LIHU‘E — The proprietors of a popular Kapa‘a nightspot recently opened a second establishment at Kalapaki Beach.
Restaurateurs Mark and Candice Myers, owners of Trees Lounge, have opened Rocco’s Pizza in restaurant row of Harbor Mall. It’s Lihu‘e’s only independently owned and operated pizzeria, they said.
“Everyone loves a good slice of pizza, and a good pie is hard to come by,” Mark said. “We’ve been working with our chef to create a delicious recipe with fresh ingredients that will consistently satisfy our customers’ pizza cravings time and time again.”
Rocco’s is serving up pizza by the slice and made-to-order specialty pizzas concocted with its own chef-created signature sauce, East Coast style dough, whole fresh mozzarella and a variety of fresh toppings. The Meyers said they make everything from scratch.
“We’ve had a great response to the veggie,” he said, which is topped with olives, green peppers, mushroom and onion.
Although Trees Lounge is known for fierce cocktails, no alcohol will be sold at Rocco’s, Mark said, but folks are welcome to BYOB (bring your own beer), as long as it is consumed on the premises.
The Myers hope their Kalapaki locale will draw a variety of clientele, including cruise ship passengers, beach-goers and high school students. They also hope to draw some of Costco’s pizza lovers by offering slices starting at just $1 and no long lines.
“I’m meeting with the sports director of Kaua‘i High about sponsoring some events,” he said.
The pizzeria is located in Trader Joy’s former location. Trader Joy’s was only open for two months, Mark said, “but their loss turned into our gain.” The turnkey business only required about a $20,000 investment, including the purchase of a $4,000 pizza oven.
Add classic red walls, a casual ambiance and the smiling faces of six employees and you have Rocco’s.
“Rocco’s Pizza was a place we used to go to when we were kids in Michigan,” Mark said. Candice is originally from Ohio. They met in Kaua‘i, married about four years ago and went into business together shortly after.
They said the key to their success in their marriage and in their business is love.
“We both love what we do,” Candice said.
“We both bartend and love being at Trees and being together.”
Pizzas start at $14 for a 14-inch, $16 for 16-inch and topping are $2 each. Patrons will also find subs, salad and wings, all for $10 or less. The restaurant offers dine-in and carry-out. Mark said they soon might offer delivery to select areas.
Rocco’s is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and is located at 3501 Rice St. For more information, call 245-2266 or visit roccospizzakauai.com.
• Vanessa Van Voorhis, staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 251) or by emailing email@example.com.