Pin It

Family Matters 

Gayle and Nick Mourgides' kitchen is both big and cozy, the kind of place that makes you think of family. Done in yellow and white with a long farm table at one end, the room has lots of counter space for little helpers to work. The Mourgides --- owners of Olives (50 State Street, Pittsford, 381-3990) --- have a lot of little helpers, in fact. Five between them. As parents of a blended family, they needed to make room for everyone. So they expanded the kitchen of their 1924 Pittsford house into their dining room.

            "We have a huge Greek family and they're always here," Gayle says. "So at gatherings, where is everyone? In the kitchen."

            Spending time at home is a priority for the couple. Gayle and Nick manage to cook three nights a week for their kids, who range in age from three to 21 years old.

            "For the restaurant industry we're better balanced than most," Gayle says. "We can be home because we hired great staff." Sunday dinner is a big meal, Nick says. "We try to make it nice for the kids, to cook food they really like." They grill lamb chops or hamburgers for the kids and salmon or other fish for themselves. The kids also like fondue, Nick says.

            They had a long, narrow farm table made so that all seven of them could sit close together to talk and joke around, Gayle says. "There's a lot of teasing," she says. "How else could so many people get along so well? You have to be able to tease each other."

The white, glass-front cabinets lining the ochre walls lend a country feel to the kitchen, but this room leans more toward Mediterranean than country cozy. A decorative wrought-iron rack stands in the corner, large terracotta-colored tiles pave the floor, and speckly granite countertops stretch along both sides of the room. "I wanted the natural feel," Gayle says. "The granite and tiles make it warmer, more Mediterranean."

            They chose their appliances carefully to keep their costs down. "It was more important to have a room to put them in than to have a Viking stove," Gayle says. The cooktop, a 36-inch KitchenAid with five burners, and the refrigerator, which tucks into a nook in the wall, work just fine for them.

            But they splurged on a high-end KitchenAid dishwasher. Its floor-to-counter design means more space. They needed a well-made machine, Gayle says. "You know how kids are when they're loading the dishwasher."

            Expanding the kitchen into the dining room created some challenges. But anyone who's visited Olives knows that the Mourgides are skilled decorators. The subterranean restaurant, with its murals and eclectic furniture, feels more like an ocean-side bistro than a basement in Pittsford. Gail has used these skills at home, as well.

            "Everything is mix-match," Gayle says. "That's what makes your house a home, not a store showcase."

In This Guide...

    Home Design 2003

    Chefs at play We see these chefs at work in our favorite restaurants --- their kitchens full of steaming pots emanating wonderful smells.

    A Kitchen Built for Two

    Moe Smith will be the first to say it's not his kitchen --- his domain is outside where, year round, he established his reputation as king of the grill, grilling everything from hot dogs to fish and corn to peppers. "He used to barbeque every day," his wife Bernice says.

    Professional Paradise

    Gerry Vorrasi's kitchen, although still under construction, is a thing to behold. Located in the back of his 1860s home off East Avenue, it's a series of connected rooms that are both beautiful and highly functional.

    Rochester: Art for Living

    If you were in the grips of cabin fever this past winter, you might have wished your crib was more of a castle. There are several local alternatives to moving to Europe and actually buying one.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Latest in Home Design

  • It's curtains for you!
  • It's curtains for you!

    At some point, probably back when I was in college enjoying $2 pitches at happy hour, curtains became window treatments
    • Oct 4, 2006
  • You light up my life
  • You light up my life

    No longer strictly stuffy or fussy, chandeliers can brighten
    • Oct 4, 2006
  • Deep impact
  • Deep impact

    • Oct 4, 2006
  • More »

More by Jennifer Loviglio

Latest in Home Design

  • It's curtains for you!
  • It's curtains for you!

    At some point, probably back when I was in college enjoying $2 pitches at happy hour, curtains became window treatments
    • Oct 4, 2006
  • You light up my life
  • You light up my life

    No longer strictly stuffy or fussy, chandeliers can brighten
    • Oct 4, 2006
  • Deep impact
  • Deep impact

    • Oct 4, 2006
  • More »

More by Jennifer Loviglio

Browse Listings

Submit an event

Tweets @RocCityNews

© 2015 City Newspaper

Website powered by Foundation