In a small town like Lanark, the value of family is part of this place’s identity.
One location where that is alive and well is a restaurant on the south edge of town.
With a name like Brothers Inn, it’s easy to assume there are brothers.
Co-owner Ozzie Seferi said, “Three brothers working here. I’m Ozzie, the guy you just met, that’s Mazi. He’s my oldest brother, and then I have another brother, his name is Kimi.”
They make up the owners of the family restaurant, where about 15 members of the Seferi family have worked.
Ozzie said, “My mom is here, my dad then three brothers, so everybody is like who is the boss. Tell me who is the main boss. I always tell them my mom is the boss.”
But the family covered a fair distance before landing in Lanark in 2004.
Co-owner Mazi Seferi said, “I came here in 1982 with my dad.”
The Seferi family moved from the Balkans nation of Albania and settled in the Chicago area in the years that followed.
Ozzie said, “Everybody would tell us why don’t you guys buy your own restaurant.”
That really heated up during a drive for the three brothers and their dad when they stumbled on a for sale sign on the way to Savanna.
“We saw the number there,” Mazi said, “We called and it was kind of late, like 9 o’clock at night.”
Mazi added, “We called him that night and he came that night and we made a deal.”
That night made this small town their work and home.
Ozzie said, “We all split like 50 yards apart.”
Ozzie’s son Valdet grew up here and while post-college he’ll soon be moving on, the job serves up a good serving of family.
Valdet Seferi said, “When you’re working different jobs you might not see your dad or your uncle every day but we all work together and then being able to hang out.”
And while people come to fill their stomachs.
Ozzie said, “Probably 80 percent of the customers we know their names. That’s how much loyal customers we have.”
Mazi said, “They come at least a couple of times a day.”
Each meal includes the ingredient of brotherly love and encouraging time that is priceless with the family.
Mazi said, “We’re like a family. All together.”