Kimball Edition: Ya'Sou Restaurant

By Candace Nelson - 9:09 PM


I have wanted to try this Greek restaurant in Kimball, West Virginia, for as long as I can remember. Ya'Sou Restaurant is a stalwart in terms of restaurants in southern West Virginia; the longevity of this restaurant in this area is admirable. Low population, fairly conservative and low income community - yet this restaurant survives. Moreover, it thrives as a community gathering space and center of town.


"On February 7, 1947, the Greek-American families of John Genadopoulos and Adamantios “Tommy” Balasis and Mary Balasis purchased the A.P. Wood Grocery. Though the store was renamed the West Virginia Grocery, the name A.P. Wood remains etched in beautiful stained glass over the door at present day Ya’Sou. From that time until the devasting flood of July 2001, the family kept the grocery in operation. Ten months later, a second major flood hit the town within days of the business being reopened. Despite this major setback, we were determined to move forward and reopen the business. Having my own restaurant was a lifelong dream, and on February 7, 2003, with the help of my mother Mary Balasis, my brothers John and Mathew, my husband Jimmy Joe, my son Adam, my mother-in-law Mary Verduce Gianato and the Grace of God, that dream became a reality with the opening of Ya’Sou Restaurant. I am immensely proud of the success that I have achieved. I offer home-cooked meals, daily specials, and Greek cuisine along with many sandwich choices. Most of the recipes I have used have been handed down to me from my mother and grandmother. My love for the restaurant business came from my first job at the Virginian Restaurant in Pearisburg, Virginia, working under the guiding hands of, in my opinion, two of the greatest chefs, uncles and mentors, Mike and George Genadopoulos. It was my days at the Virginian that made me realize I would someday like to become a great chef. I strive for this every day. This has allowed me to meet many wonderful people who have stopped in along the way, as well as many local regulars who come in and make my day complete. We hope to serve you for many years to come. Everyone that comes here, even for one time, becomes a part of the labyrinth of my life and will always be part of the memories here. I want my guests to feel at home and comfortable when that are here. If you have any concerns or requests, please feel free to ask. ---Markella"


The space itself is a bit cluttered, with memorabilia and other artifacts donning the walls. The menu features hamburgers, hot dogs, gyros, wings, subs, salads. Special shoutout to the spanakopita, souvlaki sandwich and baklava.


I ordered the gyro with lamb, and it was great. It was simple but flavorful. You can't see the veggies tucked in there, but they added the crispness and freshness needed. And the hospitality? Top notch.


Grade: A

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