At Maggio’s Italiano, even for those that have never been to our restaurant in Alexandria, it’s pretty obvious that we serve Italian food. Our pizza, spaghetti, lasagna, and other classic Italian dishes have been having the mouth’s of our patrons’ water with anticipation for the fresh, in-house deliciousness since the day we opened the doors to our establishment. We’re proud of the Italian food that we serve, and will continue to provide it to our customers. However, what’s not immediately apparent to someone visiting our restaurant for the first time, is that we offer so much more than just Italian options!

Not only are we a comfortable place to relax and gather with family and friends, whether in the dining area or in our hookah lounge, but if your stomach isn’t rumbling for Italian, that’s completely okay! You’ll find our menu to have food options inspired by cultures all around the world! We serve American dishes such as wings, burgers, and a variety of sandwiches and subs. We also have classic Spanish dishes, seafood, and the topic of this blog post, Mediterranean/Greek food!

No matter what you’re craving, you’re guaranteed to find something that will make your taste buds jump with joy! In a previous post, we provided you with a rundown of the Greek flavors that we offer, but we’re going to narrow our focus on this one and talk specifically about a dish that is fastly becoming one of the most popular eats in America — the gyro! While the gyro is pretty simple as to the ingredients used and how it is prepared, the tastes that you get when the gyro meat (lamb and beef) is combined with tzatziki, fresh vegetables, placed in warm pita bread is unlike any other dish on the planet.

We’re going to provide you with a brief history of the gyro, a few interesting facts, and by the time you’ve finished reading, we won’t be surprised if you’re grabbing for your car keys to head this way or clicking over to order online now!

Pronunciation

If you’ve ever had a conversation with someone about gyros, it’s likely that you’ve heard all kind of pronunciations. Some pronounce it as “gee-rohs”, while others opt for “jai-rohs”, with a few other random pronunciations out there. While we’re not saying anyone is wrong, in fact, sometimes it just depends on where you may be and the dialect/language that is spoken, but the Greek pronunciation is “yee-rohs”. However, you can call it whatever you’d like when you order a gyro from Maggio’s, but we guarantee you’ll be calling them delicious when you’re done eating.

Brief History

The origination of the gyro is obviously Greek, however, food historians believe that the what we currently enjoy and even the name likely originated in New York during the 70’s. Incredibly simple but undeniably tasty, the gyro definitely resembles shawarma found in the Middle East, döner kebabs found in Turkey, and other Greek dishes. The secret lies in how it is prepared. The meet, whether lamb or beef, is slowly cooked on a rotating vertical spit and then sliced into thin strips when the meat is ready to go. This goes back thousands of years in Greece when soldiers would prepare their meat on knives and slowing turn it over the fire. This slow cooking really brings out the mouth-watering goodness of the meat, and when added with vegetables, tzatziki, and wrapped up in a warm pita like a blanket, the taste is “different” in the best way possible.

While the basics will remain the same, you can always add ingredients to make your gyro specific to what you like. Some are known to add fries to the dish, and others who like it spicy douse the gyro in hot sauce. It’s your gyro and you can do whatever you like to make it match your appetite!

Maggio’s Italiano

Are you craving a gyro yet? We know we are! Order yours online now or bring your family and friends with you to our restaurant in Alexandria. It doesn’t matter if they’re also craving a gyro or not, because we have so many options that we guarantee that every member of your group will find something to appease their appetite!