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Psistaria Restaurant on Touhy

Psistaria Restaurant on Touhy
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  • Psistaria Restaurant on Touhy

    Post #1 - May 20th, 2008, 12:15 pm
    Post #1 - May 20th, 2008, 12:15 pm Post #1 - May 20th, 2008, 12:15 pm
    Opinions?

    Psistaria Greek Restaurant
    4711 West Touhy Avenue
    Lincolnwood, IL 60646
    847-676-9400
  • Post #2 - May 20th, 2008, 12:35 pm
    Post #2 - May 20th, 2008, 12:35 pm Post #2 - May 20th, 2008, 12:35 pm
    We like the place but some have commented it has recently slipped.
    What disease did cured ham actually have?
  • Post #3 - May 20th, 2008, 12:50 pm
    Post #3 - May 20th, 2008, 12:50 pm Post #3 - May 20th, 2008, 12:50 pm
    There are some opinions about Psistaria in this gyros thread.

    Best,
    Michael
  • Post #4 - May 20th, 2008, 1:27 pm
    Post #4 - May 20th, 2008, 1:27 pm Post #4 - May 20th, 2008, 1:27 pm
    Count me in the "gone downhill" group on Psistaria. The last few times we were there, we really thought the food was not as carefully prepared as a few years ago. We've stopped going, although it's pretty near home.
  • Post #5 - May 20th, 2008, 2:05 pm
    Post #5 - May 20th, 2008, 2:05 pm Post #5 - May 20th, 2008, 2:05 pm
    It's been a year since I was there but the food was just as good as ever then. I will have to stop by in the near future to see if their atomiko youvetsi is still as good as ever.
    I used to think the brain was the most important part of the body. Then I realized who was telling me that.
  • Post #6 - May 20th, 2008, 4:12 pm
    Post #6 - May 20th, 2008, 4:12 pm Post #6 - May 20th, 2008, 4:12 pm
    Despite being a former favorite, including a Greek Easter spent there with The Chow Poodle's family, we have stopped going. The food took a severe turn for the worse a couple of years ago and we now go elsewhere despite it being the closest Greek restaurant to our house.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #7 - May 20th, 2008, 10:36 pm
    Post #7 - May 20th, 2008, 10:36 pm Post #7 - May 20th, 2008, 10:36 pm
    I used to love the place, but haven't been there for 3-4 years, so I can't comment on any recent slides in quality.
    What if the Hokey Pokey really IS what it's all about?
  • Post #8 - May 20th, 2008, 10:56 pm
    Post #8 - May 20th, 2008, 10:56 pm Post #8 - May 20th, 2008, 10:56 pm
    Been a while for me too but I will say that I've always thought of it as a decent place that doesn't do anything quite as well as my favorite places in Greek Town. It's acceptable, given the much greater proximity to my house, but not really a destination.

    =R=
    I am not interested in how I would evaluate the Springbank in a blind tasting. Every spirit has its story, and I include it in my evaluation, just as I do with human beings. --Thad Vogler

    I'll be the tastiest pork cutlet bowl ever --Yuri Katsuki

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #9 - May 21st, 2008, 6:43 am
    Post #9 - May 21st, 2008, 6:43 am Post #9 - May 21st, 2008, 6:43 am
    I used to work across the street and it was always hit or miss, sometimes great, sometimes terrible.

    Psistaria
    4711 W. Touhy Ave.
    Lincolnwood
    (847) 676-9400
    http://www.psistaria.com
  • Post #10 - November 5th, 2009, 7:28 pm
    Post #10 - November 5th, 2009, 7:28 pm Post #10 - November 5th, 2009, 7:28 pm
    Had a long overdue lunch there today. It's under new ownership. They repainted inside to make the room brighter and got rid of the bandstand. The menu looks the same. They had a flier with several lunch specials from sandwiches (I had the lamb) to full meals, including fish and meat. Good food and quick service. Live Greek music on Saturday nights. Definitely will go back into my area lunch rotation. They're also participating in Restaurant.com
    "Sandwiches are wonderful. You don't need a spoon or a plate!"
    Paul Lynde
  • Post #11 - November 5th, 2009, 8:10 pm
    Post #11 - November 5th, 2009, 8:10 pm Post #11 - November 5th, 2009, 8:10 pm
    Thanks, Dave, for the update. I hope to check Psistaria out again soon.

    =R=
    I am not interested in how I would evaluate the Springbank in a blind tasting. Every spirit has its story, and I include it in my evaluation, just as I do with human beings. --Thad Vogler

    I'll be the tastiest pork cutlet bowl ever --Yuri Katsuki

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #12 - November 6th, 2009, 6:09 pm
    Post #12 - November 6th, 2009, 6:09 pm Post #12 - November 6th, 2009, 6:09 pm
    I work not too far from there and it has definately improved with new owners (according to my Greek co-worker). I will disagree with the fast service though. I have been there for lunch twice in the past 6 weeks and the food was great but the service was slow despite there being two waitstaff and maybe 10 tables.

    The food was good though. I had the Pork Souvlakia lunch special both times with the oven browned potatoes and the meat was nice and tender and a nice char grilled flavor. Both trips they also brought out a small bean salad for the table to share that was very good. The bread basket is overflowing with a very nice greek olive oil to go with it. We also had the saganaki which was nothing special but the zucchini and skortalia was very good. The zucchini was well cooked and had the right amount of crunch to the breading. The skortalia was full of garlicy goodness and there was not a trace left on the plate.
  • Post #13 - December 7th, 2009, 2:36 pm
    Post #13 - December 7th, 2009, 2:36 pm Post #13 - December 7th, 2009, 2:36 pm
    The oven-broiled chicken is something to try. Order ahead or you'll wait 25 minutes if you're taking it carry out. The chicken was crispy with a significant broiler char on the outside, but inside the meat was fantastically juicy and the white meat (which is always the test) was succulent and moist.

    Generally, i've been hitting Psistaria once/month as a solid late night carryout option when i work late. I find their lamb shank to be pricey for the portion given, but have been pleasantly surprised at the food, and will continue to make this a late night destination.
  • Post #14 - December 7th, 2009, 3:07 pm
    Post #14 - December 7th, 2009, 3:07 pm Post #14 - December 7th, 2009, 3:07 pm
    katierysz wrote:Any opinions?


    Sounds more like a skin condition than a restaurant :lol:
  • Post #15 - May 23rd, 2010, 11:37 am
    Post #15 - May 23rd, 2010, 11:37 am Post #15 - May 23rd, 2010, 11:37 am
    LTH,

    I've been to Psistaria a few times over the years, decent old school Greek with been there done that, do I really have to do it yet again vibe, main reason to go house-made gyros. Fast forward to a recently redecorated Psistaria, same menu, same staff, but the cosmetic changes seem to have had the same effect as a face-lift and tummy-tuck on a middle-age divorcee, turning Psistaria into, if not exactly a cougar, no longer a kerchief in the sleeve dowager.

    Lively energetic multigenerational crowd, George the waiter friendly, quick with accurate suggestions, tender char grilled octopus, lamb riblets, light crisp meltingly tender fried zuccinii paired with garlicky skordalia, good olive oil on the table, halved lemons aplenty.

    Amongst lovers of all things crispy, chewy, fatty, gnarly meaty there was a collective sigh of disappointment when Sanrotini took lamb scharas off the menu, Psistaria's Lamb Riblets (are you listening Evil Ronnie) are the same dish. Basic, elemental, sprinkle with salt and gnaw

    Psistaria Lamb Riblets

    Cell phone picture
    Image

    Enjoyable meal, kicker was when I suggested Psistaria my wife offered we had received a discount coupon in the mail that morning, deal sealed.

    Enjoy,
    Gary

    Psistaria Greek Restaurant
    4711 West Touhy Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60646
    847-676-9400
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #16 - May 23rd, 2010, 1:37 pm
    Post #16 - May 23rd, 2010, 1:37 pm Post #16 - May 23rd, 2010, 1:37 pm
    G Wiv wrote:Amongst lovers of all things crispy, chewy, fatty, gnarly meaty there was a collective sigh of disappointment when Sanrotini took lamb scharas off the menu, Psistaria's Lamb Riblets (are you listening Evil Ronnie) are the same dish. Basic, elemental, sprinkle with salt and gnaw

    GWiv,
    I hear you loud and clear. Funny thing is that we drove past Psistaria yesterday on the way to Fresh Farms and all I could remember about the place was Steve Z's less than favorable comments. Thanks for the update, but living so close to Greektown, I usually hit Greek Island for GWiv recommended Lamb Riblets when I'm in the mood for fatty, gristly lamb. (I always ask for well done, they're fantastic.)

    :twisted:
    "Bass Trombone is the Lead Trumpet of the Deep."
    Rick Hammett
  • Post #17 - May 24th, 2010, 10:57 am
    Post #17 - May 24th, 2010, 10:57 am Post #17 - May 24th, 2010, 10:57 am
    I've been meaning to re-review Psistaria for some time now. Over the past several months I have developed an addiction to this place. The fact that it remains open until 10pm made it a frequent stop for me on my home from late nights from the office.

    The owners, hosts, and staff are warm and gregarious people - especially George, who shows more natural exuberance over my arrival than most of my relatives do when I walk in the door.

    But the bottom line for me is food. The Athenian chicken is quite possibly my favorite chicken dish. Anywhere. Ever. Of any kind. I never thought a chicken offering that wasn't fried chicken could ever hold this high place in my life, but this is some absurd bird. The broiled offering's skin is delightfully light and crispy, packed with herbal flavor. Meanwhile the meat is absolutely succulent and juicy. The white meat (the chicken litmus test as far as I'm concerned) is abundantly juicy, too. It's not exagerration to say that there were periods over the past few months where I was eating the chicken three times/week.

    Another standout dish is the Gyros - homemade and expertly done. the slices are thick and hearty, with crispy exterior matched with a hearty and moist interior. Along with Nick's Drive In, this is the best gyros i've ever had. . .although i'd give Psistaria's version the nod over Nick's. The grind is coarser than your typical pre-fab gyros cone, which gives it character and heft. But the taste is what truly sets it apart. There is a spicy warmth to this meat, and it pleasantly burns and lingers on the palate. .and throat.

    Soups are homemade and fantastic. and I don't even like soup most of the time. They are all house-made and range from navy bean, beef and vegetable, fish, and chickpea to name a few. I have yet to have one that has been average (exception being the egg-lemon soup, which I just don't like at any restaurant).

    the braised lamb is extremely tender, and collapses with a gently push from your fork. The portion may not as be as large as other places, but the quality of the meat and the flavor is what seals the deal here.

    My twin brother came into town and we headed here straight from the airport as it was still open and he'd heard me rave about it. He said the gyros was his second favorite (his favorite being aforementioned Nick's) and that the Athenian Chicken was the best chicken he'd ever had. We ordered some to-go the next night for a snack. Notably, my other brother and my parents have become addicted to this place as well.

    I'm kind of embarassed I drove by it for all these years and never ventured in.
  • Post #18 - May 24th, 2010, 11:45 am
    Post #18 - May 24th, 2010, 11:45 am Post #18 - May 24th, 2010, 11:45 am
    stevez wrote:Despite being a former favorite, including a Greek Easter spent there with The Chow Poodle's family, we have stopped going. The food took a severe turn for the worse a couple of years ago and we now go elsewhere despite it being the closest Greek restaurant to our house.



    Judging by these recent posts, things have taken a turn for the better since 2006 when I last ate there (the quote above was from 2008). I'll have to get back in there and give it another try.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #19 - December 6th, 2010, 5:55 pm
    Post #19 - December 6th, 2010, 5:55 pm Post #19 - December 6th, 2010, 5:55 pm
    I also recommend that you give it a another try. I went today for lunch (damn you, Groupon, for not posting yesterday!) and it was very nice. For $7.95, I ordered the combination plate: homemade gyros, lots of rice, half a boiled potato, one pretty sizable dolmade (about twice as big as Pita Inn), and a spinach pastry thing. Lunches also come with a cup of soup and bread.

    The soup (avgolemono) was not as hot as I like it; it was hot enough to eat when it arrived, and no more. I came shortly after opening, so it should have been piping hot. But the lemon was not overpowering and there was a nice balance of rice and liquid, perfect for dipping.
    I don't know what Greek places do, but they always have the best rice, although I could have used a little less. The spinach pastry was decent, and the gyros was fantastic. It looked like the tzatziki sauce was homemade; it was much chunkier than I normally see in gyros joints. The hot dolmade rivaled the gyros for my favorite thing on the plate. Instead of being doused in lemon juice, it was topped with a thick, creamy lemon sauce (that looked suspiciously like the soup sans rice, but no matter) and stuffed with flavorful beef and lamb. After the cold vegetarian ones at Pita Inn, this was a nice change. All in all, I was stuffed to the brim and quite pleased. I also like the fact that the wine list was out at 11am, and if I wasn't so sleepy already, I would have indulged.

    I ended up buying the Groupon anyway when I got back...I know I'll be returning, possibly for dinner...they have a lot of things with scallops and some pretty nifty-sounding desserts.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love
    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach
    In the world of apples, Pink Lady runs the whorehouse. ~ James Napoli

    Late-Nite Eats Database
  • Post #20 - December 6th, 2010, 9:21 pm
    Post #20 - December 6th, 2010, 9:21 pm Post #20 - December 6th, 2010, 9:21 pm
    Does Psistaria have a reasonable wine list? Wine by the glass? Byob?
  • Post #21 - December 7th, 2010, 9:50 am
    Post #21 - December 7th, 2010, 9:50 am Post #21 - December 7th, 2010, 9:50 am
    I don't think it's BYOB, but they have about 20 wines, many of them Greek, with a nice little colored-dot legend that helps determine which is dry, fruity, etc. I believe many are by the glass.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love
    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach
    In the world of apples, Pink Lady runs the whorehouse. ~ James Napoli

    Late-Nite Eats Database
  • Post #22 - June 2nd, 2011, 11:50 am
    Post #22 - June 2nd, 2011, 11:50 am Post #22 - June 2nd, 2011, 11:50 am
    I returned last night to use up another Groupon. I was going to have the combination plate, but then I saw stingray on the menu. I never had stingray before; turns out it's fascinating. It came away in large strands, like spaghetti squash of the sea. The bones were in a large knobby sheet, like a bead curtain, and lo, there was more meat underneath! It was a little underdone on the bottom, and the seasoning was tasty, though a tad salty. But I'd try this again, maybe someplace else to see what other preparations are like. It came with a side of garlic mashed potatoes, or more accurately, mashed garlic with garlic and a hint of potatoes. Very tasty and addictive, and you can all rest easy because I personally am keeping vampires away from the entire north shore.

    I then had a conundrum. I somehow forgot about the pleasures of saganaki until I saw everybody else ordering it, and by then I had already ordered my 'ray. I figured I could order it for dessert, but after the entrée I was a bit too stuffed for cheese and bread. However, I was not too stuffed for galaktoboureko. It was really light and fluffy, if custard can be fluffy, and it was nicely soaked in honey syrup (though I would have preferred a thicker syrup, and more of it). Saganaki will have to wait. :)
    Last edited by Pie Lady on June 2nd, 2011, 4:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love
    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach
    In the world of apples, Pink Lady runs the whorehouse. ~ James Napoli

    Late-Nite Eats Database
  • Post #23 - June 2nd, 2011, 4:33 pm
    Post #23 - June 2nd, 2011, 4:33 pm Post #23 - June 2nd, 2011, 4:33 pm
    Pie Lady wrote: I was not too stuffed for galaktoboureko. It was really light and fluffy, if cheese can be fluffy, and it was nicely soaked in honey syrup (though I would have preferred a thicker syrup, and more of it). Saganaki will have to wait. :)


    Are you saying there was cheese in your galaktoboureko? As far as I know, it is a type of pudding made with farina.
    Ms. Ingie
    Life is too short, why skip dessert?
  • Post #24 - June 2nd, 2011, 4:37 pm
    Post #24 - June 2nd, 2011, 4:37 pm Post #24 - June 2nd, 2011, 4:37 pm
    Ms. Ingie wrote:
    Pie Lady wrote: I was not too stuffed for galaktoboureko. It was really light and fluffy, if cheese can be fluffy, and it was nicely soaked in honey syrup (though I would have preferred a thicker syrup, and more of it). Saganaki will have to wait. :)


    Are you saying there was cheese in your galaktoboureko? As far as I know, it is a type of pudding made with farina.


    Whoops! Shoulda said custard. Fixed! :)
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love
    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach
    In the world of apples, Pink Lady runs the whorehouse. ~ James Napoli

    Late-Nite Eats Database
  • Post #25 - August 10th, 2011, 1:02 pm
    Post #25 - August 10th, 2011, 1:02 pm Post #25 - August 10th, 2011, 1:02 pm
    As yet another holder of a Groupon, I made my first visit here last night.

    I agree that the gyros is some of the best in the area (the Gyros plate runs $11.95).
    There was a nice proportion of crispy edges, the meat was not oversalted, and there was no gristle. Best of all, the gyros was not dry.

    I enjoyed the simple egg-lemon (avgolemono) soup, which may be too bland for most people. It's just soup with white rice. A few shakes of pepper and salt might make it more pleasing to others.

    My friend had the fried zucchini, which is lightly breaded. It was well prepared, but cooled quickly in the too-cold restaurant. (Can't fault them too much for that, since the weather turned sharply cooler this week.) The skorthalia packed a wallop of raw garlic, to the point that it left my mouth tingling. I'm sure it's good for what ails you. The Greek salad was a textbook example of why to order dressing on the side; the salad had a deep pool of vinaigrette at the bottom.

    Service was attentive to the point of being bizarre. The waiter repeatedly stopped by to ask if we were done, even though the restaurant was only a third full. I think he was just trying to be helpful in getting our plates out of the way, but eventually we felt uncomfortable.

    Greek Islands is still my standard bearer, but this place is a decent choice if you are in the area.
  • Post #26 - May 27th, 2012, 2:53 pm
    Post #26 - May 27th, 2012, 2:53 pm Post #26 - May 27th, 2012, 2:53 pm
    About 6 weeks ago, a couple of Greek Islands veterans (including Tom, a former manager there) took over Psistaria. As a result, their food is, by far, the best it's been in a long time, if not ever. It's very near my office and I've had 4 or 5 lunches there over the past couple of weeks. Some of the dishes have been downright spectacular, including tender-meaty, grilled octopus and little spanakopita triangles that could very well be the best I've ever had. Many other items I've tried there since the turnover, including house-made gyros, whole-roasted striped bass, skordalia, taramosalata, chicken riganati, arni fornou and several soups, were excellent renditions that will go immediately into my regular ordering rotation. It's a large menu and there's a lot to explore.

    I've eaten in and carried out and yes, the dine-in food was superior. But the carry-out versions were still completely laudable. Last week I placed a large order for my office and the team at Psistaria could not have been more efficient, thorough or helpful in getting the order together. When I arrived to pick it up, they went through each bag and box, making sure that nothing had been left out. Our order was packed extremely well -- it all stayed hot, nothing spilled, nothing leaked. Not only was the packaging great but they also made sure I had utensils, napkins, lemon wedges, etc. They also helped me carry everything out to the car.

    If you haven't been to Psistaria in the past 6 weeks or so, it's pretty much like you've never been there. It's only been a few weeks and I've only had a handful of meals there, but what I've experienced so far has been extremely encouraging.

    =R=
    I am not interested in how I would evaluate the Springbank in a blind tasting. Every spirit has its story, and I include it in my evaluation, just as I do with human beings. --Thad Vogler

    I'll be the tastiest pork cutlet bowl ever --Yuri Katsuki

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #27 - May 27th, 2012, 3:18 pm
    Post #27 - May 27th, 2012, 3:18 pm Post #27 - May 27th, 2012, 3:18 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:About 6 weeks ago, a couple of Greek Islands veterans (including Tom, a former manager there) took over Psistaria. As a result, their food is, by far, the best it's been in a long time, if not ever. It's very near my office and I've had 4 or 5 lunches there over the past couple of weeks. Some of the dishes have been downright spectacular, including tender-meaty, grilled octopus and little spanakopita triangles that could very well be the best I've ever had. Many other items I've tried there since the turnover, including house-made gyros, whole-roasted striped bass, skordalia, taramosalata, chicken riganati, arni fornou and several soups, were excellent renditions that will go immediately into my regular ordering rotation. It's a large menu and there's a lot to explore.

    I've eaten in and carried out and yes, the dine-in food was superior. But the carry-out versions were still completely laudable. Last week I placed a large order for my office and the team at Psistaria could not have been more efficient, thorough or helpful in getting the order together. When I arrived to pick it up, they went through each bag and box, making sure that nothing had been left out. Our order was packed extremely well -- it all stayed hot, nothing spilled, nothing leaked. Not only was the packaging great but they also made sure I had utensils, napkins, lemon wedges, etc. They also helped me carry everything out to the car.

    If you haven't been to Psistaria in the past 6 weeks or so, it's pretty much like you've never been there. It's only been a few weeks and I've only had a handful of meals there, but what I've experienced so far has been extremely encouraging.

    =R=


    Thanks for the update Ronnie. Psistaria used to be my favorite back in the day when it was on Lincoln Avenue. I often drive by in the summer on my way home from the beach. I'll definately have to stop now and have dinner.
    Ms. Ingie
    Life is too short, why skip dessert?
  • Post #28 - May 27th, 2012, 4:59 pm
    Post #28 - May 27th, 2012, 4:59 pm Post #28 - May 27th, 2012, 4:59 pm
    I agree, Ronnie- I was there last weekend, and the food was about the best it's ever been. In fact the times I've been there in the last year or so (probably three times) have been better than the times I've been there in the previous 10 years. Everything was well prepared, good flavor, good service. Did they do a little remodeling recently, too? Seems like the walls were white the last time I was there about 4 months ago, and now they're yellow.
  • Post #29 - May 27th, 2012, 7:06 pm
    Post #29 - May 27th, 2012, 7:06 pm Post #29 - May 27th, 2012, 7:06 pm
    Hot diggity, that's practically across the street from my work. Looks like I'll be there again soon. Grilled octopus, eh? I wonder if that's on the lunch menu.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love
    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach
    In the world of apples, Pink Lady runs the whorehouse. ~ James Napoli

    Late-Nite Eats Database
  • Post #30 - May 28th, 2012, 8:47 am
    Post #30 - May 28th, 2012, 8:47 am Post #30 - May 28th, 2012, 8:47 am
    The Chow Poodle and I have been there a couple of times recently as well. I've go to echo what Ronnie said. We're very happy to once again have Psisteria in our rotation, since it's so close to the house.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven

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