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Restaurants

It's All GRK

Posted by Liora Ipsum / Profiled on September 24, 2013 / review policy

It's All GRKIt's All GRK is the newly opened gyro shop situated on Queen West in the former home of Bellwood Bar & Grill. Co-owners Nick Freda (Valdez), Matty Tzoumaris (Valdez, The One That Got Away) and Nathan Godin wanted to update the hallmark format of the greasy spoon Greek joint that peaked in the '90s on the Danforth and has since seen little improvement.

It's All GRK TorontoThis Greek joint is more palatable for a number of reasons, beginning with the contemporary decor designed by Ian Rydberg of SOLID Design & Build, whose recent works also include La Carnita, Home of the Brave and Valdez. There two rows of communal high-top tables surrounded by blue and white stools, the walls display imported products and personal relics from Tzoumaris' family olive farm where he spent his summers in Greece.

It's All GRK TorontoOrder at the counter off the black board menu from four types of meat in one of four formats. There's pork, chicken, beefteki (similar to a a burger patty) and souvlaki available as a pita-wrapped gyro, an open-faced piato, a rice an potato packed dinner platter, or, with a horiatiki (village) salad.

It's All GRKIn the kitchen, they've snagged ex-Marben chef, Greg Welch who carries over the ingrained focus on fresh, quality ingredients and made-from-scratch mentality. Rest assured that there is no dubious mixed-meat gyro here. The rotisserie spits are built daily by hand from top quality meats and then marinated overnight before being broiled from fresh each day.

On the spits today are pork and chicken. The pork layers alternating cuts of belly, shoulder, ham and neck that caramelizes as it turns towards the heat. The chicken is composed mainly of white meat (from grain fed, antibiotic free poultry of course), it's ribboned with dark meat for maximum flavour and moistness but minimum fat.

It's All GRKThe gyros are excellent, I tried both the pork ($7) and chicken ($8) topped with house-made tzakiki (yiayia's recipe) and perfectly ripe, chunks of tomato, cucumber and fries, really good fries. On the side we try out the GRK fries ($4.50) too, sprinkled with feta and oregano.

If you order the souvlaki sticks à la carte ($3.75) it comes with a little complimentary side of GRK fries. The skewered nuggets of chicken are browned lightly on each side and are perfectly plump and juicy.

It's All GRKThe village salad ($7/$9) is composed in thoughtful proportions: a square slab of feta sits over chunky, chopped Roma tomatoes, cucumbers, black olives, and slivers of red onion. This isn't just some chintzy, filler side salad, it's really excellent -- it makes Greek food for me, a viable daily option not just reserved for late-night post bar binges.

It's All GRKVegetarians can expect additional options to be introduced like lentil soups, vegetarian gyros and Piperies Gemistes (stuffed peppers). To drink, there are imported Greek sodas and spring water. For the opening, they're offering complimentary baklava.

It's All GRK is open daily from 11am to10am. Delivery is coming!

It's All GRKPhotos by Jesse Milns

Discussion

64 Comments

nikster / September 24, 2013 at 12:59 pm
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I want!
Rudy / September 24, 2013 at 01:05 pm
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"There are three spits on today; one pork, one chicken."

Well the math certainly checks out...
Kait / September 24, 2013 at 01:20 pm
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Been there twice, food is incredible. It's so nice to finally have some authentic Greek food downtown and so close to home. The food and the atmosphere makes me feel like in back in Greece! Definitely one of Toronto's best Greek spots!
Rico / September 24, 2013 at 01:28 pm
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The guys are hottttttt
Kelly / September 24, 2013 at 01:30 pm
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Very hot! Great food too ;)
Sasho / September 24, 2013 at 01:39 pm
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Unreal. Best gyros in the city hands down. Highly recommend it!!!!
Pepsi_Pepsi_coke_coke / September 24, 2013 at 01:51 pm
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Gyros are gross, they look like stomache cancer. Has it come to this that blogto is reviewing Greek greasy fast food now? Ugh….
disgusted / September 24, 2013 at 01:59 pm
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boycot on principle. nothing can replace bellwoods bar and grill, especially not this most sanitised yet still gross looking place.
JohnnyUtah / September 24, 2013 at 02:05 pm
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Without a doubt the best Greek food around.
Cyril Sneer / September 24, 2013 at 02:05 pm
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Apparently dropping vowels from your name is cool now?
guffaws / September 24, 2013 at 02:13 pm
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"This Greek joint is more palatable for a number of reason"

No, only one reason, actually. This restaurant is on Queen West, and therefore acceptable for hipsters to frequent. Mexican food became "more palatable" when higher priced cool restaurants started interpreting Mexican food to people who wouldn't be caught dead travelling to more authentic restos in the city, and in general never even seemed to know they existed already. As soon as we get the Queen West translation of ethnic food, we are usually told that FINALLY we have authentic food from "Insert Country Here", because it is now in a restaurant that we personally have become familiar with. When we "discover" food ourselves, we sometimes assume that we are the first in the city to experience it. Funny how that works!
vonna / September 24, 2013 at 02:30 pm
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YUMMMMMMM!! Food is delicious. Tomatoes are tasty, juicy perfections that add a wonderful dimension to the village salad. Restaurant is beautiful and spotless. Addictive.
MrPotato / September 24, 2013 at 02:53 pm
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Fish Chart, Greek Chart, coming soon Thai Chart, Mexican Chart and Chinese Chart! Brought to you by the people who make chart menus!
turrbile / September 24, 2013 at 03:20 pm
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I cant wait till "Taste of the Queen St." next summer.

foodie_v / September 24, 2013 at 03:21 pm
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It's All GRK is a welcome addition to the neighbourhood - Where else in the area can you find fresh, fast and authentic Greek that doesn't leave you with the itis? I'm all for it.

The staff were friendly and greeted us as soon as the door swung open. While we browsed the menu items, they took the time to explain everything and even threw in some fun facts about the authenticity of the menu (yiayia means "grandma") and service was quick - we were in and out in just under an hour.

We started off with the village and cretan salads which were both fresh, flavourful and not drowning in an oily dressing. Although the tomatoes could have been slightly more ripe, the cucumbers were cold fresh and crunchy and there were enough slivers of red onion to add that Greek salad kick. The cretan salad comes with a crouton underneath the greens which surprisingly held up it's form and added texture to the overall salad - perfect. I'm not one for olives so I left those to my friend. The salads were a great way to start off the meal and the servings lasted throughout our entire seating, perfectly complimenting the pork and beefteki piatos. We also ordered a serving of the feta fries for the table - delicious!

The meat to pita ratio of each piato were impressive, leaving both of us feeling satisfied but not too full. The pork was moist but not greasy, leaving the pita soft but not soggy and therefore still enjoyable (and dip-able!). You could also tell that the kitchen pays close attention and puts out a perfectly cooked beefteki (2 patties) that isn't charred or undercooked. The piatos are served with the traditional gyro toppings on the side, and had we not ordered the feta fries, each piato comes with a small handful of regular fries for those who want just a few more bites without over indulging (Note: Fries dipped in tzatziki are a must!).

The overall vibe is casual which works in well with the neighbourhood and makes this spot a great place to grab a quick bite solo or with friends. Our overall experience was positive and we will definitely go back again. Congratulations and welcome to the hood It's All GRK!
Lonely Troll replying to a comment from disgusted / September 24, 2013 at 04:03 pm
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I'll try this out as soon as I finish digesting the Bellwoods Super Burger I had last winter.
sampson / September 24, 2013 at 04:32 pm
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been there twice. the gyros are dry and lacking flavour. doesn't come close to messini on danforth.
Elle / September 24, 2013 at 05:42 pm
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I have been here many times since they opened. The staff is friendly. The atmosphere and decor are great and the food is delicious. It a great new addition to queen west. Portions are very large and well priced.
Jeremey / September 24, 2013 at 06:27 pm
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Wow! I haven't had a gyro like this since I last visited Greece! And I have tried everywhere in Toronto! The gyro was packed with meat and so tender and juicy. I've had messini, they use Lebanese pita and tastes more middle eastern than Greek. All I can say is I will be back! Again and again and again!
Herman Menderchuk replying to a comment from disgusted / September 24, 2013 at 07:16 pm
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Bellwoods Bar and Grill? You mean that place with the revolving door of waitresses who were treated like garbage by the perverted owner?
nardl blarn replying to a comment from Herman Menderchuk / September 24, 2013 at 07:40 pm
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Yes, the wonderful family run business with genuinely friendly staff, an amazing burger special and an even better breakfast special. That was a real neighbourhood establishment and something you wouldn't understand if you just visit an area like a tourist (or even worse, if you live in an area like a tourist).
brandon / September 24, 2013 at 07:41 pm
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I thought I landed in Greece. That's how authentic the food was. Definitely be a regular. Good portions and fresh ingredients.
Scarlett / September 24, 2013 at 07:56 pm
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Love the food, love the place.......I love GRK.

You gotta try it .
Big "v" / September 24, 2013 at 08:03 pm
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As a long time chef finally there is a healthy alternative with real customer service and great food they have kicked it up a "notch" you might have to open a mid city location to share the culinary experience .
Oliver / September 24, 2013 at 08:33 pm
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They filled a huge void, and did a fantastic job! Will come back!
annakarenina / September 24, 2013 at 10:07 pm
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the best gyros in athens and pretty much everywhere in Greece are 2-3 euros MAX. 7 bucks for a gyro??! really?!
Visualhornet / September 24, 2013 at 10:28 pm
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Food sucks , overpriced dry meat, the dinner is typical cheap Greek food tons of carbs , and a small stick of protein , step up ur game, and you might have a shot
Amy / September 24, 2013 at 11:27 pm
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I've been to this restaurant on my lunch break twice already and everything that I had tasted really fresh and healthy. For around ten bucks I got a gyro, fries, and a pop which is good in my books. If you read the article it says "all the meats are locally sourced, grain fed, and hormone free. If you want a cheaper alternative full of hormones and packed with sodium try a hot dog vendor for 5 bucks @annakarenina. This isn't Greece...welcome to Toronto...quality isn't cheap, so stop being such a hater.
Natalie / September 24, 2013 at 11:46 pm
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Honestly best gyro of my life!! I left wishing I could have more and the service was fantastic. Can't wait to go back!!
Shawn / September 25, 2013 at 12:28 am
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What's a Piato? Googling it doesn't really bring up any relevant answers, and the review doesn't say why it costs $3 more than a gyro (more meat?) other than that its open faced....
lol / September 25, 2013 at 12:48 am
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Sweet dreams my 5.99 6 Egg Breakfast Special
Rick / September 25, 2013 at 08:00 am
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the piato is an open face, deconstructed gyro with larger portions of each ingredient! Soooo good!
Tanya replying to a comment from Shawn / September 25, 2013 at 08:08 am
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I think it's "plate"
Gabrielle / September 25, 2013 at 08:27 am
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Soul food!!! Makes me want to go back to the homeland. 12 out of 10, can't wait to go back just to see Nicky's cute face ;)
Jenna / September 25, 2013 at 10:30 am
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The food is delicious and authentic. Tastes like its straight from Greece. I've had it a few times and can't wait to go back. Hits the spot every time and leaves you craving more. Try everything, but especially the chicken skewers, feta fries and more and more of that
Super awesome place and the guys are pretty cute too
Jenna / September 25, 2013 at 10:34 am
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*** and more and more of that tzatziki sauce!
fitting / September 25, 2013 at 10:50 am
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"Get Me AWAY from The Grk"
Blahb / September 25, 2013 at 11:33 am
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$17.99 for a Souvlaki dinner, at a take out spot no less. YIKES.
Hungree / September 25, 2013 at 02:54 pm
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pork gyros all day!! love this spot. fast, friendly and full of taste.
lighthouse / September 25, 2013 at 02:55 pm
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pork gyros 6.99 is whats up!
Nikos / September 25, 2013 at 07:38 pm
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Too bad that menu is actually Turkish. Greeks do what they do best. Steal everyone else's culture and take claim to it. See Turkish coffee.
AMM / September 26, 2013 at 12:46 pm
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Pretty good, but not at all comparable to Messini's on the Danforth where you can get a huge, mouth-watering gyro (lamb, pork, or chicken, with fries) for $5.
B replying to a comment from Nikos / September 27, 2013 at 01:34 pm
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Haters gonna hate
Mike_To / September 30, 2013 at 10:39 am
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Looking forward to the Vegetarian Gyros. Hoping it comes sooner rather than later!
Kate Awesome replying to a comment from disgusted / September 30, 2013 at 09:48 pm
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The Bellwoods was horrifying. WHO NEEDS 5 EGG OMLETTES?!?

I can't wait to try out GRK!
Ryan / October 23, 2013 at 03:12 pm
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The place looks great but the food is super generic and bland. Someone must have a friend with blogto ;)

Clearly just a couple dudes taking a run at a trend that is already on the decline.
STFU replying to a comment from Nikos / November 1, 2013 at 08:14 am
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no, the beans, roasting, and overall grind are different. prepared the same way though. Go home bud.
Amanda / November 11, 2013 at 01:15 pm
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Had the pork gyro today, was good but wayy too much sauce put on it. As much as the food was really good the service was disappointing. I was the only one in the place waiting to order and the guy at the counter sat texting on his phone for a while before taking my order and when he finally acknowledged me there he made me feel as if me supporting his restaurant was a bother to him. Hope it does well enough to stick around but definitely needs to improve their customer service skills.
Easton / November 14, 2013 at 12:27 pm
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I can never eat Greek from a mall food court again. Officially in love with this place.
LL replying to a comment from nikster / January 6, 2014 at 07:23 pm
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Let me start by saying I love the food from It's All Grk.

However, I have a few comments/suggestions:

- the last two times I ordered there was a hair in my salad. yuck! (noticed that the kitchen staff don't wear hairnets.)
- the salad is delicious except it is drenched in oil, they could ease up on the oil
- when I call for delivery or take out it takes multiple tries until they finally answer, if at all
- the delivery radius is too limited, wish they'd expand

Other than this the food is amazing and I'll keep going in hopes that they read this and take on my suggestions.
Sarah / January 27, 2014 at 07:46 pm
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I always ask no olives & no feta on my salad when I get take-out but every time I call again, the girl tells me that she isn't sure if I'm allowed to order the salad without olives & feta.. and I always tell her that it's always fine....and she always puts me on hold to ask her manager... and it's always fine!! This has happened 6 times. Why you no learrnnnn- WHYY!!

Love the food though- just can't help but laugh at the girl on the phone every time.
lj / February 20, 2014 at 05:39 pm
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more red onions please, its too important to the meal.
Jessica / March 10, 2014 at 04:29 pm
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Great authentic Greek food! Walking in and seeing the spits of meat made me fall in love. Staff was friendly. Lots of options. Great food and great atmosphere! Definitely recommend it
Juice Bar Experience / March 17, 2014 at 12:03 pm
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New location opening soon at Bloor / Walmer too.
Dimitra / March 19, 2014 at 07:10 pm
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I drive by this restaurant on my way to work every day and today was the first time I went in for food. After reading such a great review, I had high expectations. What did I discover after my friends and I ordered the Cretan Salad, Horiatiki with 2 chicken skewers, and chicken souvlaki on a pita? Under seasoned meat that was dry, lettuce in a plastic container with no dressing, and an incorrect order that I received in lieu of my chicken souvlaki…..not to mention the prices are ridiculous for what's being offered.

Highly disappointed. Stick to Astoria or Messini. Better value and better food.
Stas / April 2, 2014 at 10:14 pm
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So I went there tonight to try this highly recommended, hyped place. The food is just okay, I tried beef dinner, bread was nice. And that is the only thing I would remember about their food. Staff is nice, place itself is pretty cute. But I find it a bit overpriced, at least for the food quality they offer. 3/5
Rogi Minskov replying to a comment from Resto-pro / April 22, 2014 at 01:11 pm
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OMG! Yesterdays meat, hair in the food, too much feta, way too much sauce, not enough red onions, servers not listening! Oh, this is my kind of place. Food and entertainment at a decent price. Hair I come.
lulz / May 2, 2014 at 05:50 pm
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Checked out the Bloor St location today just by fluke. I had never heard of this place before so I decided to give it a shot. The place is legit. I had the pork gyro plate and It was great. The price was also about right. I found it funny how that one girl compared the prices to Athens lol. Gas is also cheaper in Iraq...
If you dodnt like the chicken, try the pork... Chicken is for tourists anyways.
Reviewer / May 2, 2014 at 08:23 pm
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Not impressed. Got the chicken dinner. Comparable to what I've had a shawrama place. The salad was obviously a bag salad, and I don't even think could be considered Greek. There were no olives or feta on the salad. Only a tiny, tiny amount of tzatziki was included in the dinner. All this for $17. Only good thing was the decor. Not going back.
tony replying to a comment from sampson / May 22, 2014 at 08:56 am
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Messini is garbage!
C / May 23, 2014 at 07:33 pm
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I love the food here! Finally Greek food has made it to Queen West. However, after my third time there I am frustrated with the lack of recycling and non plastic cutlery! It would be nice to enjoy a glass of free Toronto tap water instead of buying bottled.
XARIS O PONTIOS / July 1, 2014 at 06:43 pm
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I'm in Canada three years, I believed that the only way to eat a traditional gyro and from Greece would be to go to Greece. lies!!!!!, the other day I ate a gyro that I ate in Greece bravo ... I wish to be "OPEN" on danforth, need something really Greek the danforth. BRAVO.
Anthony / August 22, 2014 at 04:23 pm
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Tried the new one at Bloor and Walmer. Couldn't eat the Gyro. And no restaurant should call themselves Greek without having Dolmades on the menu.
Sir / October 22, 2014 at 12:23 am
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This is not Greek food, it's Macedonian.

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