By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Nov 02, 2004 at 1:40 PM

Milwaukee restaurateur John Vassallo is getting ready to serve up your morning cup of joe. Johnny V., as he's become known, expanded his presence in "Mowaukee" in March with the purchase of Grenadier's, the once-popular upscale restaurant Downtown. In less than six months, he's made the new place, Moceans, into one of the best-reviewed seafood restaurants in town.

Recently, Vassallo transformed his Mo's Market into a casual Italian dining spot, Mo's Cucina. And now, OMC has learned from a prominent Downtown source, that Vassallo will open Mocha - A Coffee Bistro, a coffeehouse, on the site of the recently closed DOC Optical at 124 W. Wisconsin Ave., across from his Mo's Irish Pub. 

Vassallo opened Mo's -- A Place for Steaks on Plankinton Avenue in 1999, at a time when most of the power structure in town was still pessimistic about the neighborhood and its ability to sustain upscale, quality development.

Calls to Vassallo were not immediately returned, but watch OMC for more on this new Downtown development, including an in-depth interview with Johnny V. coming next week.