Cer Te’s Off the Menu Leg of Lamb “Gyro” is the Perfect Pre-Thanksgiving Lunch

Tomorrow is quite possibly the biggest eating day of the year for most of us (well, biggest historically sanctioned eating day of the year).  And while some of you might starve yourselves, or “eat light” as it were, in the hours leading up to the big day I like to take a different approach.  It’s what I call “preparing for the onslaught”.  Your stomach can’t go from salad to gorgefest in a 24 hour period.  You’ve got to ease it in.  In past years I’ve recommended great Midtown turkey sandwiches, or hitting up an all you can eat buffet, but this year I’m going in a different direction.  Lamb.  And more specifically, an amazing off-the-menu lamb sandwich from Cer Te (on 55th btw. 5+6th) that is only available on Wednesdays.  Well, would you look at that!  Today is Wednesday…

Unlike Cer Te’s other amazing sandwich specials, this one is an “off-the-menu” kind of thing (or at least it has been for the past few weeks.)  Since the beginning of the month Cer Te has been offering a leg of lamb lunch special for $12.95 on Wednesdays.  As legend has it, a few weeks ago a Cer Te regular asked if they’d be willing to serve the leg of lamb in sandwich form.  Perhaps on pita?  And topped with tzatziki sauce?  And voila!  The $8.95, Wednesday only, Cer Te off-the-menu “gyro” was born.


Seeing as the meat is fall off the bone stewed lamb, it’s not quite the same as a typical gyro (where the meat is spit roasted) but who cares.  The thing tastes out of control good.  The wonderfully tender and flavorful lamb balances perfectly with the tangy homemade tzatziki sauce, while the pita bread is busy working diligently at keeping the whole mess together.  The lamb is really moist, and the sandwich is piled high- so you might have to resort to a knife and fork at some point… but it’s completely worth it.  In fact, it could be one of the best sandwiches they’ve ever offered (and that’s saying a lot considering how many good ones there have been.)

I would have thought they’d be offering their “Thanksgiving Dip” today, but it’s a moot issue anyway.  This new gyro sandwich is a more than capable pre-Thanksgiving replacement.  Oh… and don’t worry if you can’t make it there today.  The leg of lamb gyro will be available on Wednesdays through the entire winter.  It warms my belly just thinking about it.

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  • Okay Zach. You win. I’m going there for lunch like you predicted.

  • Whoa. Probably me too.

  • i’ll save the $4 and get me some chicken and rice from 6th & 53rd!

  • Thanks for the valuable feedback locondcoco!

  • yummmmm!!! my mouth is watering… and Im about to go to the gym, so thanks a lot!

  • Okay, just finished this thing. Zach is on the money with his description. Is this $9.75 gyro worth getting over the $5 gyro down the block from a cart?

    - It’s actual lamb, not compressed lamb-and-other meatloaf. Since it’s stewed, it has a stronger lamb taste and arguably more tender than the lamb-meatloaf. (but since it’s stewed, it’ also drippier).
    - Yogurt sauce beats Mayo-based sauce any day of the week.
    - It’s not nearly as salty as the saltbombs from the carts.
    - The more expensive gyro comes with more expensive packaging. This thing was perfectly wrapped and it was probably the first gyro I didn’t wear and didn’t need a knife and fork (who am I kidding, my fingers) to eat. The sandwich was loosely wrapped inside, and then tucked into a plastic takeout container. Environment be damned, but the sandwich held it’s integrity.

    In the end, if you like a lamb sandwich that tastes like lamb, get this thing from CerTe. If you like streetmeat, go with the cart. If you like both, spend $8 over at kwikmeal :)

  • Zach, please, for the love of god, stop using Guy Fierisms!

  • Next Wed. it is then.

  • I’m consuming mine right now, and I agree with most of Adamprato’s assessment. The lamb is definitely of high quality, and the yogurt sauce has a great flavor. However, it IS a little pricey for the portion – getting a soda put me well over the $10 mark.

    Would I order this item again? I’ll probably stick to the chicken/lamb over rice carts for my sheep fix.

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    I read this and headed out with Cer Te as my destination… but the misting rain and my lack of an umbrella steered me to Kwik Meal Cart across the street from my office. I gotta say, their lamb on a pita did not dissapoint. Real lamb, yogurt based sauce, nice spicy kick… The only problem is they’re a bit on the small side (even for $6). Thanks Zach for the pre-Thanksgiving lamb inspiration!

  • Is it just me or does Chris and Zach’s pics look like 2 different sandwiches?

  • @D – yeah, I guess they loaded up on the lettuce on mine (and skimped a bit on the lamb). The guys at Cer-te know Zach, so maybe they hooked him up in the protein department?

  • Odd. Mine had no lettuce. It had cucumbers and onions but no lettuce. Maybe he forgot?

    The thing wasn’t a fuckton of lamb (I’d guess 6oz), but it was a good sized sandwich and quality meat.

  • @chris – actually that’s completely fucked up. did you ask for the tzatziki on the side or something? doesn’t look the same at all…

    i don’t know if the guys making the sandwich know me there or not, but we’ve been though this before:


    If the sandwiches don’t start looking more like the one I got, I’m going to be pissed…

  • Most of the tzatziki ended up on the other side of the gyro (the non-photographed side). I hit them right at the lunch rush so they were making these guys 3 at a time, so maybe they just got sloppy? ::shrug::

  • They ran out of lamb today. Headed over to street meat on 53rd and 6th and the line was way too long. It was probably one of the worst days in midtown lunch history for me.

  • Zach, mine ended up exactly like yours. I would assume they were running low on lamb (Kyle says they ran out) and used the lettuce to extend it.

  • is it possible to call an order ahead? maybe it’ll come out better/more substantial. Can’t wait to try this either way!

  • Huh. I was so anxious for the lamb, I completely forgot they threw in a small cup of fruit salad in the bag. That was the first thing I took out of the bag, and there it sits uneaten. I’d rather have a small cup of that lamb on the side :)

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