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Once again, I had the pleasure of trying a family-owned restaurant as I really am trying to support as many small establishments as I can. This week, Lori and I went to Market Grille Cafe located at 7070 N. Durango Drive in Centennial Hills. They have a second location in Summerlin at 7175 W. Lake Mead Blvd.

I like to use the phrase “Mom-and-Pop places” a lot. But when I talk about Market Grille Cafe, it truly is a Mom-and-Pop place. The owner Joe Pierro and his wife Rhonda started Market Grille in 2006. Joe’s family is Italian while Rhonda’s is Greek and that’s how the restaurant got to specialize in Mediterranean Greek and Italian dishes. It’s a true love affair with food and family. Now their son Joey is the executive chef and sees to the day-to-day operations of both locations.

I have to admit when it comes to Greek cuisine, I am not that well versed and actually texted my good friend Chris Andrews, who is the sportsbook director at South Point. Chris happens to be Greek and asked him if I should try a certain appetizer that they had on the menu. I asked him about a dish called Saganaki. His reply was “Oh Yes, Absolutely!”

If you never had it, Skaganaki is a Greek imported pasteurized cheese simmered with lemon and Brandy on a flaming skillet and served with warm Pita bread. This appetizer was absolutely amazing. I highly recommend you start your meal with it and it’s a great dish to share.

The menu is extensive but, on this trip, I wanted to try something from the Greek items. Our waitress Linda, who was a sweetheart, suggested one of their signature dishes — the Pomegranate Chicken. This dish is just what it sounds like as they have slices of marinated chicken in Pomegranate juices and herbs and is served with a Pomegranate glaze and walnuts. The dish is on the sweet side but was very good.

Lori went with the Chicken & Vegetable Skewers with Rice and enjoyed it very much. Next time we go I’ll try some of the Italian dishes.

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Save room for dessert as you can’t go to a Greek restaurant and not get Baklava for dessert. They do have a signature dessert that is called Aphrodite’s Cheesecake. It’s a cheesecake with a Baklava crust. That’s on my list for my next visit.

The staff was very attentive and extremely friendly. Our waitress Linda made our visit even more enjoyable. When I said it was a family owned and run business, I truly meant it as the mother was the hostess who greeted us and took us to our table. I give Market Grille Cafe a rating of 3.75 Forks.

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