The proprietors of a well-established Northside diner are branching off to open another restaurant a few feet away.
Jimmy and Daniella Tsamouras, who own Dot’s Back Inn at 4030 MacArthur Ave. in Bellevue, announced Tuesday plans to open Demi’s – a Mediterranean-inspired restaurant – in space formerly occupied by the Omega Grecian Restaurant at 4017 MacArthur Ave.
The Tsamouras have owned Dot’s since 2007, when they purchased the Bellevue institution that’s been around for nearly 30 years and was featured on the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” a few years ago.
Jimmy Tsamouras said Dot’s will remain open and unaffected by the couple’s new operation.
“That place is not going anywhere,” he said. “We’re going to maintain both locations.”
Omega Grecian Restaurant closed in September after opening in the 2,200-square-foot space in March 2014.
Once Omega closed its doors for good, the Tsamouras contacted the landlord to inquire about the site, securing the location this fall and preparing the menu and space for a late December debut.
“It just seemed like the right concept for this location,” Jimmy said. “We love the neighborhood and felt this would be a good addition to the area.”
Jimmy said he’s wanted to open a Mediterranean restaurant for quite some time but was waiting for the right opportunity.
“My family’s Greek and my wife is Italian,” he said.
Jimmy said Demi’s menu plans to celebrate a number of traditional Greek, Italian and Spanish dishes. Menu items will include about six dips and spreads, white bean and arugula pita bruschetta, several Italian pasta and Marsala dishes and a few traditional Greek cuisines suck as spanakopita and a variety of kebobs.
“You never want to limit yourself when it comes to cooking,” Jimmy said. “The menu is a mix of traditional dishes that I’ve learned to prepare and took about a month-and-a-half to prepare.”
The new restaurant, named after the couple’s 5-year-old daughter, will seat about 95 patrons and will have a bar.
A second generation restaurateur, Jimmy is a graduate of New York’s Culinary Institute and had stints as a chef near and far, including at the former Hotel John Marshall. He said that while opening and operating a restaurant is never easy, the support from customers and nearby neighbors has given him the confidence to press forward with Demi’s.
“It can be scary,” Jimmy said of opening the new restaurant. “But in talking with people in the neighborhood, they seem very excited, and that makes me excited to be bringing something else new down here.”