Beginning the in the early 1900s, Greek immigrants have settled all across the U.S., with communities in Baltimore and Chicago further growing this one-of-a-kind culture. Though Colorado does not have an especially dense population like these other cities, many chefs in the city – including a few Boulder culinary graduates – are nonetheless continuing the tradition of truly great Greek diners and restaurants. Craving some tiropitas or fakes soup? Here are the must-visit Greek eateries in Boulder:
1. The Mediterranean Restaurant: As its name might imply, The Mediterranean Restaurant encompasses dishes from Morocco, France, Spain, Italy, Lebanon and, of course, Greece. Yet despite the sheer number of culinary traditions that they touch upon, the Med, as the staff call the restaurant, has a commitment to the food served from lunch to late-night tapas over drinks. Greek dishes include lamb or chicken kebabs served with onions, peppers, and olive tapenade, Greek-style grilled meats like hanger steak, scallops and beef tenderloin, and the signature Greca salad, a medley of romaine lettuce, onions, pepperoncinis, olives, feta and a housemade vinaigrette. A visit to the Med wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the bakery, which cooks up Greek desserts like skaltsounia pastries and lenten honey puffs.
2. Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill: Greek food is not only regularly touted for being rich in flavor, but it’s also quite healthy, providing a great mix of vitamins, proteins and minerals. With its menu, Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill has sought to emphasize the beneficial side of Greek cuisine, creating simple, traditional dishes with organic ingredients. Garbanzo serves a wide array of combo plates, Greek salads, pitas, wraps and much more. Some of the options include grilled chicken, roasted gyro meat, chicken or steak kabobs, Portobello mushrooms and traditional falafel, all served with creamy tzatziki sauce. Garbanzo also caters larger group events, offering the same fresh, healthy take on Greek plates as they do if there is two people or 200 party guests.
3. Mediterranean Market & Deli: Mediterranean Market & Deli does have a physical location – just minutes away from the Pearl Street Mall – buit it’s also one of the few Greek places that will deliver across much of Boulder. But whether you’re dining in or eating from the comfort of your couch, you’ll still be treated to authentic Greek meals. One of the more frequent choices is the combination platters, in which guests can enjoy several sandwiches – like gyro, hummus and falafel – a house salad with gyro and feta, or a signature veggie combo and one of three sides. Looking for a more traditional Greek plate? There is also the tabouli salad, a platter of baba ghanoush and spinakopitas, pastries filled with spinach, scallions and feta.
4. Falafel King: Given this restaurant’s regal-sounding moniker, you’d expect truly great Greek food. And that’s just what the staff has been delivering since the early 1980s, as one of the first Greek-style eateries in the region to make more organic, wholesome dinner options. To this day, Falafel King only uses locally-sourced meats and vegetables for its menu, which continues to expand every year it’s in business. Beyond just standard gyros, salad bowls, hummus, baba ghanoush and vegetable platters, the restaurant also has a number of signature dishes. Those include the Med Rice Bowl – which pairs basmati rice, and beans with shawarma or chicken, – a Jerusalem-style pita warp with shawarma or gyro meat, and the Athens Plate, which features falafel balls, spice pita, feta and mixed greens.