Longtime friends and business partners Kosta Papathanasiou and Dean Vasiliou have always dreamed of operating their own Greek restaurant. Learning homemade recipes and cooking techniques from their parents and grandmothers, their goal was to show customers there’s more to Greek food than just gyros.

Hailing from the small village of Variko, Florinas, which is in the northern part of Greece, Kosta and Dean have brought what they call a “real” Greek taste to Cincinnati as well as southeast Indiana. With Dean arriving in the states in 2000, Kosta followed in 2008 searching for greater opportunities.

“When I came to America I couldn’t speak English and I had no money—I started from the bottom up,” Kosta says. Residing in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, they saw there were no places in the area to enjoy Greek food. Shortly after, they opened Zorbas Gyros Greek Restaurant. Relying heavily on word-of-mouth, they brought their food to customers in festivals and saw how quickly people fell in love with the experience of enjoying Greek meals. “Everything we have is made from scratch including our recipes, our sauces and our spice mixes,” Kosta says.

Zorbas offers a variety of traditional lamb, chicken and veggie gyros. What makes Zorbas special is that they also offer other menu items that they encourage guests to try such as their signature soups and chili (which takes 15 hours to cook). I tried the potato soup that Kosta highly suggested and was impressed by the texture and taste of the massive chunks of potatoes. He later revealed they make the broth from the same ingredients used in their soups. For example, they make tomato broth for their tomato soup instead of using canned chicken broth.

For dinner they recommended the Pastichio, which is a Greek lasagna consisting of ground beef and penne pasta topped with feta cheese and baked in a homemade cream sauce. They also recommend the Grape Leaves Dinner, which are three stuffed grape leaves served with gyro meat and come with a Greek salad and pita bread.

Guests have the option of visiting one of two locations—1093 W. Eads Parkway in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, or 6520 Glenway Ave. in Western Hills. Guests will also be excited to know both locations offer different specials every week.

Jennifer Powell says she’s been a customer since they opened the Glenway location in 2016. “I always get the Zorbas salad. That comes with gyro meat on top, and I get the chili. You should definitely try it,” she says.

“We want them to get satisfaction,” Kosta says when asked what kind of impression they want to leave with their guests. Zorbas is surely serving up satisfaction to the Westside’s craving for the Greek dining experience.


To receive more articles from Cincy Magazine sign-up for a complimentary subscription here: http://bit.ly/1RHuu3g