This one will have to be quick, but I had a badass lunch excursion with The Buddha today, and I feel the need to speak on it for a bit. Ok…part of that need is because one of the spots that we hit JUST opened, and what self-respecting blogger passes up an opportunity like that?
The other driving force behind my desire to talk about it is that it was my very first time visiting the Sweet Auburn Curb Market in Edgewood.
Wow…I freakin’ love this place. Any establishment that houses, all under one roof, African cuisine, gyros, and at least two separate vendors that will sell you a whole pig is going to win me over pretty quickly. The market has a great vibe to it, and if I worked or lived in the area, I would be there constantly.
Our first stop for the afternoon was the Market’s newest restaurant, The Greek Gyros and Pizza. In fact, The Greek is so new that it hasn’t even opened yet. At least, not according to their website or any other news blogs that I’ve read. They aren’t slated to actually open until April 14th.
Leave it to Buddha to somehow stay ahead of the curve and know they’d be open 8 days early. And by “somehow”, I mean that he follows them on Twitter.
So, by now, we all know that I’m a complete slut for the following: Chicken biscuits, Cuban Sandwiches, and anything that is seasoned with, consists of, or has shared cutting board space with some form of pork. But did you know I’m also a total whore for a great gyro?
Well, now you do.
The Greek, which is basically a countertop food court stand in the middle of the Sweet Auburn Market, is no-frills, straight up, Greek fare. With selections such as Hummus, Stuffed grape leaves, pizza, gyros, and kabobs, the menu reads like almost every mom-and-pop Greek joint that you have been to. And I say that in a completely positive way.
I’m a big believer in the philosophy that simple, classic, well-executed food can stand up to the most fancified or “revolutionary” take on any cuisine under the sun. And if you want a solid gyro, The Greek is a great option.
I know it’s not a very flattering picture, but this is the Gyro Wrap. As any good gyro should, this contains rotisserie roasted lamb and beef, tomato, red onion, and tsatiki on pita. We also added some extra feta, which I would recommend. Granted, I had a few mouthfuls that were ALL feta that weren’t my favorite, but it was still good feta cheese and all of the evenly distributed mouthfuls totally made up for it.
Everything in here worked. The meat was juicy and (I believe) freshly shaved, the tomatoes were ripe, the pita was soft, and the tsatiki was creamy. In trying to describe this to Buddha, I had to choke down the phrase “street food”, mostly because that is already my foodie equivalent to the most recent Kings Of Leon album- played out. But that is the only way I could think to put it. If some dude at a cart served me this gyro in New York, I’d wolf it down on the street corner with a shit-eating grin on my face. And I’d probably come home talking about how we need guys like that in Atlanta.
Buddha also had a slice of their cheese pizza (white cheddar, feta, and provolone cheeses) that was pretty damn solid as well. I love the buttered-up pan style crust that you often find in Greek pizza, and this hit the nail on the head with that.
Not to be satisfied with only one lunch, there was another countertop calling my name that I just couldn’t resist. And it is one that I should have been to a long time ago.
Grindhouse Killer Burgers.
Obviously, I’m WAAAAYYYY behind the 8-ball on this one. Not that I haven’t heard all of the hoopla about them, I’ve just never had the chance to make it down to Edgewood during lunch. And the burgers they made at Primal last year were stellar, so I wasn’t going to leave the building without trying them.
Having already eaten an entire lunch, I only had room for a burger, so I didn’t get to sample the fries that I’ve heard so much about.
Though word on the street is that the Apache Burger is out of this world, I went with the classic Grindhouse Burger with an Angus beef patty, lettuce, grilled onions, American cheese, and Grindhouse sauce (AKA secret sauce, AKA Thousand Island dressing, AKA ketchup, mayo, and hot sauce).
Despite the fact that I was full when I ordered it, I found myself complaining about how my burger STILL hadn’t come out yet. And this was after a whopping 7 minutes of waiting. It smelled so good, and I was so turned on about a good burger, that I wanted it NOW.
Again…no-frills awesomeness. This was just a damn good burger. Not much to say that hasn’t already been said, but I inhaled the whole thing. Greasy all-American goodness. Much as The Greek has done with the gyro, Grindhouse hasn’t re-invented the burger, they just did it really well. I was very pleased to learn, firsthand, that all of the ruckus about Grindhouse was justified.
Having actually gone there, I now know that there are many other reasons aside from Grindhouse to make the trek to Sweet Auburn. And I’m pleased to report that you can add The Greek to that list.
If you are heading to the Sweet Auburn Curb Market anytime soon, be sure you remember these things: The Greek IS open already, if it came from a pig then you can buy it here, and there is ALWAYS room for two badass lunches in a single afternoon.
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