This is not a very typical one. My father was the cook of the house since I can remember and he was taking big pride making different dishes when the kitchen was considered an exclusive woman's job. Later in his life he decided to take this to a profession and started an original 'Greek taverna" . This is where I spend my teenage years and learn about hospitality. I learn that everything tastes a little better if you love what you are doing, if you smile when you offer it, if the people around you are your friends, and not your judges. And boy he was good. He was the one that inherited the cooking gene from his Italian great grand father that landed in Crete a couple hundred years ago. His last name Belanti and his cooking skill was all he had when he won the heart of Yiayia Maria, and the approval of her father a rich rancher and wine maker, great great grandpa Herculis. The only daughter and child of a proud Cretan was impossible to marry an Italian. But grandpa was not there to take no for answer. He was there to stay and won them all over a dinner. The rest is the recent history of the Belanti family. And my dad the last carrier of that cooking gene until at my forties rather unexpectedly I took the same carrier turn. With the encouragement of Nikos, we ended up at the Dino's restaurant, favorite kid of our family friends and previous owners Peter and Alex Katsaros.
The Papadimas, on the other hand was a very typical Peloponnesian family of olive tree growers. He grew up in the family olive groves, watching the women of the family preparing the famous Kalamata olives and the men, trimming the trees giving them that rounded shape that is essential for a good produce. The boy, Nikos, did the unthinkable. Totally unexpectedly landed one day of 1987 in the state of Washington, full of dreams and hopes about a new life and adventure. The new, optimistic, full of potential land fitted better to his cool character. And this country always generous with the hard workers, the honest, and the spirited gave him finally a break; A warm place to work and raise his family, a restaurant to grow and thrive. Arcadia was happening taking over the old Dino's restaurant right here at the borders of Burien and Normandy Park.
So this is our family stories. Then the Greek met the Italian, the inland reached for the island, the reason fall for the temper. Nikos and Maria got married on the full moon of July 1997 in Arcadia. Two cute, nice kids Louis, 12 and Renia, 14 seem like the best we could get from this union. Look for them the next time you are here. They will be around or in our family pictures throughout Arcadia. And we are sure you will get to know us better while you keep return back to us. We were waiting for you, welcome.
This is our pride. You knew it as Dino's and you are checking it now as Arcadia. We hope for many, many times. While you dine with your friends, family, and loved ones we will witness you writting your own stories, creating your own memories around a table full of taste, color and love. How love can be used as an ingredient? Well this is our old family secret. Try it and fall in love with life, all over again.