As I mentioned in my review of their sister location, the Overland location of The Gyro Shack is not exactly more of the same. Yes, the menus are very similar, right down to the prices. And while I love both locations, for me the Ustick branch has a slight edge. I’m going to lay out the reasons why, but please keep in mind that this is not a negative review, just a slightly less favorable comparison. Moving on…
The Gyro Shack on Overland is just East of Cole Road, in the parking lot of the long strip of stores and the Overland Park Cinemas. Both locations have recently been on daily deal sites, but as the locations are independently owned the certificates are location-specific. The Overland location hooked up with Boise.biz to offer $10 vouchers for only $5, so I snapped up two.
When I went to use the first one, I decided to branch out a bit. Since I had just written about the deluxe beef and lamb gyro from the Ustick location, I figured I’d check out a couple of the other options. Knowing that I’d never be able to finish two gyros but having money to spare, I ordered a Deluxe Chicken and a Veggie.
|Deluxe Chicken Gyro|
This is a good time to bring up the first of the minor issues I have with the Overland location, which is their use of feta cheese. Both locations charge an extra dollar to add feta to your food, and while it’s nice to get your money’s worth, this location goes a little overboard in my opinion. It doesn’t seem to bother anyone else that I’ve talked to, but personally I like the taste of the veggies and the spices in the meat, and if all I can taste is feta then I end up a little disappointed. Next time I’m going to see if I can get it on the side and add it myself, or perhaps ask if I can have a little less than the full amount. That having been said, if you love gyros with lots of feta (or even if you just love feta in general), you should check this place out. As far as the meat goes, cooking chicken for gyros gives it an interesting texture that some have described as odd, but it is a gyro after all. If you just want a grilled chicken pita sandwich or something, there are plenty of other options around.
I’d been curious about the Veggie Gyro for some time, but on this visit a little sign on the side of the shack caught my attention. The sign indicated that the Veggie Gyros were now being made with The Gyro Shack’s own proprietary falafel. That was just too much to resist, so I ordered one. In my experience, falafel is fried and winds up a little crispy on the outside. I figured they would shape it into a patty, fry it, and then slice it into strips to make it as much like a traditional gyro as possible, but that wasn’t the case. This was more like a paste, and therefore felt more like a hummus and pita sandwich. The central ingredient is the same, but to myself at least the texture makes a huge difference. Once again though, this is nitpicking. The flavor was still very good and this is something I might even order again on the rare occasions that the traditional beef and lamb combination isn’t doing it for me.
About a week later, I decided to burn the other voucher. This time I decided to keep it simple and just got the standard $2.99 Original Gyro, figuring it would be the best way to deal with the feta issue. My only complaint this time was that the meat was a little on the dry side, though for all I know that could easily be a hazard of operating a tiny shack with two drive-through windows in freezing weather when you have meat rotating on an open-air broiler. Once again, this is a minor complaint. The meat wasn’t inedible or tough by any stretch of the imagination, just not quite as juicy as it is at Ustick.
As I said, I personally feel that the Ustick branch does things just a little bit better, but both locations are very good. I’ve eaten at both on numerous occasions, and will continue to do so, and you certainly won’t find a better deal on gyros around Boise. Of course if I’m wrong and you do find a better deal, feel free to get in touch…
Final Grade: B