Friday, January 06 2012 16:23

Kyro: A Gayborhood Must for Pizza and Middle Eastern

By  John Cullen with Marty Shayt

Kyro is located in the triangular space at the corner of Read & Cathedral streets, a quick, walk from the Washington Monument in Mt Vernon and neighborhood LGBT institutions including Club Hippo, Grand Central Station, the Drinkery, and Leon's.

 

The restaurant name alludes to both the current Middle Eastern influenced menu and its prior incarnation as an Egyptian pizzeria (Kyro is a creative spelling for the Egyptian city of Cairo). Walls of oversized windows provide views of the historic neighborhood and people walking by. Inside, Kyro has a casual feel with a few booths and two dozen tables; the large, interesting cartoon mural in the main dining space is eye catching and full of Kyro facts and trivia. Kyro doesn’t have a liquor license but has no surcharge for “BYOB” (Spirits of Mt. Vernon is just a block away).

Kyro’s large menu is diverse and reasonably priced with soups, salads, pasta, sandwiches, and Middle Eastern entrees as well as pizza. Appetizers ($5-8) include tasty versions of yellow lentil soup (quite yummy!), hummus, baba ganoush, grape leaves, and falafel (a favorite of our Gay Life editor). A half dozen entrée salads (most $10) include the Alexandria (with grilled lamb), a roasted eggplant salad, and Neptune’s Delight (with sautéed shrimp in a lemon garlic sauce). Twenty-plus sandwiches (most $9) come on pita bread with choice of fries or side salad. A half dozen entrees include chicken or lamb schwarma ($11) and chicken, lamb or kofta kabobs ($15). Two dozen different pizza combinations come in three sizes with somewhat uniform pricing (10-inch for $10, 12-inch for $13, and 14-inch for $16-18).

We most recently dined at Kyro with a large group of friends who ended up trying a handful of different pizzas. Kyro’s menu lists over 30 different pizza combinations including a handful of some quite creative options (e.g., the “Ball Park” with hotdogs and onions drizzled with ketchup and mustard on top of a cheese pizza). Marty ordered the kaboria (roasted red peppers, spinach, crab, and garlic) while John opted for the “Natural Pita” sandwich (grilled eggplant, artichoke, red pepper, scallions, sprinkled with feta cheese with tahini sauce on the side). Our friends tried different pizzas: “Four Seasons” (spinach, artichoke, broccoli, mushrooms with mozzarella), “koko” (strips of chicken, spinach, red onions, garlic with mozzarella), “Sharmel-Shek” (smoked salmon and onions with mozzarella), “Anima” (roasted eggplant, red peppers, mushrooms, pesto with feta).

John enjoyed his “Natural Pita” sandwich and found it tasty and satisfying. Consensus among the pizza eaters was that they really enjoyed everything; the medium thick crusts were chewy and delicious, and toppings were generous. Marty felt that the toppings weren’t “runny” and that Kyro provided the best pizza he had downtown in a while (a sentiment echoed by several of our friends). Between the friendly, attentive service, diverse menu with options for most people, and good food at reasonable prices, Kyro is a place to keep in mind when you’re in Mt. Vernon!


Kyro
900 Cathedral St. (Mt. Vernon)
410.545.5112 • KyroPizza.com
Open 7 days, 11am-10pm
No liquor (no BYOB charge) • Vegetarian options

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