If you are looking for a meal that is a somewhat cheaper than Chez Panisse, try Souvlaki Greek Traditional Foods at 2518 Durant (between Telegraph and Bowdich) near Sproul Plaza. They have the best Greek roasted chicken anywhere. The chicken is encrusted with Mediterranean herbs and then flame roasted until the skin of the chicken and the herbs are almost black. It is the best Greek roasted chicken anywhere. I get the 1/4 chicken plate, which is enough for me. They use large chickens. It comes with lemon sauce, salad, and french fries. The meal is very underpriced at just $4.00. I don’t know how they stay in business. The 1/2 chicken plate is $6.99. The lamb gyro plate is also very good. If you want dessert or a lighter meal, try the Greek yogurt, which comes with fresh strawberries, raspberries, and honey. My only complaint with this restaurant is the uncomfortable, flimsy seating. Souvlaki Greek doesn’t have a web site, but you can see their menu on their Facebook page at Souvlaki Greek.
GREEK RESTAURANTS IN BALTIMORE.
I ate a lot of Greek food when I was a kid growing up in Baltimore. My grandparents came to America from Odessa over 100 years ago. Odessa is on the Black Sea, and there is a strong Greek influence in the food and culture of the city. Tarses is a common name in northern Greece. My father used to take me and my sister Judy to Greek restaurants all the time. There were a lot of small, family-run Greek restaurants in downtown Baltimore in those days. Unfortunately, the sanitary conditions at these restaurants was often substandard. My father and I were willing to overlook that if the food was good, but my sister was not. She complained constantly about the unsanitary conditions at these greasy-spoon restaurants. Judy would say things like: ‘This table is sticky and smells bad’, ‘There are rat traps in the bathroom’, and ‘I don’t want to eat at restaurants where you have to shoo away the flies while you’re eating.’ Eventually, my father wound up leaving Judy at home when he and I went to restaurants that we both knew she would complain about. My sister still won’t eat at restaurants with rat traps in them, and now, neither will I.