When Anthony and Faye Yianniarrakis and their family finally got their new location for Anthony’s Restaurant open last month near the intersection of Rt. 50 and Annandale Road, they had to go with a “soft opening” approach because the Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control was taking its sweet time approving their permit.
But the good news is that this week, the permit has finally came through, and Peter Zoutis, husband of Tony and Faye’s daughter Penny, admitted that the lack of a liquor license hurt business. But that will no longer be an issue, and unlike at the legendary family restaurant’s old location in downtown Falls Church, the new site now features a bar and will have a full selection of libation offerings.
So, soon a gala grand opening will occur, with invitations extended far and wide, and especially where all the many loyal customers of the restaurant will get them.
The new Anthony’s site has plenty of parking, is in a new building and with a new kitchen. The main dining area and an auxiliary room available for meetings and parties was careful designed by the family with the help of an architect, and offers an airy, friendly ambiance.
For patrons of the old Anthony’s, there since 1972, the new location is very accessible and the new menu expands the choices, including more and healthier salads and main dishes.
“We’ve kept the old and added new,” Zoutis said. The menu presents a tasty array of Greek and Italian foods with American favorites, too. The categories for their “Signature Dinners” are Greek, Seafood and Steak, Pork and Chicken. Pasta offerings fill an entire page of the menu, and of course there are a myriad of options for Anthony’s famed New York-style pizza with 18 topping to choose from.
Soon, the restaurant will be offering breakfast on the weekends, but not quite yet. Now, it opens at 11 a.m. daily, and stays open to 10 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday, and 11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.
The re-opening of Anthony’s last August 11 marked such a happy occasion for the restaurant’s many loyal customers, hundreds of whom protested by signing petitions and making speeches before the Falls Church City Council, hoping to preserve the 300 W. Broad location. Now, that address is home to a giant hole in the ground, as construction is underway for a large-scale mixed use project that will have a state-of-the-art Harris Teeter grocery as its anchor.
According to Zoutis, the new location is not only attracting a lot of the customers from the old site, but is adding a whole new array of customers from the immediate residential area. There are other restaurants in the area, but none with the family-style ambiance of the new Anthony’s.
Anthony Yianniarrakis, the founder and owner, came to the U.S. from Molaoi, Greece, in the 1960s, as a history of the restaurant family published in the menu recounts. His original Falls Church location opened on May 21, 1972, initially as a tiny pizza and sub shop. He married Faye in 1976, a Greek native from the village of Niata in southern Greece, where she founded a taverna that remains open to this day, run by her older brother.
With two children, Anthony and Faye opened a second restaurant location in Manassas in 1995, which has remained successful.
Now, in the new Annandale Road location, a picturesque mural graces one full wall in the second dining area. Painted by Alexia Scott from a photograph, it depicts Faye’s Greek home of Niata, which was also the home of Zoutis (he can point out his house in the mural if you ask him to).
“Anthony, Faye, their children and their grandchildren are thrilled to return to Falls Church in our new home on Annandale Road,” the menu states. “We welcome you to our restaurant and we look forward to serving you and your family for generations to come.”