Restaurant Insider with Anne Lee: Zippy’sRestaurant Insider
April 2, 2023
Story By: Anne Lee | Photos by: Lawrence Tabudlo
ANNE LEE speaks with Zippy’s chef TREVOR LUKE
Since 1966, Zippy’s has been the go-to gathering place for local families. Whether picking up Zip Pac bentos to bring to the beach or dining in one of its 22 restaurants, this iconic Hawaii staple has been a favorite for generations. Its famous chili is so popular that it sells more than 100 tons every month!
What’s new and exciting are the monthly specials that it features, where customers can try new creations or old favorites for a limited time. I met with chef Trevor Luke at the Makiki location to try some of the April specials and learn more about what’s in store for Zipsters.
AL: Can you tell me about the April specials?
TL: Our April specials feature the following items:
• Garlic Miso Chicken Plate ($12.75 in Honolulu, takeout), available all day and at all locations
• Kanak Attack Pac ($15.95 in Honolulu, takeout), available Fridays in April at all locations
• Pork in Gochujang Sauce ($16.26 in Honolulu, takeout), available on Fridays at all locations
• 6-inch Guava Haupia Cake ($17.95 in Honolulu, takeout)
• Double Chocolate Coffee Cake Square ($2.85 in Honolulu, takeout)
AL: Does the weekly Friday special change monthly, and how do you come up with the specials?
TL: The Friday weekly specials do change monthly (or sometimes bimonthly). A lot of what we create depends on what ingredients we can get our hands on. Our research and development chef, Wayne, and I work closely on creating dishes that use local ingredients as much as possible and are delicious for our guests. For example, our beloved chili is made with 100% local beef; all of our saimin dishes are made with Sun Noodle saimin noodles, which are locally produced here in Hawaii; Sugarland Growers supplies our tomatoes; we buy local products such as Japanese cucumbers, green onions, papaya and eggplant, when available; and all the eggs used at our Zippy’s locations are local eggs, and we have supported Eggs Hawaii for many years.
AL: What is the most popular item that you sell daily?
TL: The most popular menu item is a toss-up between our Korean Fried Chicken Plate and our famous Zip Pac.
AL: How has the transition been with the Zipster Rewards program?
TL: Since transitioning to Zipster Rewards, I would say that it has been well received by our guests. We are starting to roll out exclusive Zipster offers, and starting this month, we’re rolling out a Zipster Rewards exclusive offer called “CheeHoo! Time.” Think of this as our version of a happy hour. From 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays throughout the month of April, Zipsters will earn double Zipcoins on every order placed. Consider this a little something extra to help get through the afternoon slump.
Starting April 3, we will also be rolling out new Zipster Rewards redemption items, including Grilled Cornbread (500 Zipcoins), Chili & Cheese Fries (1,000 Zipcoins) and Meat ‘n Eggs (1,750 Zipcoins).
AL: For those that have not signed up yet, can you tell us how to sign up for this program?
TL: To sign up for Zipster Rewards, go to zippys.com/rewards for detailed instructions and more information.
AL: What specials will be available for Easter?
TL: This Easter, we have a few specials that will be available only on April 8-9:
• Roast Turkey Plate ($16.10 Honolulu, takeout)
• Roast Turkey & Baked Ham Combo ($15.95 in Honolulu, takeout)
• Decorated Easter Haupia Cake ($27.50 in Honolulu, takeout), only available on Oahu
• Decorated Easter Donut ($2.45 in Honolulu, takeout), only available on Oahu.
Visit zippys.com/locations for more information on your favorite Zippy’s restaurant.