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Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

New Greek restaurant brings good food, great times

Totus Tuus Keely
The Flame, 209 East Lincoln Highway, stands next to two hair salons in downtown DeKalb. The Flame opened its doors Jan. 15 and has extended to carry-outs during open hours, 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and closes an hour later Friday and Saturday. (Totus Tuus Keely | Northern Star)

As you approach the front of a restaurant, the sound of Greek music fills the air. 

You open the door and the aromas hit your nostrils, transporting you to a different world. 

With long white columns and large portraits, entering The Flame feels like a trip to the Greek countryside. 

The restaurant has been open since Jan. 15, and the most important aspect of the restaurant is good hospitality. That principle is the core of their approach, according to the owner, Foti Pappas. 

“As you walk into the door here, you’ll see the word philoxenia: it’s the art of expressing love and friendship to strangers,” Pappas said. “It kind of sets the tone from the moment they enter. The decor, the music, the authentic food, the authentic recipes allow the customers to experience that principle.” 

As a child of immigrants, Pappas seeks to infuse his culture into his work. Nothing is more important than making people feel welcomed and like family, Pappas said.

“I’ve done the corporate thing, and, you know, it wasn’t for me. The mom and pop shops, that’s where it’s at,” Pappas said. “You get to be more personal, and unlike a franchise, you get to be more creative.”  

For Pappas, this creativity is vital as he personally curated the menu and tested all of the items himself. 

“I think there’s something for everyone. We’ve got amazing vegetarian options, the best quality, the freshest meats and the best fresh ingredients,” Pappas said.  

If Pappas had to choose his favorite menu item, it has to be the gyro. 

“We’ve got the best gyros in the state,” Pappas said. “Customers love them.” 

The gyro pita is priced at $16 and is made with beef, lamb tzatziki sauce, onions and tomatoes.  

Besides gyros, The Flame offers a wide array of other Greek staples such as street food wraps, Greek lamb chops, pasticho, salmon and more. 

For guests 21 years and older, Pappas also recommended trying one of their authentic Greek wines. 

Pappas recommended the Greek Rose wine, which comes in three varieties.  

Cavino Ionos Roditis is dry rose wine with fruity and floral undertones. It is served for $6 a glass or $20 a bottle.  

Apelia Dry Rose Roditis is another dry fruity wine that is a tinge sweeter with a caramel aftertaste. It is served at $7 a glass and $25 a bottle.  

Domaine C. Lazaridi Rose is a little higher end according to Pappas. It is a balanced fruity blend and is only served by the bottle, priced at $50. 

For those with a sweet tooth, the kitchen also features classic Greek baklava, baklava cheesecake and lukumades, fried dough balls. 

The baklava and lukumádes are each $6 a piece while the baklava cheesecake is priced at $7. 

The Flame, located at 209 E. Lincoln Highway is open from 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11:30 a.m. to  9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.  


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