Best at the Mall May Be Best of Crete

best of crete outside

Susan says…

Misty and I always like a side of shopping with our lunch whenever we can come up with a good excuse.  On this day, I had something to return and Misty needed to drop off a pair of shoes for repair.  So we headed toward Charleston Town Center for our lunch hour.

If you have never tried Best of Crete at the food court, you definitely need to.

Compared to  the other options at the Food Court, only Chick-Fil-A occasionally tempts me away from Best of Crete and their Greek treasures. 

I selected a varitable smorgasborg of Greek items (with a soda) for around 8!  I enjoyed a chicken gyro, spanikopita and baklava. 

The gyro was crammed full of chicken.  I couldn’t help but compare the chicken to Sinbad’s, and Sinbad comes out on top.  The chicken in my Best of Crete gyro was slightly overcooked and somewhat underseasoned (for my taste)…but still good and plentiful.  I couldn’t even finish all my food, there was so much.  I decided I could easily be satisified with only a gyro on a future visit.   

best of crete susan meal

But then I would miss out on the lovely concoction of phyllo, spinach and feta that is spanikopita.  So light and flaky, this little side item really hit the spot. 

I really, really wanted a bite of baklava to top of my meal and I got exactly that.  By cutting my diamond-shape piece of phyllo, honey and nuts into four pieces, each person in my party enjoyed one single, delicious bite.  Not too sweet, it is a wonderful treat.

If you are thinking that I am a fan of phyllo, then you must have your thinking cap on.  Phyllo is one of those magical food items that can make just about anything you put inside it or layer betwixt it, absolutely fabulous.  Sort of like what breading and deep-frying can do to other ingredients.  Do I like cooked, slimy, limpy spinach?  No!  It gives me  flashbacks of elementary school lunches when a sloppy spoonful was slapped on those fantastic compartmentalized lunch trays by an older lady wearing a hairnet and some kids even squirted vinegar on it.  Eeeeeewwwww!!!!  But put spinach inside phyllo (and add cheese!) and I love it. 

An aside:  what about those lunch trays?  Why can’t grown-ups use them?  Sometimes I don’t want one item seeping into another.  Now if it’s all Mexican food, that’s fine and dandy.  But do I want green bean juice migrating over to and subsequently sogging the bun on my sammie?  Nope.  That’s another great thing about Best of Crete: divided plates.

best of crete spanikopita

The staff were warm and friendly.  Choices were plentiful.  Prices, reasonable.

I have dined at Best of Crete many times, but I usually order the marinated chicken that Misty ate today.  It is always Capital T Tender and nicely seasoned.  Green beans and salad help round out a fairly guilt-free meal.  This is a go-to option if you are on a low-carb diet.  (Geez Susan, watch Food Network much?)  Today, in honor of the official forking, I thought I’d try something else for a change. 

Best of Crete is a solid THREE FORK establishment.  If you have been reluctant to try it in the past, go there immediately and order the marinated chicken and one of each of the pastries.   They only have about a dozen different things to please your sweet tooth.

 Oh, and just so you know, the shoe repair place is apparantly closed in the Mall. 

 Misty says…

I’ve eaten at the Charleston Town Center Food Court more than my fair share of times.  In fact, counting all my shopping trips and lunches (The food court is a very popular place when you work in downtown Charleston for lunch-it’s quick, it’s easy, it has a lot of choices, and shopping always makes you feel better if you are having a rough morning at work!)…Anyway, I bet I have eaten at the Town Center Food Court more than any other place in my life.  Now, that I think about that…that’s sad…but true.

I say all of this because out of all the times I’ve dined at the Mall; I’ve never purchased or tried anything from the Best of Crete.  I’m not sure why…I’ve often walked by and thought the food looked good.  The people who go there seem to like it.  So, when the forking was suggested, I was game.

After standing there and looking at the items for about 5 minutes (sometimes I am very indecisive- especially when it comes to food), I decided to order the ¼ size of the Marinated Chicken Dinner for $5.99.  For my sides, I selected the green beans and rice pilaf.

They quickly started piling the items on my plate.  1st they put a big piece of chicken that consisted of a breast and a wing.   Then, they put 2 big spoonfuls of both the rice and green beans on my plate.  The server asked if I wanted some of the chicken broth over the rice…I said, “Sure.”  Most people who know me know that I “don’t like to choke anything down dry.”  

crete chick dinner

As I was walking back to the group table, I was thinking…Man, that’s a lot of food for $5.99.

The skin was still on the chicken, so I removed it in a lame attempt to lower the calories.  The chicken was very moist and juicy.  Not dry at all. I did take one small bite of the skin- for the sake of the blog and it was crispy…not spicy…just very savory.

The rice was very tasty and not clumpy.  I hate clumpy rice.  This was loose and fluffy.  The broth gave it a more chicken-y taste.  But I think it would have been delicious without it.

The green beans had tomatoes in them. ..very similar to the scrumptious ones at Aladdin’s.  But maybe not quite as flavorful.  These were more like country cookin’ green beans with a Mediterranean flare.

Best of Crete was a solid THREE FORKS.  The service was great for the Mall…they were friendly, answered my questions politely and quickly served and rang up my food.

This lunch was very filling and delicious.  I should have tried it earlier.  And if you haven’t tried it, I recommend that you do.  It would give you more options in the dwindling restaurant selection at the Mall.

PS…  I had a bit of food envy right after I ordered…next time I will try the Grecian salad instead of the green beans.  Not that the green beans were bad, but the salad looked very yummy- with tons of feta cheese on it. 

PSS…they also have a few daily specials for $6.99 I would like to try…Like Wednesday’s Meat Loaf Dinner and Friday’s Baked Fish Dinner.

(Click on thumbnails to view the menu at full size)

Best of Crete crete menu 2crete menu
Charleston Town Center
Chalreston, WV 25389
304-343-3292 phone
304-344-3242 fax
Best of Crete on Urbanspoon

6 responses to “Best at the Mall May Be Best of Crete

  1. SagaciousHillbilly

    Best of Crete is the only food joint I go to at the mall.
    Great food at a family run business.

  2. The best place in the mall.
    Real food compared to the pre-packaged swill the other fast food places serve.

  3. I love their fresh hummus and pitas. And their Greek salad dressing is really good too. I stopped there a few days ago just for a drink (noticed they sell MY fave-Diet Pepsi) and paid $1.50 for a large. I first looked at Sbarro’s, but took my (big whopping) business to the local folks, and, of course, it was cheaper.

  4. When I worked in Charleston that place was a favorite of mine. I particularly liked the meatloaf dinner on Wednesdays.
    But I do disagree with Misty on one point. She said that the mall “…has a lot of choices…” My response to that would be “not as many as it used to.”

  5. Phil I. Stein

    I too highly endorse Best of Crete. I wish mike woul have kept the Beech Ave. place open because it was much more convenient than dealing with the mall but I eat there whenever I am forced to visit the mall.

  6. I agree with SagaciousHillbilly. It is the only place that I eat when I’m at the TCM.

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