SYCAMORE – Makie Maratos is looking forward sharing his family’s traditional Greek recipes with the community during this year’s Sycamore’s Eat Week.
Maratos, who owns The Village, 418 W. State St. in Sycamore, with his wife Kari and mother Jeanette, opened the restaurant Nov. 26. He said that opening a Greek restaurant has always been one of his dreams.
“I’ve always wanted to share my family’s traditional Greek recipes with the community,” he said. “Sycamore’s Eat Week is a great opportunity to offer a little taste of Greece.”
Sycamore’s Eat Week, organized by the Sycamore Chamber of Commerce, runs Jan. 24 through Jan. 31. There are about 12 restaurants participating in the promotion, each offering specials, discounts and meal deals with no coupons or tickets required. The event is sponsored by DeKalb Sycamore Chevrolet Buick GMC.
Specials offered during the week include 10% off a guest’s entire order at Giordano’s of Sycamore, $1 off drinks at Kate’s Place and $1 cake pops at Polka Dot Bakery. Meal specials include a barbecue rib dinner at Sycamore Tom & Jerry’s, a prime rib burger at The Dirty Bird Chicken Joint and a Cubano sandwich at Slow Smoke BBQ.
For a list of participating restaurants and their specials, visit www.discoversycamore.com.
The Village’s special is Taste the Village: one pork or chicken souvlaki, half a serving of moussaka or pastitsio and a side Greek salad or avgolemono soup for $9.99.
Makie Maratos said that sharing some of the restaurant’s best dishes as a special is also a tribute to his father, Pete, who passed away a few weeks ago.
“My father lived in Greece until he was about 13, and all of our recipes are ones passed down through the years in my family,” he said.
“At least 90% of everything on the menu is made from scratch, including our gyro,” Kari Maratos said.
Shelby Crackel, events and marketing assistant with the Sycamore Chamber of Commerce, described Sycamore’s Eat Week as “an opportunity to support local.”
“January is often a slow month for business, and the week is really just about promoting Sycamore’s restaurants, bars and eateries,” she said. “It’s easy to participate: dine in, carry-out, drive-thru or delivery, there are a lot of options. You can stop at one restaurant for breakfast, another for lunch and another for dinner. You can try new places you’ve never been to before and have your whole day – or your whole week – of meals covered.”
Meals can even be replaced with drinks at Kate’s Place, 114 S. California St. in Sycamore. The shop offers teas, coffees and protein shakes.
“Eat Week is a great chamber event because it helps bring new customers in,” said owner Katie Huftalin. “You can have a drink as a meal replacement or as a snack. Our boosted teas are like energy drinks without the crash, and our shakes are really popular.”
Huftalin recommends her Twix shake or firecracker boosted tea. During Sycamore’s Eat Week, all 16-, 24- and 32-ounce drinks are $1 off at Kate’s Place.
Jaimie Feathers, manager of MVP Sports Bar, 124 S. California St. in Sycamore, said that a limited menu will be available for Sycamore’s Eat Week with 10 to 15 new items for customers to try. There will be suggestions for beer and drink pairings with all items.
“We’re testing out new items and would love feedback,” Feathers said. “One of my favorite items on the menu is a cilantro burger with an egg on top. Eat Week is the perfect time to tweak our menu, try new things and let the chefs try out new recipes and menu options. It also brings in lots of new people, people from Sycamore and from out of town.”
Crackel said that Sycamore residents, community members and visitors can all easily participate in Sycamore’s Eat Week.
“All you have to do is go to the restaurant and say you’re there for the Eat Week special,” Crackel said. “It’s a great way to support local restaurants and businesses, and it keeps Sycamore a unique place to live, work and dine.”