By: Mark Hancock
Basil Mediterranean Cafe is a friendly place. The staff takes the time to describe each dish and even makes recommendations based on your preferences.
The restaurant is spacious and has a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere. It’s set up almost like a fast-food joint, a look that is matched by its brisk service. It’s probably best suited for a quick bite or perhaps a night out with the family.
On my first visit, I decided to order a large Greek salad ($4.75) and a gyro sandwich ($4.50). The salad came out first, and it was immediately clear that “large” was an understatement.
The dish featured romaine lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, pepperoncinis, feta cheese and kalamata olives. It was served with warm pita bread and topped with Greek dressing. The salad was fresh and delicious, but a small version ($2.75) definitely would have sufficed for one person.
The gyro was packed with flavorful gyro meat (made up of 80 percent lamb and 20 percent beef), tomatoes, red onions and lettuce. It was all nestled in a large pita with a fantastic tzatziki sauce on the side. Like the salad, it was quite large and equally satisfying.
On another visit to Basil, this time for lunch, I brought along a guest.
The restaurant has an excellent appetizer selection, including hummus ($4.50), falafel ($3.25) and tabouli ($2.75).
The falafel, which came in an order of four pieces, had a crispy outside with a warm center and was served with tzatziki sauce. The warm treat mixed with the cool sauce was a very tasty combination. The hummus, topped with drizzled olive oil and sprinkled paprika, was flavorful and rightly paired with warm pita.
The tabouli, clearly fresh and flavorful, featured complementary flavors of parsley and lemon.
of the entree options include the beef kabob ($9.75) and the veggie
kabob ($8.25). The latter came stacked with grilled squash, tomatoes,
zucchini, mushrooms and red onions and was served on a bed of tasty
kabob was served the same, and the meat was tender and juicy, grilled
to perfection. Both dishes came with a large side of the tzatziki sauce
and pita bread.
Given the large portions at Basil, both my guest and I left with a full to-go box.
are plenty of Mediterranean spots around the metro area these days, but
affordable, quality food and a friendly atmosphere help separate Basil
from the rest.