'I want everyone to feel like family': Rise & Shine Family Restaurant in Sycamore open for business

SYCAMORE – Rise & Shine Family Restaurant, 1640 DeKalb Ave. in Sycamore, is all about family.

Rise & Shine, which opened July 20, is owned by Dashi Ajdini and his brother Nuri. Dashi’s wife Jamilia and Nuri’s wife Nushi also work at the restaurant. Both families moved to Sycamore with their children.

Dashi Ajdini used to own a restaurant in Danville for 20 years with his uncle. About a year ago, he bought the building at 1640 DeKalb Ave., the previous location of Pizza Hut, to start his own family restaurant.

“We put a lot of work into the building and made a lot of changes,” Ajdini said. “Now it’s totally different, changes everywhere. We wanted to make it a homey atmosphere.”

Ajdini said that one of his goals was to make sure the restaurant has “fresh ingredients, homestyle cooking, reasonable prices and everything made from scratch.”

The restaurant is open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. and serves breakfast all day, lunch and dinner. There are senior specials, lunch specials, daily specials and all-you-can-eat specials, including an all-you-can-eat fish fry on Fridays. Senior meals come with ice cream or tapioca pudding and the option to purchase a drink for $1.

“We have Italian dishes, steaks, ribs, pork chops, sandwiches and a lot of choices for dinner,” Ajdini said.

Ray and Vera Wedel of Sycamore stopped by the restaurant on its opening day.

“I drove past the sign a few times and the name always made me think of a Sunday school song that goes ‘rise and shine and give God glory,’” Ray Wedel said. “So we decided to stop by and try out the restaurant.”

Ray ordered the chicken parmesan and Vera had fried chicken.

“There are very good-sized portions and very tasty food,” Ray Wedel said. “Everything was well done and everyone is really friendly. I will tell everyone at my church that it’s a very nice restaurant. I’m sure we’ll be back soon.”

Jordan Pedersen of DeKalb ate at the restaurant with his dad, Jeff. Jordan ordered a chopped Cobb salad and Jeff ordered the fisherman’s platter.

“The hospitality’s great, the food is fresh and the soup was really good,” Jordan Pedersen said. “We’ll come back on Friday for the fish fry.”

Ron Cerutti of Sycamore had a breakfast special with eggs, bacon, hash browns and toast.

“It was delicious, I would definitely order it again,” he said.

Ajdini said hearing how much his customers enjoy the food and restaurant “is great, everyone’s had nothing but good things to say.”

“We’re very excited to be here and can’t wait to meet people and have regular customers,” Ajdini said. “I want everyone to feel like family here because we will treat them like family.”

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