When Mad Moe’s initially opened up in Osprey in September of 2014, the owners referred to it as a “Pub & Grill,” but they eventually dropped that moniker.

“Because the food comes first,” said Peter Geannopulos, one of the owner/operators. “It’s really more like a grill.”

Geannopulos, whose partners in this project include real estate investor Chris Brown and operator Ed Arsenault, is also working with Brown and another restaurant investor, Mike Grantheon, to open a sports pub in Siesta Village in the first quarter of next year. For the six years prior to owning Mad Moe’s, Geannopulos owned and operated the Hillview Grill, in Sarasota, and then before that, owned and ran restaurants in his native Chicago and Arizona.

Mad Moe’s is a departure from those upscale, fine-dining eateries, but is no less focused on the food aspect.

“It’s a really casual, laid-back atmosphere, and we get a lot of families here,” Geannopulos said. “So we do have items like great burgers and wings, but we’ll also have featured menu specials that can be anything from homemade pimento cheese sandwiches to lobster rolls to salmon with mango salsa.”

Featured menu items are served from Thursday to Sunday. On Mondays, wings are only 85 cents. Tuesdays are for tacos (Tijuana Tuesday), and they’re 15 percent off on price, and Wednesdays, burgers are 15 percent off. For the burgers, you can create your own, but there are also other specialty burgers to choose from, such as the Blackened Burger, prepared with blackening seasoning and crumbled Blue Cheese.

Happy Hour at Mad Moe’s is really like Happy Day, since the special prices are offered from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. During that time, domestic draft beers are one dollar off, and all cocktails and house wines are $3.75. Monday through Friday, from 3 to 6 p.m., there is also a Happy Hour Bites menu, which features $5 prices on several variations of sliders.

Geannopulos said that since the restaurant first opened, it has been a popular destination for locals, particularly on the weekends, when diners gather to watch college and professional sports on the 22 television screens, both inside and outside.

There are even plaques that are engraved with the names of some of the regulars, attached to the backs of many of the chairs.

“We call that the 30-Day Challenge,” he said. “If you come here 30 days in a row, you get one of the plaques. We have a neighborhood atmosphere here, and the people from the neighborhoods around here, like Osprey, Nokomis and Venice, have been very supportive of us since the beginning.”

Mad Moe’s is located at 106 N. Tamiami Trail, in Osprey. It opens daily at 11 a.m. and then the kitchen closes at 10 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday, and at 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The bar closes one hour later than the kitchen every night. To learn about special events and to find out more, visit the Facebook page or the website at http://madmoes.com or call 941-966-9700.

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