HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - It's 7 a.m. and Demetra Karabetsos is doing it all inside iconic small business Ashley's Restaurant in Hartford.

She's the head chef and at this hour, the only waitress.

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Some people might flip out over the fact that an 85-year-old has this much energy, but Demetra has had a passion for this job ever since she moved to the U.S. in 1960.

"I am enjoying it so much honey, because I don’t even know anything else. I came from Greece. I don’t even know anything, no English, no cooking," Karabetsos tells us.

Initially, Demetra's husband, Sam, showed her the ropes.

Sadly, he died eighteen years ago, but now, Demetra runs Ashley's with her son, John, who comes in just a bit later.

Their business makes customers feel like family...

"We put a lot of love in the food. My mom, she taught me a lot," John Karabetsos explained.

Ashley's is located less than a mile from the capitol, so many political figures, including Governor Lamont, have grabbed a bite to eat here, but Demetra truly loves every customer and gets emotional when you ask about them.

"I love my people, every one of them," Karabetsos noted.

But love isn't the only thing overflowing at Ashley's. Demetra's motto seems to be 'More is more'.

Demetra doesn't skimp on the cinnamon or butter when she makes her famous French toast and the restaurant's top seller is their big breakfast plate.

"Eggs over with bacon and sausage, French toast, cinnamon, and butter, and that's it," Karabetsos says.

You won't leave Ashley's hungry, but more importantly, even if you only visit one time, you'll feel like your part of Demetra's large and well-loved circle.

"I appreciate my regular people and strangers coming from everywhere and I appreciate that so much, and I am here for my people," added Karabetsos.

Copyright 2021 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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