Customers still crowing about chicken sandwiches at Popeyes

DOVER — If you missed the cars spilling out from the drive-thru onto U.S. 13 at Popeyes in Dover this week this is your warning that the chicken sandwich that has gone viral is back.

The sandwich was originally released in August but, because of a jaunt through social media channels that included pitting it against fellow fast-food chain Chick-fil-A, quickly sold out and the sandwich was removed from the menu temporarily.

It returned to stores on Sunday.

The craze reached a sour note on Monday when a man who had been cutting in a line for chicken sandwiches at a crowded Popeyes restaurant in Maryland was stabbed to death by another customer who confronted him, police said.

On Wednesday the line at the Dover fast food chain was occasionally stretching out of the door as people arrived for lunch. The drive-thru was to be closed until 7 p.m. and the sandwiches were limited to three per customer in an attempt to preserve supply.

John Roisland, of Dover, hadn’t even had the sandwich yet but waited in line for 20 minutes to taste it for himself.

“I was out and about and didn’t get it last time, so I decided to try and get it this time,” he said.

He attributed the hype to the fact it’s probably just a good sandwich.
“Nothing crazy,” he noted.
Jordan Thomas, of Felton, was back for the second time this week.

“It’s really good, better than Chick-fil-A. It’s crunchier, and way better quality,” he noted.

He added that he waited in line 30 minutes for the first sandwich, and about 10 minutes on Wednesday.
His take: “Worth it. It’s just really good. Everyone should try it.”
Kenny Malone, of Dover, was also a return customer.

“I had it before; the first time was before it went viral,” he said, noting that it was OK. “The second time, I think the buzz made it better. The spicy sauce made it better.”

He attributed the fascination about the sandwich to the comparison being made to Chick-fil-A.
“You have to compare, see who the king is,” he said. “Both are good, and I love Chick-fil-A, but this is really good. It’s neck and neck.”

Nye Wright, of Smyrna, was already running late on her lunch break, thanks to the long line.
“They said it’s OK, as long as you bring me one back,’” she said of her coworkers.
Like others she was drawn to the sandwich because of the hype that surrounds it.
“I went to maybe 10 [Popeyes] last time, even to Maryland, but missed it,” she said.
On social media, consumers were less enamored with the viral sandwich.
“Couldn’t care less!” Patricia Kasik Kaiser said in the discussion on the Delaware State News Facebook page, seeking reaction to Popeyes menu item.
“It doesn’t look like anything to write home about,” added John Daliani. “…what am I missing?”
Nicole Michele noted that while it’s tasty, “not for all this foolishness.”
“It’s a nice piece of chicken, more homemade looking than any other fast food place … best I have had so far but it won’t last, I was lucky I got it before the hype. Usually because of the demand the quality goes downhill and this was no different. I had the original the first go around and the spicy this time and it wasn’t as good,” she continued.
Nikki Robinson Wilson noted, “No chicken sandwich is worth fighting/being killed over. Is this what the world has come to?”

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