photo by Bloomberg via getty images

That’s some high-end culinary work right there

Sammy Nickalls
February 07, 2018

We all have our fast food guilty pleasures: Taco Bell's Baja Blast, Burger King's fries, McDonald's apple pie. But that doesn't mean you want said apple pie pawned off as another restaurant's dish. That's why Yelpers are in a blaze over one restaurant using impostor fried chicken from Popeyes in one of its menu items. Grub Street reports that a Yelper took to the internet to leave Sweet Dixie Kitchen in Long Beach, California, a one-star review for using the chain's famous chicken in one of its dishes pretending like it’s their own.

User Tyler H. posted earlier this month after visiting the restaurant. "Before my friends and I got seated, we saw them quickly bring in two large boxes of Popeyes to the kitchen," the user wrote in the review.

In a beautiful but futile testament to positivity and hope, Tyler hoped that the chicken was just a nice snack for the restaurant's staff—but “alas it was not.” The good ol’ culinary adventurer ordered the chicken and waffles—which costs $12.95 dish, by the way—to purposely check out the chicken situation before inquiring about cooking methods to the server, who admitted that it was, indeed, prepared in a local Popeyes kitchen. Fortunately, Tyler's table was compensated for their meals, and although he himself found his waffles to be "hard as rocks," there were two out of the five total that "thought their food was ok or enjoyed it."

Sweet Dixie Kitchen opened in 2013 and prides itself on its message of “Stay local, be happy and always, eat well!” The restaurant doesn't consider their Popeyes alliance a dirty secret whatsoever. In a comment left on Tyler's review, owner Kimberly Sanchez said that the staff "PROUDLY SERVES" Popeyes spicy tenders, which they consider "the best fried chicken anywhere and from New Orleans." Oof.

Sanchez explained in the comment that the restaurant has the chicken delivered twice a day before going on to list other "locally made" foods they serve, such as farmers' market gumbo and homemade jam. (Not exactly the same thing, but sure.) "I love [the fried chicken] so much and ate a ton of it... So I serve it," Sanchez declared. "...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 a little help from our friends—and we don't want it any other way."

Courtesy of Yelp

Turns out they serve Popeyes with a side of sass. Sanchez's response was not taken well by other Yelp customers, such as Joshua F., who said he's "spent plenty of money at Sweet Dixie, but no more." "[Sanchez] blasted the Yelper for raising a very valid concern about the food he was purchasing," he said, adding that Sanchez's claim that she buys Popeyes directly from New Orleans "can't be true” and that the fast food chain likely isn’t happy about Sanchez’s decisions.

Sanchez took no time in responding to this review, too, claiming that just because they don't state they serve Popeyes on the menu doesn't mean they're not being "transparent." "We will continue our business the same way we have always done...And we will be glad to let you know which is just like we always have,” she wrote. She then took to the restaurant’s Facebook page to defend her actions further. 

This story effectively serves as a “what not to do” guide for any aspiring restaurant owner, so at least Sanchez gave us that.

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