Guru’s Rapid Review: Zeko’s Mediterranean Grill
City: St. Petersburg, Fl (West of Tampa Bay)
With several locations across the greater Tampa Bay area, Zeko’s Mediterranean Grill, this locally owned chain serves Halal Mediterranean foods. They were founded in 2006 and have been expanding since with their emphasis on healthy, handmade restaurant quality meals. With these values in place, it makes for an attractive destination for tourists and locals alike after a long day in the sun. The restaurants have a casual family friendly vibe great for dining in. In this review, we visited Zeko’s Mediterranean Grill in St. Petersburg near the gulf coast beaches.
As with many Mediterranean restaurant, the focus is on healthy and grilled foods. The menu consists of many traditional items expected from a Mediterranean or Middle-Eastern restaurant. They break-up their menu based on the proteins: chicken, beef/lamb, seafoods. They also have several vegetarian options including falafels and salads. They offer the traditional kabobs, shawarma and gyro meat options in rice platter or pita sandwich form. With an emphasis on healthy, handmade quality ingredients, the bold and colourful flavours come shining through. Meals are cooked fresh to order, so there is some wait-time involved which is well worth it.
Interestingly, they have also added some traditionally American fast food items including beef burgers, beef steak and grilled chicken hoagies as well as fried chicken tenders. The beef burger, called the “Zbuger” is made with in-house prepared ground beef served with fresh lettuce, tomatoes and pickles on a large bun. The fries are thick cut and have the outer crispy crunch with a soft center. A nice feature is that they make their own fresh bread, in house which is a testament to their commitment to control over quality.
The restaurant is setup for traditional counter service much like many other fast-food restaurants. You enter, place your order and then pick up your food at the counter and take it to a table in their dining-in space. They employees behind the counter are friendly and helpful and attend to your requests if you have any.
Entering the restaurant you are greeted with a warm, open space with many vibrant colours creating a Mediterranean feel. The seating area is scattered with several small tables and booths which can accommodate dining parties between 2 to 6 comfortably. There is some outdoor seating as well.
The St. Petersburg location is located in a well visited tourist area and provides a safe, convenient, comfortable location to dine in at. The restaurant is not too far from the beach and is a great option for a crisp refreshing meal after spending time in the hot Floridian sun.
Considering the menu consists of fresh quality ingredients all prepared in house, there is good value for your dollar in the meals. The menu is divided into sandwich and rice platter form and allows you to scale up and down based on your budget and appetite.
With several locations scattered across the greater Tampa Bay area in Florida, Zeko’s Mediterranean Grill is a great alternative to fried or greasy fast-foods. Many of their locations are open late into the morning and with drive-through options for meals on the go. Meals are made fresh-to-order, so be prepared to wait while your meats are grilled to perfection.