When retirement seemed right for the longtime owner of the Big Boy eatery on Maple Road, Gerry Vento took notice. He’s been working on the corporate side of the company for a decade, but always wanted to have his own restaurant, and this was the perfect time. He took over operations on April 26 of this year and is now getting to know all the neighborhood’s long-time customers.
“I’ve been in the industry for 28 years,” Vento notes. “I started when I was 15 as a dishwasher, moved to the Chuck Muer Corporation and then the last 10 years with Big Boy.” Now it’s on to a new adventure.
The Macomb Township resident smiles, and adds, “I’m very glad I did it. This is a great location, and I have a great staff and great customers.”
And, all the things you love about Big Boy, home of the original Double Decker Cheeseburger, are still available at this restaurant, which is now over 80 years old. (It’s not too late in the season for strawberry pie.) They still have shakes, malts, and yes, root beer floats, perfect for this weather.
The Salad Bar is available from 9 a.m. to close. There’s an all-you-can-eat Breakfast Bar on Saturday and Sunday from 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Plus, you can have breakfast any time and there are literally dozens of entrees from burgers to pasta to fish. You won’t be disappointed and the prices are still modest.
For those with allergies, the Big Boy menu marks any item that may contain nuts.
“I love the hospitality industry,” Vento confesses. “I enjoy people having a good experience and I want the food service they’re getting to be exceptional. I love taking care of people.”
What Gerry wants is his own “Cheers” where everyone knows your name. And, he seems able to greet everyone coming in at 10 a.m. on a Tuesday morning by name.
This Big Boy is also a bit of a Vento family affair, too. Gerry’s wife Terri, who works at Gleba & Associates financial planners up on Square Lake in Troy, is keeping the restaurant’s books. Son Vincent, who’s home for summer from Central Michigan where he’s studying pre-law, is a server this season. And daughter Genna, who plans to be a teacher, will probably be able to find work here when she’s ready.
Big Boy is open from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday and until midnight on Friday and Saturday. Come and enjoy the friendly atmosphere and tasty food.