On a recent sunny Southern California afternoon, we had the pleasure of noshing our way through Disney California Adventure park – and marveling at the diversity of quick bites, from Mexican to Asian to all-American. Among our favorite picnic-style meals was the hearty beef gyro at Paradise Garden Grill, found at a walk-up window with a surprising repertoire of robust Mediterranean tastes.
That gyro had thick slabs of spiced beef wrapped in a warm pita, slathered with cool, creamy tzatziki and a side of taboulleh, the Middle Eastern version of a green salad with bulgur wheat, tomatoes, cucumbers and fresh parsley in a lemony dressing. Enough for two. But we also shared the generous Greek salad, a plate full of greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, spicy pepperoncini, feta cheese and lots of olives with a lemon-oregano dressing and warm pita to scoop it all up.
If you’re looking for a simpler taste, the skewers are another good bet – pick from grilled steak, chicken, meatball or veggies and tofu, each with a side of rice, cucumber salad and warm pita. Kick it up with one of three sauces: spicy chili with harissa (hot chili pepper paste), chimichurri with a base of fresh citrus and herbs, or mild cucumber yogurt.
The skewers go from savory to sweet with a strawberry-brownie skewer with caramel, chocolate sauce and mini-marshmallows. But we prefer their classic baklava, the sweet Mediterranean desserts with layers of flaky phyllo, honey and nuts. Sit, back, enjoy the sunshine and imagine you’re in Greece, or Turkey – but California Screamin’ awaits!