Greek Street Food Restaurant Opens in Tkalča

Total Croatia News

A new must-visit place for Zagreb foodies.

“I am overwhelmed, we didn’t expect this much interest. People have been passing by and peeking in for 20 days now, ever since we started renovating the space, which was very interesting to see. I have gotten calls from numerous people without even trying to make the opening of the restaurant an official event, so I am really pleasantly surprised by all the attention,” one of the owners, Krsitian Šimunović said in an interview for on October 6, 2017.

Lunchtime rush-hour is over, but the restaurant at Tkalčićeva 30 is still filled with people. The subtly Greek interior design was a location where Gyroses and salads were being prepared, and the staff, together with the owners, were getting used to hungry people waiting in line to try the latest snack options in Tkalča.

El Greco, Facebook

“I am half Greek, half Croat from Dubrovnik. I have spent two-thirds of my life living in Greece and I came back to Croatia three years ago. I wanted to make a connection between my two homelands, so I have given a lot of thought to this project, which has now finally come true. I noticed that Zagreb was missing a place like El Greco, I know that there used to be a Greek restaurant here, but it didn’t last long. I did construction work in Greece, but I recognised the potential of the restaurant industry, so I decided to find people willing to invest their time, money and knowledge into this project. I found Greek partners and then we started looking for the location. We found Tkalča and a form of cooperation which suited us and the owner of the space. Our long-term goal is to open six restaurants in Croatia – two more in Zagreb and one in each bigger city. The first step is always the hardest, but, seeing that the interest of passers-by alone was huge even before we opened, the initial question ‘Is this going to work?’ turned into ‘Where are we going to open our next restaurant?’,” Kristian said.

El Greco offers fast street style food, and the dishes haven’t been adapted to the Croatian market, but all the tastes are authentic. With the exception of Twist Potatoes, which is not an authentic Greek product, but the authors liked the idea of it, everything is traditionally Greek. The offer is not big, and it is focused on several meat options, including chicken and pork Gyros in sandwiches and on plates. There are currently four types of salad, but more types will be added in the winter. As far as ingredients are concerned, seasonal vegetables are Croatian, while other ingredients come from Greece – Feta cheese, olives and olive oil.

“Our quality is high, even for Greek standards. I think Gyros is the only thing from the menu that could have Croatian competition because it is exotic, so we decided to put focus on that type of meat. We will add desserts in the winter and we are planning to maintain this model of business, offering a limited menu. I think we stand out in Tkalča, even though there are several world cuisine options. I think we are the only ones with offering ‘self-service street food’, which means you can eat here, order takeout, or eat on the go. I think this concept makes us stand out from the competition.

El Greco, Facebook

The most important thing is that we plan to focus on Zagreb citizens more than tourists, so we intend to put focus on the quality. Tourists might visit us once, but people who live here and who will return are much more important. For example, in order to find a perfect product, I flew from Zagreb to Athens to try a chicken sandwich and a pork sandwich. The rest is up to us, we will work on having a top quality service and we will try to show the famous Greek hospitality to our guests. I think that the quality and the service are the most important things in any business, especially when managing a restaurant. I lived in Thessaloniki for 20 years and I think that Zagreb needs a slightly better service industry, more smiles and warmth from the staff, so that’s what I’m trying to instil into my staff. Someone told me that I should open a restaurant in Dubrovnik, but I didn’t want to do it because I think that restaurant offering food all year round have more quality,” Kristian concluded.

When it comes to interior design, the owners wanted to bring Greece to Zagreb, but not in a tacky expected manner. There are no Greek pillars and the atmosphere is casual and urban. Tables and chairs are Greek, like the ones you can find in any Greek restaurant, as well as the colours (white, yellow and blue) and tiles.

Foodies, you know what to do – head over to Tkalčićeva 30 and taste Greece in the heart of Zagreb.

Like El Greco on Facebook.

Translated from



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