Published on December 6th, 2012 | by The Dork1
Review: Grecian Gardens (City Market)
From the first few reviews here on Dork With A Fork it should be obvious that my real job takes me into the heart of downtown Indianapolis each and every day of the week. True to my form, I start thinking about where to take lunch before I even get the office coffee brewed. After working three years in a desolate area on the near north side where our only dining options were Wendy’s, Taco Bell, or Walgreen’s take out, I truly appreciate the variety of fantastic locally owned restaurants within walking distance of Monument Circle.
One of my favorite places for a quick lunch is the Indianapolis City Market. The recent renovations have made the main hall warm and inviting and there is plentiful seating both upstairs and outside. Even on the days when I have no idea what sounds good for lunch all it takes is a quick loop around the vendors to find something incredible.
This past Monday was unseasonably warm and muggy for December and for some reason put me in the mood for gyros, so off to the City Market and Grecian Gardens.
Grecian Gardens is located just inside the front doors in the main hall of City Market. Dont’ take to long reviewing their large menu board as Mama (I have no idea for sure if she is actually ‘The Mama’, but that is the role she take in my mind) quickly asks for your order with a thick Greek accent and a twinkle in her eye. If you have questions about the ingredients Mama has always been helpful to me in explaining the intricacies of Greek food. The order is then passed back to Papa (again, no idea) who adds the side of grilled pita and boxes it up. In my experience the order is rung up and you always have your food in hand in less than five minutes.
I only have one problem when I visit Grecian Gardens in search of seasoned lamb stuffed into a warm pita. The rotating daily specials that are on display in the steamers always look so delicious that I have never actually ordered the gyros. Monday was no different as Mama’s Special was one of my all time favorites, stuffed peppers with roasted potatoes (rice was also a side option).
Taking advantage of the warm weather I grabbed my Grecian Gardens grub and headed outside to eat.
As I said earlier stuffed peppers are one my favorite comfort foods and Mama’s special did not disappoint. The green pepper was tender enough to cut with a plastic fork but not mushy and the taste was perfect. The ground beef and rice filling, while not groundbreaking, was seasoned exactly as expected. My only wish would have been for a little more feta cheese sprinkled on top, but then again, I am a feta cheese addict.
The seasoned roast potatoes were also cooked exactly as I like; firm enough to provide resistance to the plastic fork when cutting and possessing a pleasing texture.
Both the pepper and the potatoes were heavily coated in oil but neither resulted in that all too common after meal heavy oil bloat. In fact the oil absorbed enough flavor from the Greek seasoning during the cooking process to make for an excellent mopping sauce for the otherwise unremarkable pita bread.
In a food world saturated with burgers, subs, and pizza, Grecian Gardens and their daily specials stand out as a different yet affordable way to get a quick lunch downtown. The total cost for a delicious and filling meal, Including soda, was less than $10.
Those of us who work in downtown are fortunate to have such a wide array of choices for lunch within walking distance. Grecian Gardens as well as the other restaurants located in City Market are a definite asset to the Indianapolis lunch scene.
Grecian Gardens (Inside City Market)
222 East Market St
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
Review Time: 12:30pm. 12/03/2012
Review Meal: Lunch
The Dork's Forks
Summary: Grecian Gardens quickly serves up delicious and filling Greek food at a very affordable price.