by Todd Barron @ FoodieCuisine.com
“Wow!” is the easiest thing for me to say about Layla’s Gyros & Pizzaria in Little Rock, Arkansas. I met my wife for lunch there, not expecting much, but was blown away by some of the food.
We first ordered the Babba Ghannouj ($2.99) “Baked eggplant puree with tahini, parsley, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil”, the Hummus ($2.75) “Chick-pea puree with tahini, garlic, lemon juice & olive oil”, and the Tabbouleh ($3.20) “Bulgur wheat, green onions, tomatoes & parsley mixed with lemon juice & olive oil.”
The Hummus had a nice kick to it with cayenne on top and the texture was nice. It didn’t have the level of acidity I like in a Hummus but was better than most. The Babba Ghannouj was too creamy for me and needed more texture. I did like the cayenne on the top and the spice but wasn’t excited by it. The tabbouleh on the other hand was excellent and had a great consistency. I would definitely order it again.
I ordered the Gyros Sandwich ($4.65) with Feta added. The sandwich is described as “Served on a pita with marinated onions & taziki sauce.”. I also ordered the Greek Pizza ($6.95) to split with my wife which comes with your choice of chicken or Gyro. We opted for the Gyro on the pizza. The pizza is described as having “Feta & Mozzarella Cheese, samak marinated onions, your choice of meat Gyro or Chicken, Fresh Tomato on the top & taziki on side.”
The Gyros on the sandwich had a very nice crust to it which is much better than the mushy meat you get at some places. Not only was it crisp but it had a great flavor. The sandwich had plenty of feta cheese on it and the sauteed onions were wonderful. The pita was warmed as well and the entire thing was topped with a very flavorful taziki sauce. I can see myself going back very soon to have another Gyros, it was that good!
Here comes the big surprise. I didn’t expect to like the pizza given that it is a Gyros pizza after all. I mean, who thinks of pizza when they think of Greek food? I sure don’t but wow was I surprised. The Greek Pizza was the best thing we had and was super flavorful. It had plenty of Gyros meat on it and was formed on a brick-oven style crust. There was no marinara sauce to have but instead they used melted cheese, feta, and the taziki sauce (on the side.) The onions were nice and spiced as well and overall the entire pizza tasted great.
I actually can’t wait to go back again and have the pizza. That’s saying something too since I can be pretty critical about food.
A word of warning though. Do not go there for a formal dinner or expecting to have a quiet subdued lunch. The place is small and loud and reminds me of the restaurants I used to eat lunch at in Philadelphia. Expect to get in, eat, and get out. It’s very loud too so I wouldn’t expect to have any life changing conversations there.