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Gyro to go

Mediterranean Grill a perfect pita pit stop


Walk down most streets in Europe, and you'll find Greek-owned shops hocking gyros, kabobs and fries. Atlanta's streets are beginning to fill up with many of the same enticements. Not all of them have the telltale fat-dripping spits of lamb in their windows, but you will find mouth-watering meats and plenty of tahini. Like many of its European counterparts, Mediterranean Grill is short on ambiance but long on the traditional menu items Greek food lovers crave. Located in a strip mall in Decatur minutes from Emory and the Square, the restaurant offers eat-in or take-out options, so you can pick up an order of falafel to go or devour your feta and olives on-site.

What we ate:At $3.95, the standard gyro sandwich is a bargain -- pita stuffed with a well-seasoned blend of beef and lamb, and plenty of lettuce, tomatoes and tsatsiki sauce. The same goes for the chicken kabob sandwich ($4.25), with marinated, charbroiled chicken breast replacing the gamier lamb. You won't find french fries, but the Greek potatoes ($1.95) are a better accompaniment anyway; the cubed pieces, more like home fries tossed with spices, are certainly a satisfying heap of starch. The business lunch combo for ($5.95; 11 a.m.-3 p.m.) is another steal, featuring a generous portion of shish kabob (sliced sirloin), kufta kabob (ground sirloin), and gyro slices served with rice pilaf, salad and pita. It even includes a soft drink.

Service: Order at the counter and take a seat. You'll get a call when your meal is ready. The owner is nice enough to explain menu options, and feel free to watch as your meal is prepared on the grill.

Cheapest item: You can make a meal out of many of the appetizers. Hummus, baba ghanoush and tabouli come in small ($2.95) or large sizes ($4.25). Double-dip your pita in any of the Mediterranean classics: chickpeas, eggplant or bulgar. You'll fill up in no time.

Most expensive item: Main entrees don't get any more pricey than $7.95. Choose between the shish kabob, kufta kabob, vegetarian or combination plates. They all include sides of rice, salad and pita. The vegetarian is a combo of hummus, baba ghanoush and fried falafel with tabouli.

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