First Bites

Greco Boys Grill Brings Great Greek Gyros to South Beach

Greco Boys Grill is a new and shiny Greek gyro/souvlaki place on Alton Road at 17th Street in South Beach -- something the area was sorely in need of. Obligatory blue-hued murals of the Greek islands line the walls above beige wainscot, the floors are set in cobblestoned brick for extra effect, and there's a nice little nook in the back for alfresco dining.

Greco serves gyros and souvlaki for $5.95 to $6.95. Pork or chicken are the meat options for both, although you can also get a vegetarian pita filled with Greek salad and lettuce. The prices are certainly on target.

So are the gyro and souvlaki.

We sampled a chicken souvlaki and pork gyro. The former featured juicy chunks of zestily seasoned meat with tomato, onions, and tzatziki (cucumber/yogurt/garlic sauce) in fresh, warm, puffy pita bread. Pork in the gyro was even tastier; so much spicing is used on the meat that it's difficult to distinguish it from the traditional lamb. Plus it's plumped with the the same garnishes as the souvlaki. Both are great sandwiches.

We also tried a "traditional village salad" (horiatiki), which would have been perfect if the large chunks of tomatoes in the bowl possessed more flavor. Still, it's a solid rendition with cucumber and peppers cut large, small black olives (with pits), and feta crumbles mixed within ($7.95, or $9.95 for a large). If you prefer your feta in slab form, a slice is just $2.50.

There are numerous platter choices in which diners can get one or two souvlaki or gyro with salad and a choice of fries or rice. Prices for these plates range from $9.95 to $15.95. Lunch specials, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., offer fries and soda with any souvlaki ($8.25) or gyro ($8.95). Greco delivers, and yes, there's a delivery special too: any two souvlaki, either in pitas or on skewers, with fries and soda, for $12.95. Same deal for four is $24.45; for six it's $37.25. I can't go any further with this because my abacus isn't readily available.

Greco Boys Grill also proffers appetizers such as the familiar Greek spreads of hummus, tzatziki, tarama, and melitzanosalata ($4.95 each). If you walk up to the counter and can say melitzanosalata three times fast, you'll probably get served three orders of it.

Other offerings include stuffed grape leaves ($6.25), spanakopita ($6.75), baklava and galatobouriko ($5.95 apiece), soda, iced tea, coffee, espresso, and Greek coffee. The workers here are very friendly.

Greco Boys Grill is open daily from 11:30 a.m. until midnight. If you like gyros, the arrival of this place is really good news.

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Miami New Times' restaurant reviewer for the past decade, and the world's indisputable master of disguise.
Contact: Lee Klein