Wednesday, 12 August 2009 12:16

Abe's Mugs Grill & Bar Formerly Mugs N Jugs Gets New Name But Keeps Quality Food and Service

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Abe Moussa with two of Abe's Mugs Grill & Bar Waitresses - Photo by Simaen SkolfieldOn July 21st, Abe Moussa, the owner of the newly renamed Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar (formerly Mugs and Jugs) cut the ribbon to honor the name change and celebrate the 5th anniversary of the Missouri Avenue restaurant.

Abe Moussa began his restaurant career as a dishwasher at Sweetwaters, where he worked his way up to manager. He had set a goal, however, to own his own business by the time he was 30. When he turned 29, he found “Mugs and Jugs.” Unable to pay for the place at first, Moussa worked for the owner for six months to make the down payment. Since he took over Mugs and Jugs in 1998, Moussa has managed to turn the hole-in-the-wall into a successful, respectable chain of sports bars.

Moussa revamped the image of Mugs and Jugs, steering clear of the name’s obvious innuendo. He provided his waitresses with an option, allowing the alternative of pants rather than the usual short-shorts and revealing top. He has since done away with the shorts altogether, providing a more comfortable and modest workplace for his staff.

Today, the only similarity to the location he bought 11 years ago and sold on 66th Street in Clearwater is the name, “Mugs Customers enjoy the same great food at the newly names Abe's Mugs Grill & Bar - Photo by Simaen Skolfieldand Jugs”, a name that Moussa has been unhappy with for eight years.

Due to his investment and his dedication to the image of his restaurant, Moussa began to feel the name of the establishment was no longer relevant to the sort of business it had actually become, creating some confusion over exactly what sort of establishment it was. So he hired a local artist to redesign the logo and made plans to change the name to “Mugs”. The timing, however, was not right.

Five years ago, Moussa purchased the second Mugs and Jugs location on Missouri Avenue in Clearwater. When Moussa sold the 66th Street location in May 2008, he saw the opportunity to do something he had wanted to do for years, change the name. The location he sold will continue to bear the name “Mugs and Jugs”, despite no longer being owned by Moussa, while the current location on Missouri has become “Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar.”

“Although Hooters has done a wonderful job, we did not want to be a knock off of Hooters,” Moussa explains. The clientele of Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar is not limited to men. The customers include men and women, young and old, from all walks of life. “We are your every day eats for everybody,” says Moussa. Perhaps the success of Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar can be attributed to Moussa’s constant dedication to his business, and innovation. For instance, Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar was voted Best Wings In Tampa Bay by Tampa Bay Magazine. “No one will ever come close to it,” Moussa says of his wings recipe. They are made from scratch eGrand Prize Winner Patricia Keicher shows off her new grill - Photo by Simaen Skolfieldvery day and they’re never
frozen.

Their flavorful sauces are made in house. “I will never cut corners about my food,” he explains. During a surprise health inspection, his restaurant was awarded with an A.

Despite the change of name, this commitment to quality and service will continue. Moussa takes pride in his establishment, and is regularly on the restaurant floor; in fact he is on a first name basis with many of his customers. “I actually am glad to see people’s faces,” he says.

Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar will be giving away Tampa Bay Bucs tickets throughout the season. As part of the grand opening events, he raffled off a new grill, complete with steaks and a bottle of wine. Patricia Keicher, a Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar regular, was the excited winner.

Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar is located on Missouri Avenue in Clearwater. Mugs and Jugs on 66th Street is no longer owned by Moussa. To find out more about Abe’s Mugs Grill & Bar, visit their website at www.mugsonmissouri.com.

Read 2601 times Last modified on Thursday, 22 October 2009 15:41