Sunday, June 13, 2010

Maui Teriyaki

For those of you who have lived in Gainesville long enough, you may remember Maui Teriyaki. It used to be on the corner of University and 13th, which is now the depressingly empty lot of the bankrupt University Corners project. There is another location on Tower Road, as well as a location in Alachua proper. However, it has been several years since Maui Teriyaki was available in central Gainesville, where students and the majority of its residents are more likely to visit. Maui Teriyaki has recently opened a location on 34th street, south of Archer in the same shopping center as Hooters and Rolls n' Bowls. This review is based on that location, but it really goes for any of the three, as I have tried them all.


All of the Maui Teriyaki locations I have visited thus far have been relatively basic lunch counters with a small seating area. They were nothing special, but functional. This new location has done a great job making their eating area inviting. There are several nice decorations and the chairs are really comfortable. They reminded us of the chairs in the library; padded, roomy, and perfect for people who will be camped out there for a long time. I would actually study in there. The area is clean, spacious, and they keep their condiment area well-stocked.


At Maui Teriyaki, you order at the counter and then pick up your food when they call your name. On both of our visits, our food was prepared quickly and the people at the counter were very friendly. They are courteous and smile plenty, which makes a big difference in my book.


Maui Teriyaki has a simple menu. They serve rice bowls with veggies and your choice of meat in a teriyaki sauce. They also have "power bowls" for those who are watching their carb intake. These just have veggies and meat in sauce. Their most popular dish is the chicken teriyaki bowl. They also serve pork, steak, and tofu. This location is working on a salmon teriyaki dish as well. There are a few extras you can get, like egg rolls, salad or wings. You can also get yakitori, which is meat cooked on a skewer. They serve fountain drinks.


We always get the chicken teriyaki bowls and they are delicious. It's simple - meat, veggies, rice, sauce. They know what they're good at and they consistently do it well. They use dark meat chicken, so it is always moist with a small amount of char for flavor. They have regular and spicy teriyaki sauce, both of which are delicious and thick. No watery sauces here! Most of the time the vegetables include carrot, broccoli, and baby corn. I believe their "power bowl" has cauliflower, bamboo shoots, and water chestnuts (I just can't get myself to like water chestnuts). Maui Teriyaki serves a large amount of food. You can choose a small or large bowl. The small bowl feeds me (small female) 2 lunches or 1 big dinner. My husband gets the large bowl and it feeds him dinner with enough leftover for a small lunch the next day.


Maui Teriyaki has great prices. Each bowl runs from $6 to $8 and, as I said, it is plenty of food. They are also good about sending out coupons in the coupon books every Gainesvillian is always getting in the mail, so look out for those. We used a coupon that was 1/2 off one entree with the purchase of another entree, and our bill came out to just $11 for two!


7/10. Maui Teriyaki is delicious, and I highly recommend you try it for a quick bite to eat. They have a limited menu, but it's a great place to grab some fast, large amounts of tasty food at a great price.