Monday, June 25, 2018

Eating up the Hill: How to get a decent gyro from the Parliamentary cafeteria

You need to have your expectations set realistically when you visit the Parliamentary cafeteria, given the limitations of a mass fast-service cafeteria setting. That said, there are some things they do well, like pastas and stir fries. Gyros would be on the other list, but friends, it can be saved.

The first time I had the gyro (one of the specials in the six-week rotation) I was very disappointed. They took a cold, not particularly soft pita, cut it in half, and put a decent enough amount of gyro meat, as well as onion, tomato and lettuce, between the now two pieces of bread and served it like a sandwich, greek salad (with real feta, mmm) and taziki sauce on the side.

No no no. It was messy and difficult to eat, and the pita hard and near inedible. Won't be having this again, I decided.

But six weeks later, not feeling the other options, I had a thought, and decided to try the gyro again. But this time, with some special handling instructions which the staff were happy to accommodate.

"Could you warm the pita up on the grill for me?" I asked. Not a problem.

A few minutes later. "Please don't cut the pita in half. Just, you know, fold it over." This one seemed to throw them for a bit more of a loop, but they complied.

And I was left with, for a cafeteria, a perfectly good gyro. Heating the pita makes all the difference, and the fold over is how it's meant to be eaten.

It won't make you think of Greece, but it will get you to dinner.

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