Paymons gyros platter with basmati rice

Why is it “Gyro” and “Year-Oh” vs “Ghiro”?

Posted on by Paymon's Las Vegas in


Gyros are a Greek dish made from pork, chicken, or sometimes lamb cooked on a vertical rotisserie and served in a pita. They’re often topped with tomato, onion, cucumbers, salad greens, feta cheese, and even french fries. Any and all of them are perfect for completing this delicious dish. This spiced slice of heaven has gotten a lot more popular in recent years. Despite the buzz, it’s often up for debate how you’re actually supposed to pronounce the name.


The Confusion, Explained


The problem with this profoundly Greek word is how close it is to something English-speakers see it as. At first glance, it’s common to associate the word with the shorthand for “gyroscope,” leading to a pronunciation like “Jie-row.” This is usually the first pronunciation people attempt, before everyone around them simultaneously cringes and someone attempts to correct it.

There are a few of the most common ways to attempt this word here, with the most common and accepted answer being “YEE-row.” However, some brave souls try to get it closer to the original Greek pronunciation, and the closest they’ve found is “HEE-ro.” It’s so, so very close but not quite there – as the Greek “γύρος” comes a lot closer to being “Ghiro” – with the softest ‘G’ sound possible in front. It’s one of those sounds that sets apart the native tongue from the rest.

As another point of contention people love to discuss – a “gyro” is not the singular form of gyros! When you’re talking about a single serving of the dish, it’s still a gyros. The way English speakers say it, it’s not technically incorrect to call it a gyro, but it’s still fun to say it properly! Fun sort of information to be able to show off over your next meal.


Potato / Potahto, Right?


No matter how you want to pronounce it, it’s the same incredible dish across the board, especially at Paymon’s Mediterranean Restaurant. However it is that you want to order, we’ve always got the freshest and best recipes across the board. Check out our menu and visit our Las Vegas locations any day 4-7 PM and experience the best that Mediterranean cuisine has to offer.