By LOIS KINDLE
Lots of folks in South Shore have been enjoying Khalid Abouelhouda’s Mediterranean food for the past seven years.
The Ruskin-based restauranteur is the owner of Pita Kabob, and he’s known for authentic dishes based on recipes from countries like Greece, Turkey, Egypt and Lebanon.
On May 1, he and a business partner, Malik Laroufe, of Riverview, opened The Rosemary Grill at 10660 New East Bay Road, Gibsonton. Their eatery features an array of bar food and many of the same Mediterranean-style dishes served at Pita Kabob.
The menu includes Caesar and Greek salads with pita and starters, like wings, crispy calamari, butterfly shrimp, mozzarella sticks, chicken tenders and gizzards. Diners can choose from a selection of sandwiches, including assorted gyros, burgers, panini and subs, plus gyro, shrimp or fish platters.
There are kids meals for children 12 and younger. A grilled cheese sandwich, hot dog or chicken tenders served with homemade potato chips and a beverage goes for $5.99. And there are nine different combo meals to choose from.
Onion rings, Basmati herb rice, homemade potato chips, and rosemary, cheese or chili fries are available as sides, as are cheesecake and chocolate cake for dessert.
The restaurant offers daily and weekly specials, and all menu items are available for takeout or delivery through Grub Hub. Folks can order ahead online for pickup or delivery at www.therosemarygrill.com. Catering is also available.
Currently, limited indoor dining is permitted per state guidelines.
The eatery’s normal hours of operation will be 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday; 10:30 a.m. to 12 a.m., Friday and Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 10 a.m. Sunday.
For now, due to the pandemic, these hours have been modified to 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., daily.
The Rosemary Grill is part of the Riverview 14 complex and is located near Four Stacks Brewery Co.
The eatery was originally set to open March 1, but due to the pandemic, its owners waited until state and county guidelines eased before actually opening the restaurant for indoor dining.
“As of May 4, we can have about 10 people inside at one time,” Abouelhouda said. “We have placed an “X’ on certain tables to space out seating and marked the floor for people to know where to stand when ordering to comply with state guidelines.”
Even with this restriction, Abouelhouda is happy to be getting back to business and looks forward to building the clientele at The Rosemary Grill with Laroufe.
“Cooking is my passion,” he said. “I grew up in the restaurant industry and have been everything from busboy and server to line cook. It brings me joy when I’m in the kitchen; it lifts my spirit and makes me happy.”
To place a phone order or for more information on The Rosemary Grill, call 813-405-4535.