The Mixx on the Plaza is getting a new look

The concept for the design of The Mixx South, set to open in Overland Park’s Hawthorne Plaza in late spring.
The concept for the design of The Mixx South, set to open in Overland Park’s Hawthorne Plaza in late spring. Clockwork

After nine years of operations just south of the Country Club Plaza, The Mixx is remodeling.

The locally owned, fast casual restaurant opened in late 2005 at 4855 Main St. in the Plaza Colonnade.

Owner Jo Marie Scaglia plans an “earthy, organic color scheme” with modern abstract KnollTextiles wallpaper, mid-century style seating, and new upholstery for the banquettes. She’s using high-quality, sustainable materials including new tile throughout the restaurant, recycled material from locally owned Ripple Glass for the seamless wrap-around counter, energy-efficient lighting, and the restaurant’s bathrooms will be remodeled.

“Clean and functional design but still comfortable. It has just had a ton of traffic and (the decor) was a little bit beyond its time when we opened. So we wanted to give our customers something new, fresh and updated,” Scaglia said.

She also incorporated customer feedback in some of the changes, including a new catering and order pick-up area, and a drop ceiling with sound-absorbing insulation to muffle the harder surfaces in the dining room. She also moved and enlarged the beverage station for better flow.

Most of the remodeling work is being done at night so the restaurant can be open during regular business hours. The work is scheduled to be completed by mid-March.

The Mixx has four stations — salads, soups, sandwiches and sauteed pasta. Customers walk down the counter to make their selections. The salad station offers a choice of “mix-ins” such as caramelized onions, fire roasted corn, fired capers, Kalamata olives, roasted red peppers and edamame, as well signature salads.

A year after opening, The Mixx expanded its Main Street location. In 2009, it opened a location in the Power & Light District. Its third location is set to open in Overland Park’s Hawthorne Plaza in late spring.

Hummus Bread and More on North Oak

Tucked into this little strip center by a tattoo parlor and a payday lending service, a tiny restaurant is hard to spot from bustling North Oak Trafficway.

But Hummus Bread and More is turning out some tasty Mediterranean cuisine while helping to support the owners and operators, a family that recently immigrated from Iraq.

Ali Bakr Ali, a Kurd from northern Iraq, grew up in the family’s restaurant business. He earned a bachelor’s degree in physics before moving to St. Louis in 2010 and then Kansas City a year later. His plan was to bring his family from Iraq and they would once again operate a restaurant together.

Meanwhile, he earned a master’s degree in business in 2013 from the University of Phoenix, and worked as a manager of The Elms Hotel & Spa in Excelsior Springs.

When his two brothers, two sisters and niece immigrated, he quit to open Hummus Bread and More at 4027 N. Oak Trafficway in late 2013. He knew he could draw customers with the Mediterranean grocery and bakery. But from the beginning he planned to transition it to a restaurant. In October 2014, he put in a couple of tables and hired a couple of servers.

In recent weeks he has phased out the grocery portion of the business to concentrate on the restaurant and catering operations. Menu items include chicken shawarma, falafel, lamb gyros, kubba, Kurdish pudding and baklava.

“We cook it fresh. We make the customer wait 10 minutes but it is fresh,” Ali said.

He also bought some equipment from the recently closed Bread for All Tandoori Naan Fresh Bread Café to expand his catering service and will add two favorites from that cafe — Greek salad and Arais — to the menu.

Restaurant openings & closings

▪ The Big Biscuit plans a late February or early March opening for its new Liberty restaurant at 840 S. Missouri 291.

▪ FooDoo, which opened in mid-2014 in midtown, has closed. The restaurant was described as a vegetarian “earth grill” and juice bar. Chef Carlos Mortera, a partner in the restaurant, said he will concentrate on his City Market venue called The Bite.

“I don’t think it was the right concept for the neighborhood,” Mortera said. “I want to establish the name of The Bite and keep going with that.”

He plans to open The Bite in the former FooDoo space at 3605 Broadway by mid-March. It will have an expanded menu, including family-style meals. He also wants to have a food truck version of The Bite running by this summer or fall.

▪ After nearly three years of operations, Westport’s Bread for All Tandoori Naan Fresh Bread Café has closed.

Owner Stan Yoder said his wife of 40 years has multiple sclerosis and he knew the time would come when he couldn’t be gone 8 to 10 hours a day, but would need to care for her full-time. That day has arrived and “it is a privilege to do so,” he said.

They met as preschoolers and they were high school sweethearts.

“She’s my sweetheart, my girl,” he said.