Industry News | August 13, 2001

New Bowls at El Pollo Loco

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Irvine-based El Pollo Loco, creator of the Pollo Bowl®, announced today the debut of a tasty new addition to its bowl line-up -- the Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM).

Featuring all the flavor and appeal of nachos in the convenience of a bowl, El Pollo Loco's new Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM) piles plenty of the chain's famous hand-marinated, flame-broiled chicken over a generous helping of Spanish rice, tortilla chips and spicy pinto beans. Two kinds of cheese (Jack and Cheddar) are melted on top, and the bowl is served with onions and cilantro, sour cream and guacamole, delivering a satisfying meal for one or a delicious appetizer for several. Guests can choose to "combo'' their Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM), adding corn or flour tortillas and a 20-ounce beverage.

The Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM) offers a fun new way to enjoy El Pollo Loco's signature flame-broiled chicken. "Nachos have become a popular part of Southwestern cuisine, and our Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM) embraces the growing demand for these products,'' said Margaret Jenkins, vice president of marketing for El Pollo Loco.

"It's a convenient way to enjoy a favorite meal that's often difficult to manage. Plus, guests can personalize their Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM) with any combination of salsas from our salsa bar.'' El Pollo Loco offers four different salsas: Pico de Gallo, Avocado Salsa, Spicy Chipotle and El Pollo Loco's famous house salsa. All are prepared fresh every day.

Famous for chicken marinated in a secret blend of herbs, spices and fruit juices and then flame-broiled to perfection, El Pollo Loco has provided a fresh, wholesome alternative to traditional fast food since 1975, serving its chicken hot off the grill with warm tortillas, a wide variety of delicious side dishes and freshly prepared salsas.

In recent years, the chain has broadened its menu and created new and more portable ways to bring its flame-broiled chicken to consumers on the go. Pollo Bowls® have emerged as a popular choice. Bowls now account for approximately 14% of El Pollo Loco's meal purchases.

El Pollo Loco introduced its first bowl creation, the Pollo Bowl®, in 1996. A full 20 ounces, it quickly became a hit. This signature bowl combines El Pollo Loco's flame-broiled chicken with Spanish rice and pinto beans, topped with onions, cilantro and salsa. The Smokey Black Bean Pollo Bowl, a twist on the original Pollo Bowl®, followed. Inspired by the success of its Pollo Bowls®, and looking for new ways to meet the growing demand for entree-size salads, El Pollo Loco introduced three Salad Bowls in 1999—the Flame-Broiled Chicken Salad Bowl, Southwest Chicken Salad Bowl and Mexican Chicken Caesar Salad Bowl.

El Pollo Loco's new Nacho Pollo Bowl(TM) will be communicated to consumers through a mix of point-of-purchase vehicles including translites and counter cards.