By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Apr 14, 2023 at 11:02 AM Photography: MOXIE

There’s yet another bold, contemporary, strong female at the helm of MOXIE Food + Drink, 501 E Silver Spring Dr, Whitefish Bay.

Maria Graziano has officially been appointed head chef, a role which she earned through the creativity and promise she exhibited as she took on ad hoc leadership in the kitchen last year, taking on any number of pandemic-related challenges from food costs to inconsistent labor.

In her new role, she will lead the charge as lunch returns to MOXIE after a three year hiatus.

Chef Maria Graziano
Chef Maria Graziano

Graziano’s new menu, which will make its debut on Tuesday, April 18, features guests favorites like bourbon peach short rib sliders and the MOXIE burger. However, she has also added a number of additions, including a Waldorf chicken salad roll ($16), a mushroom melt featuring cremini and oyster mushrooms with truffle compound butter and artichokes ($15) and numerous salads including fruit and kale salad featuring kale, blueberries, strawberries, grilled peaches, avocado, blue cheese, toasted walnuts and champagne vinaigrette ($22).

Guests can also enjoy starters like seared scallops with English pea puree, watermelon radish, balsamic glazed pearl onions and lemon dill creme fraiche ($15); burrata with pesto, roasted red peppers, crisp capers and balsamic glaze ($14) or MOXIE’s popular bruschetta flights ($14).

Beginning April 18, lunch service will take place Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Reservations are available at

But that’s not all

The return of lunch service is just part of a larger vision which Arroyo and Greene hope will carry their restaurants forward.

“Restaurateurs across the country know very well how tough the industry is right now,” says Arroyo, “And how difficult it is to get back into the rhythm of operations that came to a stunning stop in March 2020. Everything has changed, and we have to let go of how we did things in

the past, while leaning into new ideas and initiatives that will carry restaurants forward under new conditions.” 

“We have launched ourselves into a sort of hyper-creative mode,” Greene adds. “And the time is right to design and aggressively pursue extensions to the business that better leverage the resources we’ve created while building the set of brands overall.”

That “hyper-creative” mode has prompted the launch of a Sunday Speakeasy, which will take place each week from 1 to 6 p.m. Positioned as a place to “Get social the old-fashioned way,” the Speakeasy offers guests (21+) an option for a casual Sunday afternoon hang featuring appetizers and bar service. 

Meanwhile, at Trouble and Sons, 133 E Silver Spring Dr., Arroyo and Greene have introduced “Lasagna and Lambrusco Wednesdays” and a weekly fish fry featuring Riverwest Stein beer battered cod or baked cod on Fridays from 5 to 9 p.m.

A new catering and events arm of the business is also in the works, along with an intriguing late night concept featuring live music, both debuting early this summer.

Meanwhile reservations will open on May 1 for a very special MOXIE’s Mother’s Day pop-up brunch on Sunday, May 14. 

“We’re introducing a lot of new things at both MOXIE and Trouble,” Arroyo said, “But excellent service and the guest experience are still at the top of our priority list in everything we do.”

Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host

Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club. 

When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.