Why wasn't there more cheap, delicious souvlaki in New York City (well, outside of Astoria) before the Souvlaki GR truck came along again? Thankfully we don't have to dwell on that too much anymore. Abby Sierros, her husband Pavlos, and their longtime friend Kostas Plagos (Greek-sounding enough for ya?) were chatting about that very issue during World Cup season this year, when they finally decided to make it happen.
Since last month the Aegean-blue truck has been parking in Union Square, SoHo, and elsewhere in Manhattan (check @souvlakitruck for their daily whereabouts). Kostas and Pavlos wanted it to feel as true to the real-deal souvlakias as possible: from the ingredients to the custom-made charcoal grill to the make-you-wanna-shimmy-in-line Greek music.
Sticking to authenticity, that also means no lamb. Wait, and this is a Greek truck? "We get asked this question a lot, and it makes my husband crazy," says Abby. Lamb was, at least originally, a meat you prepared for special meals, like Easter, at home. It wasn't really restaurant food. "A true Greek orders a souvlaki pita and he means pork," clarified Abby. "That's always been the meat in the pita sandwich."
They grill both pork and chicken inside the truck for the Souvlaki Stix, which are only $1.50 per skewer and come with a slice of olive oil-brushed-then-grilled pita. Or you can get the grilled meats in sandwich form ($2.50), folded up with floppy French fries, tomato, lettuce shreds, and a swizzle of tzatziki sauce in a bigger piece of the warm, pillowy pita. You'll inhale it in five or so bites, and probably wish you got another (and you should turn around and do just that) but it makes a great snack-meal on the fly too.
The Bifteki Sandwich ($3) made us happy, too: ground beef, also charcoal-grilled to get all those zesty grill flavors, in a pita with chopped onions, mint, tomato, bright feta nuggets, and cold tzatzaki.
It should also be noted that there's a sweet fridge (stocked with your average sodas for $1) built until the side of the truck.