New restaurant on Main Street opened in August, giving EL a new place to build community
MIKAYLA STAHL & JENNIE SHERWOOD
Downtown Niantic welcomed a “Mediterrasian”-cuisine-serving restaurant called Dev’s to Main Street this summer, adding another option to stop for a bite.
The food at Dev’s reflects the story of owner Candance Devendittis’ unique life. She lived in Spain as a young girl, and also lived in Taiwan where she graduated from high school, paving the way for Mediterranean and Asian cuisine on their menu. They also serve Tapas, an appetizer from Spanish culture, giving Dev’s a very diverse and exciting menu.
They started out in New London, opening in 2007, but migrated to EL after a partnership with friend Guy Blackburn in town. Devendittis took a risk and started the restaurant 14 years ago.
“If you don’t think that you’re going to love working really hard, long hours, and getting your hands dirty, then this is not the place for you, but if you have the passion, it’s the best job you’ll ever get.”– Candance Devendittis
Derived from their last name, it is only fitting that Dev’s is a family business. Devendittis’ mother enjoys being a hostess and socializing with customers, and her cousin Rachel Devendittis is their chef.
“I’m a business owner. A lot of [the workers] happen to be women,” Candace said. “It’s obvious when you come in here: there are a lot of women, and we’re working real hard.”
The restaurant also supports diversity in their employees and customers, with a motto Devendittis always goes by.
“When we say all are welcome here, all are welcome here. You need to know that as you come into my restaurant. We take that really seriously,” said Devendittis. After transitioning from New London to downtown Niantic, Dev’s couldn’t be happier about their new atmosphere.
“It’s such a welcoming community. Everyone bent over backward to help us. From the town to the people knocking on the window asking when we open, it makes me giddy coming into work.”– Candance Devendittis
Dev’s prides themselves on their extensive menu. Starting with just nine Tapas appetizers, they have grown to 27 and a full list of entrees. Their diverse menu not only caters to large groups but picky eaters as well. They will host special dinners once per month with different themes for the community to enjoy. Their next dinner will be on Sept. 27 with a “Coastal Evening in Niantic” seafood theme.
“The bottom line is that we come to work every day, and we love it,” said Devendittis. “Is it hard? Yes. Is it difficult? Yes. Do we still love it? Absolutely.”