Melissa Hennings

Yia Yia's House of Gyros

The original Mesquite location of this charming family-owned mini-chain is a tiny dining room full of proof of chef Vasili “Bill” Kaprantzas’ Greek immigrant roots. There’s a poster of the chef’s grandmother, quotations hand-scrawled on the walls and, of course, a bottle of Windex displayed with pride. The newer Rockwall location, in a shiny strip mall, manages the impressive trick of replicating the original dining room’s homey feel, complete with even more quotes, like “Let’s Make America Greek Again.” Nowhere else in Dallas feels like such a true portal to the Aegean Sea and its food.

Top pick: Grab an enormous overstuffed gyro wrap which comes with pretty darn good steak fries. Lamb souvlaki, pastitsio and calamari are superb, too.

The downside: Although the baklava is over-the-top sweet, that’s an easy flaw to forgive when Chef Bill stops by your table himself to ask, disarmingly, “How did I do?”

Fun fact: Yia Yia’s House of Gyros is a regular on Yelp lists of Texas’ best restaurants. At one point in time, Yelpers gave this spot the highest average rating of any place in Dallas, and it’s still in the state’s top 25.