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Love of anime inspires family-run Florida restaurant chain Soupa Saiyan

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Manage episode 389260967 series 2988872
Content provided by ClickOrlando.com and Graham Media Group, WKMG, and Graham Media Group. All podcast content including episodes, graphics, and podcast descriptions are uploaded and provided directly by ClickOrlando.com and Graham Media Group, WKMG, and Graham Media Group or their podcast platform partner. If you believe someone is using your copyrighted work without your permission, you can follow the process outlined here https://player.fm/legal.

A family’s shared love of anime has grown in three restaurants serving up ramen, pho and other pan-Asian delicacies.

Soupa Saiyan first opened its doors in 2016 at 5689 Vineland Road, near Universal Studios in Orlando.

“It all started with my (brother-in-law),” Jimmy Chhun, the manager at Soupa Saiyan, said.”He loves food. He’s always wanting to create it. One day (he was) trying to figure out ‘What’s a good way to have like a soup-themed restaurant.’ So when they were just watching anime, he sees Goku eating soup noodles (and said) ‘You know what, that’s what I’m gonna call it.’”

Soupa Saiyan is themed on the wildly popular Dragon Ball anime. The name Soupa Saiyan is a reference to the show in which several of the main characters come from an alien race called Saiyans who can power up and become Super Saiyans.

The restaurants stand out, as they are heavily decorated with Dragon Ball-themed toys, statues and art. However, they didn’t start out that way.

“Everybody coming in here loving it. Even when we started, we started off with very small figures and artwork and then everybody started donating art,” Chhun said.

The menu came from a blending of cultures. Chhun said his brother-in-law’s family is Lao while his wife, Chhun’s sister, is Vietnamese.

“So we put that together — combined it,” he said.

Chhun said the Dragon Ball theming helps to bring people in, but added that it is the food that keeps people coming back.

“It’s just what’s in our broth,” he said. “Our soup cooks for about 12 to 15 hours — savor the flavor. Everybody loves it and you can build it the way you want it here.”

Despite the growth of Soupa Saiyan, success did not come overnight.

“(My brother-in-law) was just doubting (himself),” Chhun said. “I’m like, ‘No, you give it a shot.’ Then after like a couple of months later he’s like, ‘We just started blooming.’”

Chhun was living in Utah when Soupa Saiyan first opened. He was invited to come to Florida to help out with the business about five years ago. Since then, two additional locations opened — Soupa Saiyan 2 in Jacksonville and Soupa Saiyan 3 near the University of Central Florida, which is the location Chhun manages.

“The college kids there love it. The artwork and everything,” Chhun said.

On the latest episode of Florida Foodie, Chhun shares more about how Soupa Saiyan has grown over the years. He also shows off some of the most popular menu items.

Please follow our Florida Foodie hosts on social media. You can find Candace Campos on Twitter and Facebook. Lisa Bell is also on Facebook and Twitter and you can check out her children’s book, “Norman the Watchful Gnome.”

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

  continue reading

131 episodes

Artwork
iconShare
 
Manage episode 389260967 series 2988872
Content provided by ClickOrlando.com and Graham Media Group, WKMG, and Graham Media Group. All podcast content including episodes, graphics, and podcast descriptions are uploaded and provided directly by ClickOrlando.com and Graham Media Group, WKMG, and Graham Media Group or their podcast platform partner. If you believe someone is using your copyrighted work without your permission, you can follow the process outlined here https://player.fm/legal.

A family’s shared love of anime has grown in three restaurants serving up ramen, pho and other pan-Asian delicacies.

Soupa Saiyan first opened its doors in 2016 at 5689 Vineland Road, near Universal Studios in Orlando.

“It all started with my (brother-in-law),” Jimmy Chhun, the manager at Soupa Saiyan, said.”He loves food. He’s always wanting to create it. One day (he was) trying to figure out ‘What’s a good way to have like a soup-themed restaurant.’ So when they were just watching anime, he sees Goku eating soup noodles (and said) ‘You know what, that’s what I’m gonna call it.’”

Soupa Saiyan is themed on the wildly popular Dragon Ball anime. The name Soupa Saiyan is a reference to the show in which several of the main characters come from an alien race called Saiyans who can power up and become Super Saiyans.

The restaurants stand out, as they are heavily decorated with Dragon Ball-themed toys, statues and art. However, they didn’t start out that way.

“Everybody coming in here loving it. Even when we started, we started off with very small figures and artwork and then everybody started donating art,” Chhun said.

The menu came from a blending of cultures. Chhun said his brother-in-law’s family is Lao while his wife, Chhun’s sister, is Vietnamese.

“So we put that together — combined it,” he said.

Chhun said the Dragon Ball theming helps to bring people in, but added that it is the food that keeps people coming back.

“It’s just what’s in our broth,” he said. “Our soup cooks for about 12 to 15 hours — savor the flavor. Everybody loves it and you can build it the way you want it here.”

Despite the growth of Soupa Saiyan, success did not come overnight.

“(My brother-in-law) was just doubting (himself),” Chhun said. “I’m like, ‘No, you give it a shot.’ Then after like a couple of months later he’s like, ‘We just started blooming.’”

Chhun was living in Utah when Soupa Saiyan first opened. He was invited to come to Florida to help out with the business about five years ago. Since then, two additional locations opened — Soupa Saiyan 2 in Jacksonville and Soupa Saiyan 3 near the University of Central Florida, which is the location Chhun manages.

“The college kids there love it. The artwork and everything,” Chhun said.

On the latest episode of Florida Foodie, Chhun shares more about how Soupa Saiyan has grown over the years. He also shows off some of the most popular menu items.

Please follow our Florida Foodie hosts on social media. You can find Candace Campos on Twitter and Facebook. Lisa Bell is also on Facebook and Twitter and you can check out her children’s book, “Norman the Watchful Gnome.”

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

  continue reading

131 episodes

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