In 2015, Astoria resident, Peter Katsiaris conceived SVL Souvlaki Bar to address the lack of a high-quality and authentic Greek yeero in the market. The yeero is the iconic Greek stacked-meat pita sandwich, now an ever-present symbol of Greek cuisine and culture internationally.
The concept behind SVL Souvlaki Bar was created around the ‘yeero’ (a term from the phonetic spelling of the word “gyro”) as a signature dish. Years were spent creating this concept before we opened the “Modern Fast-Casual” Greek restaurant in November of 2015 located in the vast multi-cultural neighborhood of Astoria. Today, SVL Souvlaki Bar is thriving with additional expansion plans underway.
Peter Katsiaris, a self-made restaurateur and founder has worked in the restaurant industry from a young age. Born in Astoria, Katsiaris has spent many summers of his life in Greece—a formative experience that fostered his affinity for Greek cuisine and his desire to bring people together over a good meal. Katsiaris planned this Greek modern fast-casual concept in his free time so that today, his realized dream caters to the nostalgic looking for a piece of the motherland as well as the adventure-seeker in search of culinary surprise. Driven by his sense of wanderlust, Katsiaris takes annual trips back to Grece to explore his roots and the food culture that inspired SVL Souvlaki Bar.
“I love hospitality, and I appreciate the chance to share my story with you. I started SVL Souvlaki Bar so that everyone could taste the flavors of Greece in a modern, energetic atmosphere. I wanted to source the best possible ingredients and, staying solely in the Greek flavor profile, cook the best possible food I could. For me, this has been a journey of discovery, friendship, and flavor. I hope you enjoy.” – Peter Katsiaris, founder