Napoleon's Chili Napple

Napoleon’s Bakery (Zippy’s) NEW! Chili Napple, $1.40 each

While that could be a fitting name for an upcoming Adam Sandler movie, a mixed drink that can only be found in a dark-lit hostess bar on Ke’eaumoku street, the next door neighbor’s yappy little Poodle, a race horse, or a really bad (or good) memory you have about your ex, what we’re talkin’ about here is Napoleon Bakery’s new pastry-gone-savory Chili Napple.

Yes, the good folks at Zippy’s Napoleon’s Bakery think like I think: take a great, perfect-the-way-it-is idea (the Apple Napple; or in my case the Goteborg Musubi, as well as a number of other things) and put it back on the drawing board to further experiment with it in an effort to make something even greater. So we hope (knocks on splintered wood and crosses bloody fingers).

The Apple Napple is probably one of the greatest pastries to exist on planet Oahu… or so at least I think so. Here it is, that delightful gem in all of its crispy-golden-flaky, buttered and glazed, layered filo dough glory…

Napoleon’s Bakery (Zippy’s) Apple Napple, $1.47 each

Oh yeah. You know you want one. Just pasting that photo in this entry made me want one. As a matter of fact, I just finished one and I want one more! Behold the layer-upon-layer of flaky filo encapsulating what I think is just the right amount of apple filling…

The filo is so light and delicate, that even with just that amount of tangy-sweet, cinammon’y, gelatinous apple filling, it carries all the way throughout in a fantastic balance of flavor and texture sensation. That, along with the light sugar glaze drizzle-dried on top is an absolute winner. While I don’t smoke, I could use a cigarette after having an Apple Napple.

Could the same be said about Napoleon’s Chili Napple? Let’s see.

Napoleon’s Chili Napple

Notice the Chili Napple takes on a more rectangular, purse-like shape in comparison to the Apple Napple’s more traditional folded triangular “pie” shape. Also notice that instead of a sugar glaze topping, it has a swath of melted cheddar cheese.

See, now that we’re talkin’ a cheese topping, I can already see this going in all KINDS of directions in the filling department. Perhaps Mexican? With a filling that includes spicy-seasoned ground beef, refried beans, sour cream, tomatoes, olives and chopped Jalapenos. Or howabout a Pizza Napple? Or Napple’s Rangoon (crab and cream cheese)?

Of course we can’t just stop at cheese. The possibilities using this filo dough wonder are practically endless!

As you may recall, this isn’t the first time Zippy’s has gotten creative with Chili; their last creation being the well-received Chili Moco.

Getting back to the subject at hand, let’s take another peek inside this here Chili Napple…

Click image to view zoomed-out angle

Notice how thin the layer of Chili is at this particular center-cut area of the Napple. While I’ll partially attribute that to Zippy’s tight (no pun intended) portion control practices, this also serves the Chili Napple for better than for worse. In my experience biting into it, I can see too much chili filling causing the filo to become soggy and fall apart, leaving your with a plate below (or your lap, shirt or blouse) a messful of soggy-wet filo crumbs and Zippy’s chili gushed throughout your fingers. Not goods. As it is, the Chili-to-Filo ratio is just right.

So how does the Zippy’s Chili work with the delicate, crispy, buttery layered filo dough and cheddar cheese on top? Not bad. It takes a few bites to become accustomed to it. The butteriness of the Filo dough is the only issue: it’s a bit too rich to really, truly compliment the also-heavy meat-based chili filling. The zestiness of the chili also plays a little bit of a mind game, depending how your mind relates to your palate. It did a bit with me.

Here you see the chili (and a bean) oozing out after taking a bite…

Click for another delicious, appetizing view of chili oozing out of a Napple

I believe Napoleon also added cheese on top of his chili filling inside, which gives the overall Napple a somewhat pronounced cheeesyness to it, just like me.

When the boss came in this morning and said he brought Chili Napples, I stared at the box almost in disbelief and dismay at what danger lay inside…

Click image to see inside “the box”

But wait, we’re not done with it yet! Not leaving well enough alone, bent on improving what really didn’t need anymore fiddling with, he set out to top the effort of our friend Napoleon by topping the Chili Napple with, yes, you guessed it… more Zippy’s Chili! So he also picked up a side-order of Zippy’s Chili, sans the beans…

He then proceeded to top a Chili Napple with MORE chili! Plate and fork style…

Hmmm… name for this godforsaken monster on a plate, anyone? I’d simply call it the “Really Chili Napple”.

I tell ya’, he’s off his rocker. He spends WAY too much time playing HALO with his sons. Theoretically, this is kinda’ like topping an Apple Napple with a Cinnabon. Or having a steak along with your hamburger instead of fries. Or chasing a shot of Absolut with a Screwdriver, or vice versa. Well, you get the picture. But hey, you know what? I tried it and da’ buggah was way mo’ ono! She go! Think of the filo as “rice” (or whatever accompanying starch), albeit with a way different texture. The butteryness of the filo was still an a little of an issue, but the now-abundant chili pretty much masked it.  He said it kinda’ reminded him of Zippy’s Chili Burrito, which is one of his favorite menu items there.

Anyway, you gotta’ try it and judge for yourself (not with the chili on top, but go for that too if you like. Knock yourself out). If you already did, leave a comment share your opinion on it. Among our gang, we all agreed the Chili Napple was “not bad” to “pretty good”, teetering somewhere in between there. In some ways the combination works, in some ways it doesn’t. It’s really a toss-up.  At least it was good enough to eat more than just one (since we had enough for that). Mostly we’re glad we got to finally try it, although we wouldn’t buy it again. While the Chili Moco was a success, we have yet to see if the Chili Napple will also enjoy a “back by popular demand” advertising campaign several months down the road.

Now about my neighbor asking for a good name for her new toy Poodle…

The Tasty Island rating:

(2) Good. I’m glad I tried it. (Ono)


10 thoughts on “Napoleon's Chili Napple

  1. I’m not a big chili fan, so the Chili Napple doesn’t sound that great to me (now, if it was a Curry Naple, I’d be on the next plane over!).

    But that first picture of the Apple Napple, with the trail of glaze pointing the way to the escaped apple goo … that’s just art.

  2. I am alllllll about Zippy’s Chili and Apple Napples and I am so jealous that you got to try it. Is it going to be a limited time only thing? I hope not. And I would so totally top it off with more chili only b/c I can’t get enough of that stuff. I still can’t get into the island style of eating it with rice. Heh.

  3. I tried the Chili Napple last week and I was pleasantly surprised by it. Although the plastic looking cheese is kind of offputting.

    Also, it’s just as messy as regular Napples. Mmm…crumbs.

  4. Deb, looks like Nate spotted a Curry-filled pastry for ya’ at Times Supermarket! To be specific, the bakery in Times (at least at the Kahala location) is actually a Saint Germain (a Japanese bakery). They’ve got all kinds of savory pastries there. I’ll blog some later.

    Dina, I spoke with someone in charge at Napoleon’s Bakery, and she said the Chili Napple was brought to market in commemoration of Napoleon’s Bakery’s 25th anniversary for a limited time, while supplies last. She estimates they’ll have enough on hand for about another week from now, then all pau. She couldn’t say whether it will come back at a later time. Unless customers bang down the door demanding it, which I doubt.

    Marvo, I’m a major (new) fan of your review (“ew”) blog. You’re a riot! Da’ ‘kine make my stomach sore buss laughing!

    AJ, yeah, the filo really was fluffed-up on the Napples batch we had on this particular day. Of course its bulk is mostly air, but psychologically, you think you’re eating more than it actually is. They should make all food like that!

    Amy, I’m not a pastry chef, nor expert on desserts, but my guess is that Filo-based pastries aren’t the same as puff pastries such as Choux Creme (nor did I bother to Google for the correct info’!).

    Nate, hope you’re enjoying your time back home here. Be sure to check out Mana Bu’s and the Poke Bowl in Ward Farmer’s Market. Get the set-ups I blogged and you can’t go wrong. Oishii desu!

  5. Not wanting to eat cold chili, I carefully wrapped up my chili napple in foil before heating it up in my toaster oven. It was pretty good that way, though I think it would benefit from a bit more cheese.

  6. This scares me a little, but I am definitely intrigued and want to try it! Looks even better with extra chili on top. And I used to love chili burrito! I can’t believe I forgot about that! And the comparison to curry pie is definitely persuasive–I love the St. Germain’s one.

  7. As an Apple Napple lover, I couldn’t wrap my mind around the chili version. However, when you mentioned your boss dipping it into Zippy’s chili, I started drooling over the image of the crusty philo dough crunching in my mouth along with the zesto chili. Gotta go get a napkin, now.

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