greek Fries is another side that comes with the pita combo ($1 extra for feta cheese). I love these fries with the cheese and oregano.

Deep Fried Calamari ($8.45) - Although the presentation isn't that great, the calamari was really really good as they were big and meaty and fried with a very thin batter; a lot of restaurants' calamari are small rings but are drenched in batter to look bigger - not at Messini!

I always order Spankaopita ($3.95), which is a flaky spinach pie. I love the moist spinach (a lot of it too) wrapped around the thin layers of pastry.

Gyro Pita Combo ($13.95) - This is the combo my friend and I ordered, which comes with two gyro pitas (pork gyro pita on the left, chicken gyro pita on the right) and the Greek salad and Greek fries that came earlier.

These gyro pitas are huge and the meat is just fabulous. Every time I have it I'm speechless at how good it is. No matter what type of gyro meat you order (choice of lamb, chicken, pork, or mixed) it is bound to be juicy (or at least the times I had it, I've heard the contrary from others). This time I had the chicken gyro pita (I usually have pork as it has more fat) and was pleasantly surprised that the chicken wan't dry at all either. 

And what is great about gyro meat is the brown & crunchy part, which you can see on the picture - this is where the meat is exposed to the heat as it rotates on the spit. All this meaty goodness, along with fries and tzatziki sauce, are wrapped inside the pita. YUMMM.

I could not finish my gyro as I was too full from all the appetizers. I knew I didn't have to order the spanikopita nor the calamari but I couldn't help myself. Just so you know, a pork gyros pita by itself is only $4.05. Now you see why people line up outside?

By the way, I know it seems a bit odd that there are French fries in the pita, but according to Messini it is custom to do so in many Greek cities. 

At Messini, I always order gyros so I have no idea whether their other stuff is good or not; I just love their gyros too much so I order it every time I go - and once I order that I won't don't have room for other entrées. I can't resist it, it's just so fresh, you can see them carve away the meat from the spit and place on to the pita right afterwards. 

However, one thing I do notice the last few times I went was that the pita was not as soft as it used to be =( Messini does say that their pitas are made fresh daily, so maybe next time I can just ask them to warm it up first hehe~

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