It wasn't COVID-19 that led the popular Mint Hill, North Carolina eatery Jimmie's Restaurant to close its doors – it had been operating more than 60 years – but owner Chris Pourlos said he wanted to retire and his family agreed.
Jimmie's served American comfort meals but there's always a touch of Greek in a Greek-owned diner and Athena's Omelette with feta cheese showed it – but Pourlos said enough was enough and the time was up.
Pourlos ran the restaurant with his brother Deno and son Demetri, and told the Charlotte Observer that closing was a family decision and at 60 years old he wanted some time to travel.
“I’ll miss our staff and customers who have become dear friends,” Pourlos said. “They’re like family.” He said some customers ate two meals a day there and came in five days a week.
Pourlos said the restaurant only closed for two days during the pandemic and switched, like many others, to take-out before reopening the dining room at the end of May. He said while business remained good but he still had to cut the staff of 45 in half.