January-February 2013 | UNLEASHED

UNLEASHEDJoel Olive and Rob Mulford, Owners of Mojo’sUNLEASHEDJoel Olive and Rob Mulford of Mojo's



Mojo’s brings plenty of bark and bite to the Salisbury dining scene

Written By: Nick Brandi | Photographer: Stephen Cherry

There is a widespread perception that for its ample population base and well-developed commercial footprint, Salisbury is woefully underrepresented when it comes to quality mid- and upscale eateries, with the three-plus-decade-old Market Street Inn as a glaring exception. Well, in January, the owner of that establishment, Rob Mulford, addressed the issue by opening Mojo’s smack in the heart of downtown, on E. Main Street.
“We wanted to add another nice restaurant to Downtown Salisbury that would complement Market Street Inn,” offered 
co-owner/executive chef Joel Olive, “but we didn’t want it to be quite the same thing.”
The result is that by contrast, Mojo’s is more laidback and approachable than Market Street and offers a simpler menu — though equally good and fresh, Olive hastens to add.
The vibe is decidedly urban-bohemian cafe, with loads of locally made (mostly abstract) artwork splashed all over the table tops, menus and, of course, on the brick-faced walls, which showcase acid-washed creations in copper that resonate in 
perfect harmony with the acid-washed floors. Overlooking the establishment’s 87-seat dining area, meanwhile, is a cool open kitchen, where Olive and sous chef Ben Tempel can work their own mojo while the bar area serves as host to 126 additional patrons.
When you’re perusing the menu entries, don’t expect to divine any conspicuous theme, save perhaps something that might fairly be dubbed “funky-eclectic,” which is well in keeping with the eatery’s “food with attitude” mantra. There’s everything from dips, wings and sandwiches to seafood, steaks and salads. For your first Mojo’s experience, Olive says, you may want to try the made-from-scratch brick-oven pizza, their signature spicy crab dip or the ballyhooed shrimp-and-grits dish, as each is emblematic of what’s different about Mojo’s.
In addition to lunch and dinner six days a week, Mojo’s has live entertainment every Wednesday, with open-mic nite on Thursdays. Also check out their monthly theme parties, which are open to the public.

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