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Alexander’s Grill: More than just a dining experience

Justin Pellino | Friday, September 24, 2010

Since May 2009, little known Alexander’s Grill has been winning over the hearts and stomachs of Notre Dame students and the South Bend community through their delicious food and commitment to making eating out a personal experience.


The restaurant, located in the same strip mall as Studebagels and Between the Buns, places an emphasis on making patrons feel like family. This is primarily due to the larger-than-life personalities of its co-owners, Ari Lambridis and Maria Stergiotis, and a staff who like to refer to their customers by name.


A Greek immigrant with the accent to match, Lambridis draws upon his heritage and Stergiotis’ family recipes to offer traditional Greek fare in a friendly, comfortable environment. What the place lacks in décor it makes up for with its tasty food and personable employees.


When I was there, I sampled the house lemon-rice soup, strawberry crepe and the famous Greek platter: a plate of gyros, spanakopita (a spinach and cheese filled phyllo dough) and myzithropitakia (a cheese filled pastry) garnished with cucumbers, tomato and feta cheese. While the soup was a little bland for my liking, the crepe and gyros were excellent and really stood out for their freshness.


The thing that really struck me about the restaurant, however, was the way Alexander’s goes out of its way to cater to the college community. All patrons with a Notre Dame ID receive a 15 percent discount. Every Wednesday the restaurant offers a student special: Five dollars buys a gyro, fries and a soda or beer.


While Lambridis says the restaurant has struggled a bit since the opening of the Eddy Street Commons, Alexander’s is committed to drawing in customers by opening early for breakfast (6:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday), staying open late (4:30 a.m. Friday and Saturday) and always promising good food at low prices.


In the coming weeks the restaurant will begin offering a delivery service for the Notre Dame campus, which is perfect for when you’re looking for something a little different than your traditional pizza or sub sandwich.


But to really get the full experience you need to dine in. Grab a group of friends and head over to Alexander’s Grill. Eat some good food. Relax. Strike up a conversation with Ari. Surf the web on the free Wi-Fi or catch a game on one of the many flat screen TVs on the walls. Make yourself at home.