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Maximo’s in Watertown: not health food, healthy options

Maximo’s barbecued chicken panini, the Perkins, with a side of Southwestern quinoa salad.

Photos by Wendy Maeda/Globe staff

Maximo’s barbecued chicken panini, the Perkins, with a side of Southwestern quinoa salad.

Opening a new restaurant is always chancy. Phillip Zeller just celebrated his first year in business. “Making it a year in the midst of a recession,” says Zeller, chef-owner of Maximo’s in Watertown, “we’re pretty proud of that.” For the next year, when customers mention the Perkins School for the Blind on Mondays, Zeller will donate 5 percent of that sale to the school. He even renamed his Monday special, a barbecued chicken panini, the Perkins sandwich ($7.99).

Maximo’s specializes in “not health food, but healthy options,” which include Southwestern quinoa and sauteed spinach ($2.99), or a turkey burger with tabbouleh and goat cheese ($7.99). If you’re not concerned with calories, try the Slammin’ BLT with a fried egg ($6.49). “Some people have it three times a week,” says the chef.

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Customers also get a chance to share in another of Zeller’s enthusiasms. One wall is covered with autographed pictures of blues musicians he met while managing the House of Blues in New Orleans. “I’m a music fan and a frustrated musician — I tried to learn guitar for 20 years,” he says. “These guys had some fantastic stories that you don’t necessarily get to read in
Rolling Stone.” Maximo’s, 584 Mt. Auburn St.,
Watertown, 617-744-5499,
www.maximostakeout.com.

LUCIA HUNTINGTON

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