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Maui Wowi / Mr. Greek (PHX)

Two "opening soon" signs popped up overnight in Arcadia along Indian School - Mr. Greek in the old home of a fast-food Mexican place, just east of 40th St; Maui Wow is in the old home of Carvel, at 38th St (in the Slice of Sicily and Autumn Court complex). Does anyone know anything about these places?

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  1. A new coffee shop just opened by my house in CHandler called Maui Wowi...if this is the same, it's a franchise. Hawaii themed coffee shop. They do sell Kona coffee. I stopped in one morning on my way home from a tennis match....ordered a drip coffee which clearly had been sitting too long.Probably would have been a lot better fresh. They make all the usual coffee drinks as well. They had a few muffins for sale...but didn't try any. Wasn't an overly cozy kind of place so not somewhere I'd choose to sit with a book over a cup of coffee.

    http://www.mauiwowi.com/

    Aside: The Carvel in Ocotillo recently closed...did all the Carvels in Phoenix close?? boohoo!

    1 Reply
    1. re: ziggylu

      Yes, looks like that's the same place, thanks for the link.

    2. Poor Maui Wowi. That complex is cursed.

      9 Replies
      1. re: ValleyFever

        Actually I'm not so sure if that's completely true - SoS and Autumn Court have both been there for years.

        1. re: azhotdish

          Also true for Thai Lahna. It's been around for over a decade.

          1. re: azhotdish

            Autumn Court has only been there a couple years. It was on Central before it moved to that location.

            Before Autumn Court it was some grill, and before that it was Mulberry Street.

            Wasn't Carvel a Blimpie?

            Slice of Sicily and Thai Lhana have both been there for some time. Maybe its just the buildings that aren't attached to the actual strip that are cursed.

            1. re: ValleyFever

              Correct.

              Before Autumn Court, it was Flatiron Grill while arose from the ashes of Roti Joe's. I still remember when it was built as a Country Kitchen.

              Carvel was indeed a Blimpie and before that a Dairy Queen.

              1. re: Seth Chadwick

                Right you are, of course, about Autumn Court, I remember short-lived Flat-Iron Grill. For some reason, I had it confused with China Village down the road, which I enjoy from time-to-time for American-ized Chinese.

          2. re: ValleyFever

            Maui Wowi is indeed a chain, they have locations around the country. Considering that their website is more about the franchise opportunities and the products almost hide, I'm not expecting much. Especially after going through the site and seeing that the main connection with Hawaii is that the Colorado based founders honeymooned there.

            www.mauiwowi.com

            Where Mr. Greek is going is a challenging location. I remember when Maxie's World Grill was there they did fantastic. Then they thought the could take the place and turn it full-service up where Chelsea's Kitchen is now, and failed miserably. After them came Coconut Joe's, a Hawaiian BBQ place that added Maxie's burgers to the menu to try and prop up sagging sales... it didn't work. Then there were two different quickie Mex places, the first of which was open for about two weeks, and the second might have been open for about 20 minutes while I wasn't looking. Mr. Greek definitely has a good idea repainting the building so that the roof is bright blue... you can now see the building from 1/4 mile down eastbound Indian School despite being behind another building. Of course, after that hideous, shoddy orange-yellow-green paint scheme that one of the Mex places did previously, I'd be repainting the place too.

            I noticed that a few days ago, the "World's Greatest Mexican" sign on the front of the building now says "World's Greatest ________", almost certainly waiting for a new final word. I love that the place has been through at least 5 different owners now and that sign remains.

            1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

              I've watched Maxie's, Coconut Joe's, Uncle Chen's, a forgotten taco shop and Salsa's come and go from that location in 6 years or so, so good luck to Mr. Greek.

              As for Maui Wowi. With Mama Java's and Acacia Cafe across the street, they should provide something different and lure clientel.

              1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                "I noticed that a few days ago, the "World's Greatest Mexican" sign on the front of the building now says "World's Greatest ________", almost certainly waiting for a new final word. I love that the place has been through at least 5 different owners now and that sign remains." - JK

                I whole heartedly agree. That sign makes the building!

                1. re: ValleyFever

                  They changed the sign. It now says "Chicago Style Gyros" in bright red block letters. Apparently they aren't the world's greatest.

            2. Today was the 1st day open for Maui Wowi. We hit it unknowing that after Vincent's and stay away - at least for a long while. We weren't paying attention when our drinks were done but the resultant lattes were pretty much the worst we'd ever had. 0 foam. Absolutely 0. Tasted like coffee grounds. When we thought back to it, we think they must have made them with regular drip coffee & milk. There were no sounds of tamping, pulling a shot or frothing any milk. It might almost be worth it to go back to pay attention to the way the drinks were made but I don't think we can bring ourselves to. Didn't drink the drinks. Couldn't. Had to make an emergency trip to Lux and the world seemed right again.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ccl1111

                There is a Maui Wowi near my home in Glendale too. They have coffee and smoothies, but leave much to be desired. I haven't had the coffee, but tried a smoothie once. Just some crap made from concentrate.

              2. I swung by Maui Wowi this afternoon on the way home from work for some afternoon coffee since I rarely see cars parked outside in the morning. Being 3:30pm, I expected it to be burnt, which it wasn't since it's not sitting on a hot burner. The molokai blend (regular, $1.80) tasted ok enough, with low acidity and a what I would consider medium body (this is actually their dark roast); it probably had been brewed a couple hours ago though, if I had to guess. The inside looked clean with various tables and couches but no music. I actually stopped in to grab a menu, which can be downloaded on their website (for this location only): http://www.gethidrinks.com/. Since there aren't many places for smoothies in the area, which I sometimes crave, I'll probably be back. The guys behind the counter who were helping me said they hadn't had their grand opening yet, so we'll see how it goes.

                1. winedubar - they sell 100% kona for your father (?) @ $31.99/lb. The beans come from: http://www.mountainthunder.com/

                  1. Just an FYI that Mr. Greek is now officially open for business.

                    1. I popped into Mr. Greek for a quick lunch, today.

                      I ordered a falafel pita combo, which is three relatively large falafels on a pita with lettuce, tomato, and a little dressing. I really couldn't tell if the dressing was tahini or tsatziki, because there wasn't very much. This also comes with a soda and your choice of fries or salad, for about $8.

                      I thought the falafel was good. Not too crisp, which I like. The salad was very fresh for a pre-assembled sort. They also gave me fries, by mistake, and they were pretty good, too.

                      This is a counter-service kind of place, and a bit short of staff, so, the tables aren't kept as clean as one might desire. I think the quality of the food is above average, considering.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: johnseberg

                        Mr Greek is now Z's Greek (has been for quite a while). I'm pretty sure it is just a name change. I stopped in on Sunday afternoon, not wanting to wait for a table at Pita Jungle. I had a large Greek salad with a couple falafels on the side. Again, the quality of the food here was better than expected.

                        -----
                        Zs Greek
                        4026 E Indian School Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85018

                        1. re: johnseberg

                          Only been there once, but the gyro was pretty lackluster. I realize it's a factory-processed cone of meat, and there's only so much you can do with that, but fire goes a long way towards making it tasty and the meat I had didn't look or taste like it had been in the same zip code as a spit, and I couldn't see any from the dining room. Chicago Gyros, a few blocks down the street, was a marginal improvement, but I can't speak that positively of either.

                          1. re: Dmnkly

                            I haven't had any good gyros in Phoenix, not that I've tried them very much. I just went to Greek Patio, tonight, and they were way below average, seemed re-heated.

                            -----
                            Greek Patio
                            402 E Greenway Pkwy # 2, Phoenix, AZ

                      2. Now that I've been a few times, I think Mr. Greek is a good neighborhood spot. Ordered the falafel again which is only ok, my gf had the feta burger which was very good and I had the lamb souvlaki pita which was quite tasty and nicely grilled (if not as tender as it could have been). They really do use fresh ingredients, which is a big plus for us.

                        Free wifi as well.
                        http://www.mrgreek.net/

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: azhotdish

                          We stopped in for lunch and really enjoyed it. The hummus is, to our tastes, excellent. It's about as good as our favorite at Shish Kebab House. Tara had the chicken souvlaki combo and loved it. My gyro combo was very good as well.