Recently, a Yelp reviewer exposed a restaurant in Long Beach, CA for using Popeye’s chicken in a few of its dishes. That fact in itself would probably make for a drama-packed story, but after the reviewer posted about the chicken on Yelp, the restaurant responded with a twist and said it was proud of serving Popeye’s chicken.
This whole strange chicken saga began when a Yelper known simply as Tyler H. visited Sweet Dixie Kitchen and noticed one of the employees carrying a couple boxes of Popeye’s chicken back into the kitchen. He then ordered the chicken and waffles just to try out the chicken. In his Yelp review of the restaurant, which we found thanks to Mashable, Tyler H. said that the chicken did indeed taste like it had come from Popeyes. Not wanting to make unfair assumptions, though, he straight up asked his waiter how Sweet Dixie Kitchen cooks its chicken, and the waiter admitted that it was from Popeyes then comped his meal because he wasn't pleased with how it tasted.
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Lest you think the meal compensation was a the restaurant's way of getting Tyler H. to keep quiet about his scandalous chicken discovery, the owner of Sweet Dixie Kitchen, Kimberly Sanchez, actually responded to the Yelp review that detailed his whole strange experience. In her response, she publicly confirmed that the restaurant uses Popeyes chicken. She wrote, "Hi Tyler - We PROUDLY SERVE Popeyes spicy tenders- the best friend chicken anywhere and from New Orleans." That is a bold statement, and one that even those of us who really love Popeyes would probably disagree with.
After going a little bit deeper into why the restaurant uses the chicken and talking about where it gets its other ingredients, Sanchez concluded by writing, "So whatever to you and your little review like it was some great exposure- and whatever to you dude. We do what we do and bring Long Beach the best food - mostly made here but we always get by with a little help from our friends- and we don't want it any other way." Pretty defensive, no?
The response from the Sweet Dixie Kitchen seems to miss the point a bit. By not making it very clear that people are paying over $12 for a menu item made with chicken that comes from a fast food chain, it comes across like the restaurant is intentionally trying to trick its customers. Tyler S. pointed that out in his response to Sanchez's response, writing, "I challenge you to be honest with your customers...put it on your menu that you 'proudly' serve Popeyes chicken. You do this for coffee...why not for Popeyes chicken?"
Still it seems that Sanchez isn't budging on the issue. In her Business Owner bio on Yelp, she warned against taking the reviews seriously, saying, "There are nay sayers and true a..holes- who want to prove a point. Those aren't the useful reviews they are only vindictive. Please use yelp with a grain of salt." It does seem like she's going a bit far to defend her right to sell Popeyes chicken in her restaurant, but if nothing else this just further proves that Popeyes is surprisingly popular with people in the food biz.