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Sep 13, 2007 01:11 PM

Has anyone else tried Kokopelli Mexican Grill in Chandler

My wife and I went to Home Depot on S. Arizona Ave at Chandler last weekend. We spotted a new Mexican restarant called Kokopelli Fresh Mexican Grill at the corner of S. Arizona Ave and Ocotillo Rd. It was dinner time so we decided to try it out. We were glad we did. Their food was absolutely fabulous and great value. I had a grilled sirloin dinner which served an 8 oz. sirloin steak, a choice of brown or white rice, pinto or black beans, grilled vegetables, tortillas, and a side of chips and homemade salsa for under $10. What an incredible deal!! The steak was tender and delicious. My wife had a mahi mahi taco salad. The fish was grilled not fried. It was not greasy at all and was delicious. The salsa was homemade and taste great. Even better, since all beers and margaritas were only $2 on every Friday and Saturday, I had a mexican beer and my wife had a strawberry margarita with our dinner. That was a great dinner.

Kokopelli is supposed to be a fast casual Mexican restaurant, but they are different from other fast food restaurants. I actually like their concept. Like most fast food places, you get in line and order what you want. You watch them prepare it in front of you so you can basically customize what you want. Then you pay and bring your food to your table. In my case, they brought my food to my table since it took a little longer to prepare my steak dinner. They actually serve the food on a real dinner plate during dinner hours. They offer vast menu selection usually only found in full service Mexican restaurants (such as my steak dinner). They even have deserts, different kinds of beers, margaritas and other drinks. When we were there, they had just installed a big screen TV but was not hooked up at the time. It would be a great place to hang out with friends for good Mexican food and drinks and watch the games.

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  1. I've frequented the origonal store at 20th and Highland in Phoenix and I love it as a great, inexpensive, fast, friendly, hefty-but-healthy lunch option. I have no idea how the expansion into franchising will translate, but I like Kokopelli a lot more than Q'Doba, Chipotle, or Taco del Mar, which are all fine.

    1 Reply
    1. re: misohungrychewlow

      I've never tried the original one in Phoenix, but I heard it is very good. I guess that's why they want to expand it into a franchise.

    2. I saw your posting and decided to try it out. The food was great and good value. I definitely will go back. I drove by Kokopelli almost everyday but I never knew they were a Mexican restaurant.

      3 Replies
      1. re: esquiremom

        I now go there quite often for lunch. I really like that place a lot. The food is fresh and delicious. The service is fast and the staff is friendly. They offer 25% off at lunch time every Tuesday. You definitely will see me there on Tuesday;-) I agree that it is somewhat hard to read from their sign that it is a Mexican restaurant. I think they need a better sign.

        1. re: dullperson

          I drove by Kokopelli yesterday. They have new window signs that say "Fresh Mexican Grill". I think they've read your posting.
          It is a little too far for me to go lunch there. Although it sounds so tempting, I don't think I can take advantage of their 25% off lunch on Tuesday. However I did order take out from them couple days ago after I picked up my kid from soccer practice.

          1. re: esquiremom

            Yeah. I noticed that too. I talked to the manager couple of weeks ago. She said they realized the problem but it took them a long time to get the approval for the window sign. She said the restaurant has been opened since December last year, but there are still customers who live in the neighborhood not knowing they were open or what type of food they serve.

      2. In my college days I worked at the Camelback Colonnade, and ate there at least once a week. As much as I liked it then, I am really past the whole Fresh Mex thing. I think the flooding of the market has ruined it for me.

        2 Replies
        1. re: ValleyFever

          You live in the 'Southwest', you've got to love Fresh Mex food. I used to live in Philadelphia and I loved the Philly Cheesesteaks and Italian/pizzas etc. I did not care for Mexican food much then. Now that I am here, I actually begin to like Mexican/Southwest food a lot. It is a fresh alternative for me and is a lot healthier (I think).

          1. re: dullperson

            I love mexican food, just not fresh mex. I prefer to keep it authentic. I'll eat pretty much anything Mexican from Baja to Sonoran to Jalisco to Oaxaca to Yucatan. I distinct, and all good, but the fresh mex crap is a fast food fabrication. I'd rather eat filibertos.

        2. Hmm, had an opposite experience. Tried the steak burrito and my hubby had the calabacitas and they tried to get away with serving him these four little wilted wrinkled little dregs of squash until we asked for a fresh batch. The fresh batch involved throwing raw onions, zucchini and yellow squash in a skillet with some oil. Maybe in their haste they forgot the seasonings, or maybe it was our bad for ordering a veggie option at a fast food place, but it was pretty bland and bad and I'll stick to the Chipotle 2 minutes away. Also tried the other fresh mex place across the street near the Panda Express - Moe's Southwest Grill I think? - and it was even worse.

          2 Replies
          1. re: yamalam

            I am surprised. When did you go there? By the way Moe's has been closed since February if not earlier. I hope your experience was based on your visit before June when they changed the management. The current manager one time told me that the staff before her was getting so bad that the restaurant got rid of the entire crew including the mangers. I actually told her about your comment when I ate there at lunch time today. She knew exactly what you were talking about. She said they now made the calabacita mix up with all of the seasoning on them every morning and they only cook it when customers order them so they always remain fresh.

            1. re: dullperson

              It was a while ago...I'll to give it a second try, thanks!

          2. The original comment has been removed