Note: The following are my thoughts as of the date of this entry, and things may or may not be the same years down the road.
I’ll start by saying that as a foodie, and coming from a place where I admit to having definitely been spoiled by some great places to eat, the selection in Baltimore overall is far from meeting my expectations. For the moment I’m here for school—possibly longer if I end up getting a job here—but I would honestly prefer it if I could move back to where I’m from, closer to the DC area if I could, just to be around a more abundant selection of good food.
That said, there are still good places to eat in Baltimore—it just takes more of an effort to find them. At least, that’s been my experience. Luckily, Souvlaki Authentic Greek Cuisine is close to my current place of work and was just a Yelp click away when I first discovered them last month. I’m a pretty picky eater, but I’d like to think that I counterbalance this by being a “daring foodie,” so I’ll try just about any establishment once if it sounds like a place where I might like to eat.
I’m scheduling this entry ahead of time, so the actual date I’m writing this is July 2, 2015, which was the date of my second time ever ordering here. Both times I ordered the lamb platter—the first time was with their Greek fries and the second time with regular. My recommendation? Definitely get the Greek fries. I thought they were amazing. I think it’s an additional 50 cents, but the difference is clear. I think the feta or whatever oils they use gets soaked in the fries too, making them taste even more delicious. Unfortunately, both times I ordered, I was so incredibly hungry that I didn’t think to stop and take a picture of either meal, so the photos I used on this entry are images from their website or Yelp page. (LOL. Sorry, sorry!)
I think most of the Yelp reviews are accurate in saying that the place is small; so if you’ve got a huge group, dining in might prove difficult, depending on how busy it gets. I haven’t really had an experience on dining in, so I can’t really provide any insight as to when the “peak” times might be. Personally, I’m not a fan of eating in a small area in general, so I think my transactions with this place will primarily be either carryout or delivery (pretty much the same way I do any other place that serves food that has a smaller area for dining). I stress that this is a personal preference and not a reflection of how I feel towards this specific restaurant.
Some people have complained about the prices, but I actually think that with the fries, they give a sizable amount of food for what you’re paying for; I definitely get full and can never seem to finish the whole thing. The prices are honestly comparable to the Moby Dick location I frequent back home (which serves this type of food), so as far as that goes, it wasn’t much of a shock to me.
As I mentioned, both times I ordered the lamb platter. I think their online menu descriptions do a better job of setting expectations than their paper menu does, in terms of explaining exactly what you’re going to get. (E.g. I was told I would be getting 2 lamb skewers, tzatziki sauce, and an order of fries—in an amount that is maybe just a little under a standard portion from Five Guys, and that’s exactly what I received.) Both times the lamb was soft, which I loved. I also like what they sprinkled on the pita bread. Better than the plain stuff they give you most other Greek-themed places I’ve tried, for sure. Also, I really like their yogurt sauce; it’s thicker and not watered down like Moby’s is (which happens to be my hugest gripe with that chain, because I end up finishing the sauce way too quickly and have so much pita left over). They give you enough of it here, at least for me, anyway. I had enough for all the pieces of lamb, pita, and a few fries. I was pretty happy about that.
The customer service is also fantastic, and that was one of the main reasons why I wanted to write up this entry. When ordering for delivery today, I asked if I could be given a few packets of ketchup. I did jokingly mention my (very real) love for ketchup, but I was still only expecting maybe one or two packets and was planning to just dip my fries really lightly in order to make them last. What I did not expect was a small container filled almost to the top with a generous portion of ketchup. I realize this isn’t exactly something most people would jump around and celebrate about, but for someone like me who really likes ketchup, this made my day. So yes, I back up all the Yelp reviews that say these people provide great customer service. They’re friendly both in person and over the phone, and clearly they listen.
While they offer salad and fries as side options, I do wish that they had an option of rice as a side as well. Then again, it’s possible that they do have it—I haven’t asked—but it’s not on the menu, so I’m assuming they don’t. I’m the type of person that likes to eat meat items with rice, so if they were to add it to the menu, then that’s definitely what I’d be going for as a side in the future.
If you’re thinking of carrying out or placing an order for delivery, you might also want to consider asking for plastic utensils. Both times I’ve ordered I’ve forgotten to ask, and I’ve found that taking the lambs off the skewers can get a bit messy. They provide napkins though, which is good.
I think that this is a good place as a lunch option, and it’s definitely going to be one of my regular go-to spots so long as I’m working in the Hampden area. For more information on things like hours, parking, menu, etc., I’ll place the links to their website and Yelp page again below.
Official Website: http://yoursouvlaki.com/