Beloved Local Restaurant to Close

Sparta Restaurant has been a fixture in the Great Road Shopping Center since 1971 - Image (c) JMcCT 2015
The Sparta Restaurant has been a fixture in the Great Road Shopping Center, open daily since 1976 – Image (c) JMcCT 2015


By Meredith McCulloch

The Sparta Restaurant, a local gathering place in the Great Road Shopping Center since 1976, will be closing by June 1 after thirty-nine years of operation. The owners, George and Effie Stamatakos, announced the news to the staff this week. A staff member said they would definitely be open this upcoming weekend and may remain open until June 1.

Sparta has been a frequent meeting spot. Many Bedford residents have gathered there regularly, combining breakfast or lunch with a volunteer or business meeting.  Others have a regular “Sparta night” for dinner.

People are drawn by the warm welcome, quiet atmosphere, and menu of traditional Greek and American food. The menu features seafood, lamb, Greek spinach pie and a full bar. Many are grateful for a locally owned restaurant with ready seating.

The Samatakos’ emigrated with their young son from the Greek mainland in 1971. In 1976 they not only became American citizens, but also opened their own restaurant, Sparta. After many years of hard work, George and Effie Stamatakos are moving on to a well-earned retirement, but Bedford is losing an important community institution.


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oldwiz65
oldwiz65
7 years ago

This is a real loss for Bedford. We will miss them!

kim siebert macphail
kim siebert macphail
7 years ago

Sparta holds so many memories for Bedfordites, past and current. For me, the best–and most poignant, now that Patty is no longer among us– are lunches with Jennifer Dalrymple, Janice Coppola and Patty Bushnell. Tuna! With pickles! And serious conversations. And laughter. Lots of laughter.

Thank you, Sparta.

pam bruno
pam bruno
7 years ago

it was a good place to get a bite to eat. i never got to try Effie’s onion rings, which i heard were the best around.

Ginni Spencer
Ginni Spencer
7 years ago

Funny — I never thought of Sparta as a restaurant; to me, it was always a diner. What’s the difference? Diners are time-honored, friendly gathering places, where customers and staff know each other, the food is good and predictable, and you can always get a table. Diners are owner-operated…and the owners are always there, offering a cheerful welcome and stopping table-side for a few minutes of conversation. There are regulars — retirees, breakfast buddies, Friday nighters, and over time they become part of the atmosphere, too. The friendly buzz of their table chatter and periodic bursts of laughter are as comforting as a favorite blanket. The wait staff really do say “The usual?” and it sounds right when they do. The diner — in this case, Sparta — is that wonderful half-way place between eating amid the comforts of home and “going out”, where jeans are ok and you don’t have to bother with lipstick if you don’t want to. I hate to say it, but diners like Sparta are a dying breed that even the best intentioned chain restaurants can’t make up for. Thank you for being part of our community.

oldwiz65
oldwiz65
7 years ago

We will really miss them! Such nice people working there. Won’t this mean their full liquor license will no be available?

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