At the other end of the spectrum, Jimmy Grants in Collingwood brings a marginally more refined version, albeit in a very casual and funky setting, featuring their soft, pillowy pita bread with a variety of fillings and, my favourite addition of all, crispy chips. I had the pleasure of having a few of these wonderful souvlakis a few years ago - the "Hellenic Republic" open lamb souvlaki which featured at the Taste of Melbourne festival in The Press Club's stand. Ever since then, my heart has been set on that souvlaki I had many years ago.
Nonna Maria and Mr Papadopoulos souvlakis
Friday night and Jimmy Grants is pumping. Entering the establishment, a waitress greets us and gives us a few options for seating, we opt for outdoor seating - despite the cold, they have heaters outside and it's far less crowded although the only pitfall is that they cannot serve alcohol in that area (booooo). Ordering is done up front at the counter and it is fairly painless.
My chicken souvlaki was filled with crispy chunks of chicken, flavoursome and I loved the fluffy pita bread which lacked any greasiness. I don't even hate the onions in it. It definitely raises my expectations of souvlakis - I'm not sure if I can handle those midnight souvlaki vendors any more!?
Nonna Maria ($7.50)
Mr A asked for a lamb souvlaki and he was extremely impressed. He appreciated that it contained real chunks of lamb meat, rather than the processed lamb mush that is often served, and the addition of the crisp chips and mustard aioli complement well with the thick pita wrap. The souvlaki is flavoured so that it isn't too salty and allows for more seasoning if your palates finds it necessary.
Mr papadopoulos ($8)
The chips with feta were hard to go past but seeing as the souvlakis already contained chips, I ordered the healthy grain salad made up of pulses, nuts, grains, herbs and dolloped with Greek yoghurt. It is crunchy, zesty and very filling. A tasty yet filling salad which opened up our appetites.
Grain salad ($8)
We've since been back to have the chips with garlic oil, feta and oregano ($6) as well as the fresh cucumber salad ($7). Both were delicious while the desserts we had were even better.
The Greek doughnuts were crispy outside and light and fluffy inside with a drippy honey and walnut topping. Jimmy's wheel - his take on the classic wagon wheel was a crowd favourite. With a surprise filling of peanut butter amongst the marshmallow, chocolate and biscuit.
Greek doughnuts with honey & walnut ($6) and Jimmy's wheel ($6)
Jimmy's wheel ($6)
I have heard that people feel the souvlakis are on the small side but we were satisfied and full after our meal, no complaints from us. Goodbye, Jimmy Grants. You fed us well and at such a reasonable price. We are sure to return and bring many friends for a great Greek feast. Thanks!
So let me pose this question to you - are souvlakis your choice of drunken food? If not, what is?
Anyway, before you go, check out the amazing photos of "Jimmy Grants Unwrapped" - how funky!!
Will I return? Yes, great feed for a fantastic price.
113 St. David Street
Fitzroy VIC 3065
(03) 9416 0060
Daily 11am - 10pm