The global surge in inflation from the “double whammy” of pandemic-related disruption and the Russian invasion of Ukraine has punished consumers in Europe over the past two years, with one “casualty” in Greece being the country’s iconic “souvlaki”, alternatively known the world over as “gyro”.

According to market watchers in the country, the price of a single souvlaki is now expected to surpass four euros, even in working-class neighborhoods. Prices in high-tourism areas over the summer had already exceeded the four-euro threshold for the well-known Grecian “fast food”.

The price for a souvlaki – similar to olive oil, a culinary mainstay in the country – is judged as having an additional psychological impact on consumers and household spending habits.

The Greek souvlaki is usually comprised of pork or chicken meat – cut in small cubes or slivers sliced from a rotisserie – wrapped in a flour pita, with added ingredients being chopped tomatoes, onions, possibly fries and the garlic yoghurt-like tzatziki – depending on one’s specific preferences.

Speaking to the Athens-based Mega Channel, the president of the association of grill owners in the greater Athens-Piraeus area said the average price at the moment for the pita-meat combo remains at between 3.20 to 3.30 euros, although the trend is for price hikes to bring it closer to 3.70 euros.

Another telling figure is the fact that turnover is also falling at neighboring grill houses, estimated at 20 to 30 percent in the greater Athens area, as customers are cutting back on orders or even avoiding orders all together.