Sometimes a gyro comes along that gives me the strength to carry on, i.e., return to work after lunch when I would rather be napping. In this instance, my gyro wears a potato bun rather than a pita because it comes in the form of JCI Grill’s Greek Gyro Dog.
Although the link between Hellas and hot dogs is ostensibly tenuous, for James Coney Island founders Tom and James Papadaki, from Greece via New York, the connection is clear. And while the brothers never debuted a Greek-style hot dog in their lifetime, the chefs at JCI decided to pay tribute to them via this creation, banking on its success given the popularity of the chain’s Greek salad.
When I was invited to try the Greek Gryo Dog, I was worried that the addition of gyro meat to an already salty beef frankfurter would put the entire dish over the top with regards to sodium content and make for an eating experience that would dehydrate me faster than a 60-minute SoulCycle class. Remarkably, and probably as a testament to rigorous testing of the toppings’ composition and proportions, the gyro dog was extraordinarily well-balanced. The frankfurter was juicy and boasted the familiar snap I love in a well-prepared dog, and the shavings of gyro meat peppery and tender. Countering these strong bovine flavors was an ample amount of garlic zing from the tzatziki, dairy tang from the feta cheese, and refreshing garden notes from the red onions and tomatoes.
Accompanying the dog are two deep-fried “gyro bites” plus an additional side of tzatziki for dipping, because, well, you can never have too much of what I like to call “Greek ketchup."
The Greek Gyro dog is available at all JCI Grill locations, apparently at least for the next few months. I would urge JCI leadership to consider making this a permanent addition to the menu, but lest the gods not be in our favor, try one for yourself as soon as possible because missing out would be a real tragedy.