The launch of KTA Express grocery store in Kona includes another launch, a new concept from L & L called Mixed Plate. Pacific Business News editor in chief A. Kam Napier has more.
L&L Hawaiian Barbecue has been quietly testing a new concept called Mixed Plate in a stand-alone location near the Honolulu International Airport. It features a hot line, much like a Panda Express, where people pick and choose their ideal mixed plate. Now it’s debuting the concept in a new format — as the in-house restaurant for a grocery store.
It opens next month within the KTA Express Kealakekua store, on the Big Island. That store is KTA’s first new location in nearly 30 years. The 13,000-square-foot store is located in the former Kamigaki Market building.
Bryan Andaya, chief operating officer of L&L, says it’s a mutually beneficial relationship for both brands, with each drawing foot traffic for the other. And it was a sort of homecoming for him as well. Andaya, originally from the Big Island, was approached by a former high school classmate, who now works at KTA, about a year ago to explore the idea of the two brands working together.