The Reservoir has been a popular daytime spot since its opening in 2013. The Surry Hills cafe's simple yet charming interior boasts floor-to-ceiling windows, exposed brick walls and ascetic wooden tables, making it the perfect setting for latte sipping and street gazing. The cafe's classic breakfast and lunch menu has been serving up dishes with a Greek twist for a few years now, with avocado smash ($13) and an bacon egg roll ($9) sitting alongside beef moussaka ($17) and souvlaki ($20).
This month, however, the cafe has officially opened for dinner service. Going back to their roots, they're keeping their doors open into the night every day except Mondays with a killer Greek street food menu, which includes a list of gyros ($10-14), falafel plates ($18) and shawarma wraps ($18). For vegetarians, the veg gyro ($12) is one of the best, stuffed with char-grilled, smoky eggplant and zucchini. Even the mezze trio ($19) is superb, with each homemade dip — tzatziki, spicy feta and taramasalata — complementing the other. The pita bread served with most dishes is impossibly fluffy and tasty on its own.
The dinner menu's only — and necessary — departure from the authentic is the char-grilled chicken, served in quarter, half and whole portions ($15-24). Moroccan-spiced, the juicy chicken is served with thinly sliced pickles, Lebanese bread triangles and a ridiculously tasty garlic dip that patrons positively swoon over. Each aspect of the dish works with the other, creating one seriously satisfying meal. It's a must-try dish. Most of the meals are served with shoestring fries ($6-8), and the combination of the sweet paprika and rosemary salt makes them surprisingly memorable.
If you come here for one thing, and one thing only, the kefalotiri ($12) is in a class of its own; the pan-fried Greek cheese, served with a lemon wedge, is so simple yet unbelievably addictive. The cheese itself is reminiscent of a stronger haloumi, and could easily replace dessert. Fried to golden, the crusted, sharp cheese loses its heaviness with the addition of the fresh lemon.
Dinner is a casual affair, with counter service and free-flowing Greek drinks. No time to sit? Check out their takeaway menu, which happily includes the char-grilled chicken. You may have to say goodbye to that New Year diet — but it will be fully worth it.