The Olympic Flame restaurant on the north side of the East Village offers both Greek and American dishes. It was one of the first new restaurants to stake a claim along Grand Avenue way back in 1988 and is now part of a series of quality restaurants and businesses that are expanding along Grand Avenue as the East Village continues to grow.
Lunch selections at Olympic Flame are straightforward and reasonably priced. You can order either Greek-style cuisine or typical American-style food such as hamburgers. The prices offered for the menu items make it clear that the Olympic Flame is working to offer reasonably priced meals. I don’t get the impression that it wants to go head to head with Zombie Burger with its higher prices and fancy theme or the sushi bar next door. At the same time, it is fun to try some ethnic-style food without breaking the bank. I have not tried the dinner menu but from the listing I suspect that the dishes are substantially more complex. The prices listed in the menu are still very reasonable.
I tried both the Greek salad ($3.65 and $6.55) and the gyro ($5.55). The gyro was fairly typical without any unique qualities or unusual sauce. At these price points you are getting a standard city deli-style gyro along the same lines as what Mr. Filet offers on the other side of the river.
The salad that I tried was also an equally competent but standard Greek salad. Like the gyro, there wasn’t anything about it that made it especially unique. The salad lacked the super-large slices of feta cheese and giant olives that some Greek restaurants add.
For dessert, I tried the Baklava. It seemed to be a bit hard to cut. It was too large to pop the whole thing into my mouth, and the sticky baklava sugar sauce kept me from picking it up with my fingers. But once I chopped it into smaller pieces it was very tasty.
Note that the restaurant does not have an airlock to keep cold air from blowing in during he winter.
Lunch Monday 10:30-2:30,
Lunch and Dinner Tuesday-Saturday, 10:30am-9:00pm
514 E. Grand Ave.
Des Moines, Iowa 50309