Market celebrates 45th year in Evanston

Pete, now retired, Kostas and Tom Douvakis.

D & D Finer Foods celebrates its 45th year in Evanston on Sunday, Oct. 7, with an OctoberFeast from noon until 4 p.m. at the store at 825 Noyes St.

The Douvikas family will be giving away D & D specials from its famous hot dogs to samples from their well-stocked deli. There will be music, beer/wine/liquor tastings, as well as the giant pumpkin weight guessing contest the store has held for several years.

Tom Douvikas, who now partners with son Kostas, says he and his brother and former co-owner, Pete, came to the United States in 1955 and worked at hot dog stands and grocery stores including Jewel, National and Dominick’s.

But they longed to open their own store, finally doing so in 1973.

In doing it, they were following something of a family tradition. “Our grandfather used to sell oils, wine and olive oil in our small village back home in Greece,” Tom Douvikas says. -- items the store carries today.

Located near the Northwestern campus, the store draws many students as customers.

Kotsas Douvikas says the students' shopping habits have changed.

“Students don’t cook as much as they used to, they’re very happy that we now offer ready made meals that are student favorites, such as mac ‘n cheese, barbecued beef, roasted Greek chicken, fresh meal-sized salads and other items."

Asked whether Kostas was a frequent visitor to store as a youngster, Tom says that he started coming when he was about 10 years old. That trandtion may be continuing, Tom says, with his his granddaughter frequently accompanying her dad to the store.