Gardi’s Turn 50!
Cambridge’s favourite kebab house celebrates its 50th birthday this year.
READ: The Tab’s exclusive interview with Gardi’s owner Vas Annaastasiou.
Cambridge’s favourite kebab shop is celebrating its 50th birthday this year.
Incredibly, Gardenia has been satisfying pundits’ drunken cravings for meat and chips since 1961.
Despite controversy and threats of closure, everyone’s favourite Greek take away has managed to survive for 50 years.
Gardi’s owner Vas Annaastasiou told The Tab: “I love it here. People respect me, it’s a civilised place, and I love the adrenaline of working in such a busy environment.”
Gardenia actually began as “Inn” in 1902, before becoming a restaurant in 1945, but it was only registered as Gardenia in 1961 because of new registering laws.
The Cambridge stalwart was originally run by the Alexander family, then the Luiso famiy. Vas, the current owner, started working there part time in the late 80s, but liked it so much that he decided to buy it in 1990.
During the pre-Vas era, Gardi’s was more of a sit-down restaurant and was actually more expensive. In 1989 when he was working there first, chicken souvlaki was £5.70, compared to today’s £4.90.
Vas changed the business model to appeal to late night lager fiends, or in Vas’s words, he “opened the doors”.
Vas told The Tab that Gardi’s plan on celebrating the anniversary by holding a street party in May week. He said: “If we can get permission from the council, we want to hold a happening.”
“There will be food and Champagne and all the students can come and enjoy it.”