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more Popeye's!

  • z

i would have preferred more Pollo Campero's... Popeye's bought a bunch of locations out of a KFC bankruptcy. a creditor confirmed about the company what many of us thought about the food;

"The franchisee's main creditor, GE Capital, preferred the smaller Popeyes offer and expressed a palpable distrust of KFC in the Minneapolis courtroom of U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Nancy Dreher."


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  1. I guess that's a step in the right direction.

    7 Replies
    1. re: galewskj

      Is Popeye's good or just good in comparison to say...what I consider to be bad..like KFC?

      1. re: brlattim

        It's decent fried chicken, but it's not out-of-this-world fried chicken. Vs. KFC, it's head and shoulders better and the sides are much better as well.

        1. re: brlattim

          It's pretty much exactly like KFC, for comparisons sake.

          1. re: olyolyy

            Says who? KFC has nothing that compares to Popeye's spicy fried chicken. Of course they may bland it down for Minnesota, who knows?
            I really wasn't trying to be sarcastic. You never know what corporate thinks the people want.

          2. re: brlattim

            I like it much better than KFC, especially the spicy option. The biscuits are good, decent red beans and rice and the mashed potatoes have a somewhat spicy gravy with bits of green chile. KFC is bland, bland, bland in comparison.

            1. re: brlattim

              as others have said its not going to change your life, but as far as fast food joints go its good. much better than KFC.

              1. re: brlattim

                Next time you're near 35W and Lake in Minneapolis try it for yourself. Cash only though.

            2. I'm thrilled about this...basically echoing what justalex said. I think it is better than KFC (not worlds better, as mentioned), but the biscuits are awesome. Greasy as heck and delicious.

              Variety is always a good thing, people.

              1. It's on like donkey kong

                1. I don't get all the hate for KFC.

                  The sides are atrocious, I'll give you that. But KFC is the undisputed world champion of fried chicken, and for good reason. I'll take a bucket of KFC over a bucket of ANY other fried chicken every single time.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Freeze666

                    I don't "hate" KFC, I'll have occasionally since theres one very close to my house...but I have to agree with some of the others that Popeye's is better right down the line...including their fried chicken.
                    KFC is "ok" (except for the "extra crispy", which is usually not very good at all).
                    In truth, the hot food bar at the local ShopRite supermarket actually does fried chicken much better than any at KFC.

                    1. re: Freeze666

                      I don't hate KFC, but I strongly disagree that they are the undisputed world champion of fried chicken FOR GOOD REASON. *If* they are the world champion, it is for the same reasons that Mcdonalds is the world champion of hamburgers.

                    2. The KFC signs and "awnings" were coming down yesterday morning on Lexington and University in St. Paul.

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: dc1515

                        I was wondering if that was one of the one's that was closing. It's funny, because Hubster and I have said for years that a Popeye's in that location would kill! We shall see if we were right.

                        1. re: Seige

                          Seige, did you know that Trung Nam bakery (6 blocks from there) was a Popeye's back in the early-mid 90s?

                          1. re: MSPD

                            And back in thise days both Popeye's locations were owned by....Dr. John Najarian.

                        2. re: dc1515

                          Went by the Lex and University site yesterday and it had a new paint job. It was kind of yellow -orange. Is that Popeye's or Pollo Campero colors? Anyone know what's going in there?

                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                              Didn't really look like either of those. I guess they would have to work with the building that's there though.

                              1. re: chazmo

                                You know, our Popeye's is pretty old. Maybe it looks more like a newer popeyes? http://quickserveleader.com/article/p... And like you said, of course, within the constraints of the existing building of course.


                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                  I found the scoop online. Was hoping for Pollo Campero, but Popeyes wouldn't be too bad:

                                  A total of 14 Kentucky Fried Chicken fast food outlets in California and another 14 in Minnesota shut their doors for the final time Saturday, Nov. 10, including two stores in Redding, one each in Anderson, Chico, Oroville, Yuba City, Linda and 7 in the Bakersfield area including one in Taft.

                                  The franchisee-operated stores have been purchased by AFC Enterprises Inc. of Atlanta, a franchisor and operator of Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen restaurants. After remodeling and refurbishing, the stores will re-open in two to five months as Popeye’s restaurants, company officials said.

                                  1. re: nancyd

                                    Yes, that's pretty much the same info as in the OP.


                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                      Thanks TDQ. I'm going to start paying attention to the original posts.

                        3. If the KFC on Lake and Chicago turns Popeye's, I hope they can maintain their signage "all white orders 10% more." I love that little sign.

                          11 Replies
                          1. re: MplsM ary

                            Never noticed that sign, but that location of KFC is closed as of Sunday.


                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                              The Richfield KFC (at the Hub shopping center at 66th and Nicollet) is also closed.

                              1. re: Jordan

                                As is the Rice Street location near Larpenter

                                1. re: mikemcg62

                                  Brooklyn park and Crystal are also closed. Weird that this hasn't been moved to the Chains board.

                                  1. re: Bobannon

                                    KFC at Cedar and Cliff in Eagan is closed ...

                                    1. re: bohemianclub

                                      Another siting - Chaska KFC on Yellow Brick Road appears to be closed.

                                      1. re: justalex

                                        This just in! The KFC on County Road 10 just west of 35W in Moundsview. They were taking down the big KFC sign a couple of hours ago. We must be getting close to 14 by now.

                                        1. re: FrankPierce

                                          Add the one on Central, just south of 694, to the hit list.

                                          1. re: BigE

                                            Hwy 42 and 13 in Savage closed a week ago Sunday. It is an A&W also, I imagine it will be Popeye's only because of the small size.

                                            1. re: BigE

                                              Check that...I got bad intel on this one. Central/50th Columbia Heights KFC is still open.

                                  2. re: Jordan

                                    No idea what's happening at the Richfield (66th & Nicollet) location. They painted the building and put up a temporary "Louisiana Kitchen - coming soon" sign. There was plywood over the windows during the winter, but that came off a few months ago.

                                    The temporary sign is falling apart, and there's no sign of workers in the building. No Dumpster or trucks outside. Patch reported they were hoping for a July opening, but I don't see that happening.

                              2. In reference to the original poster's comment about wishing they would be more Pollo Campero's... I recently visited the one and only location on Robert Street and was impressed. If only all fast food was this good. I had the chicken tacos. Meat was tender and had a little zing, toppings were fresh, I think it had Cotija cheese? Sides were unique and a nice change of pace. I tried the campero beans (yum) and the fried yucca which was like breaded glue but oddly, I liked it! I will be back.

                                1. I happen to like KFC original fried chicken but when we buy fried chicken we pay six bucks for an 8 piece bucket at Cub rather than the fortune KFC charges these days.

                                  1. The old KFC in Highland Park is now a Sakana Sushi and Asian Bistro (The sign, at least, is going up today; it is likely not yet open.) I didn't think a Popeye's would play well in Highland.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: ChancesR

                                      Glad to hear of some progress on that, finally! It seems like forever. I wonder if they'll have a drive through? Wouldn't that be a hoot? And I wonder if they'll have ramen! ETA: Ramen, not likely based on the menu for the Wayzata location. http://www.sakanamn.com/


                                    2. Here's a discussion in the chains topic on Popeye's vs. KFC. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/880462


                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                        Drove by the one on University and Larpentuer hoping to see at least the Popeye's signage installed. Painted like a Popeyes but that is it, still sitting.

                                      2. I don't know.. I don't think Popeye's is coming to town. The one on University and Lexington has been sitting for 3 months now with no work done on it. The location in Rosemount was to become a Popeye's is now for sale. Maybe the deal did not work out.. too bad to hear.

                                        17 Replies
                                        1. re: sdalton29

                                          The one in Mounds View (Hwy. 10/35W) looks pretty well changed over, but hasn't opened yet. I'll drive by it again tomorrow, so we'll see where it's at.

                                          1. re: BigE

                                            The Crystal location has had a lot of work too and the Crystal Shopping Center sign says "Popeye's coming soon!"

                                            1. re: Bobannon

                                              Bobannon and BigE,

                                              Glad to see your replies. Sounds like we will be seeing some more PopEyes in the TCs. I will see if the one on Lexington and University has put up a "Coming Soon" sign.

                                            2. re: BigE

                                              I drove by a former Kentucky Fried Chicken location on Rice Street and Larpenter in St. Paul and it had a sign saying Popeye's was coming soon. The former Kentucky Fried Chicken location on County Road 10 in Mounds View has a for sale sign and does not appear to be destined to become a Popeye's location.

                                              1. re: John E.

                                                The Richfield one (66th & Nicollet) has a coming soon sign. Patch reported that they'll open in the spring.

                                                1. re: Jordan

                                                  I drove by Richfield last week and there was a Louisiana Chicken cafe sign on the building.

                                            3. re: sdalton29

                                              The one in Eagan at Cliff and Cedar has a for sale sign posted . . .

                                              1. re: sdalton29

                                                The one in Brooklyn Center seems also to have halted progress.

                                                1. re: kevin47

                                                  Ditto for the location off I-94 & White Bear Ave S. It was painted a couple months ago but now its boarded up and stalled out.

                                                  1. re: NugarifiK

                                                    The one on 92nd? and Lyndale in Bloomington and the Coon Rapids location on Northdale both have the Popeye's Louisiana Kitchen logos up. Moundsview was painted but has a For Sale sign out front.

                                                2. re: sdalton29

                                                  timely article in the pioneer press! looks like they are still on, just maybe not all the old KFC locations


                                                  1. re: puddin head

                                                    Strange that they mention the Cleveland Ave location in St. Paul as being "one of the affected" locations, but don't bother to mention that it's already up and running...as Sakana Sushi.


                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                      You are expecting the news reporters to do some research.. that is way too much work when they can publish a story they read from a press release.

                                                      1. re: sdalton29

                                                        Yeah, I guess. :) But, he went to the effort to single out the 4 St. Paul locations (as, of course, it's the St. Paul paper), but I guess he couldn't be bothered to ask them specifically about those or maybe even drive by them to see the status.


                                                      2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                        Ha! He corrected his article. I guess Chowhound scumming works. LOL

                                                        1. re: Seige

                                                          Too funny! Although, he may not have gotten that from us. Someone noted in the comments that the Cleveland Ave location was Sakana sushi... She also notes that the sushi is "excellent." I'm kind of curious, now, to find out if she's right.


                                                      3. re: puddin head

                                                        This article also says Crystal and Brooklyn Park are already open. They aren't. I drove my Crystal last night and BP on Wed and neither are open.

                                                    2. I saw one on 28th near Chicago about a month ago in place of the sleazy KFC that had been there. It was painted yellow and a sign just said opening soon. There seems to be a lot of interest in this, I wonder why the company that owns them is being so coy about when and where the stores will be open.

                                                      3 Replies
                                                      1. re: steamer

                                                        Not sure why.

                                                        The Richfield store on 66th at the Hub has been dormant for a while. There is zero work being done to it, as evidenced by the lack of any tire tracks indicating a construction vehicle working on the inside.

                                                        I'd rather see them do something with that location, like Aida did with the old Taco Bell down the road....but I'm sure that fried chicken does decent across from a highschool

                                                        1. re: GutGrease

                                                          Maybe they are basing how many locations to finish up and open on whether they have to pay $7.25 or $9.00 minimum wage.

                                                          1. re: GutGrease

                                                            Yeah -- I drove by Richfield again today. It's been painted yellow, and a temporary "Louisiana Kitchen Coming Soon" sign is up. There's plywood over the windows, but it doesn't look like anything else is being done right now.

                                                          1. re: bohemianclub

                                                            I just logged in to say essentially the same thing...I drove by Brooklyn Park tonight at 9:30 and there were about 10 cars in the drive thru line,...there was actually a traffic jam trying to get in and out. I decided to wait until the excitement dies down. Crystal still isn't open.

                                                            1. re: Bobannon

                                                              I drove by again on Sunday and there was another huge traffic jam at Popeye's Brooklyn Park. Then last night when I went to Target, I noticed they had actually hired people to manage the traffic! There were about 15 cars in line. I didn't realize there was so much love for Popeye's in BP. It's not that far to Lake Street.

                                                              1. re: Bobannon

                                                                Novelty, I think, is part of it. There were big lines at Krispy Kreme and Sonic when they first arrived, and look at them now.

                                                                And as I measure it, it's at least 20 minutes from BP to Lake Street, maybe longer during dinner/rush hour. Popeye's is not worth a 40-50 minute round trip, IMHO.

                                                                1. re: steve_in_stpaul

                                                                  Yes, I totally agree. I was shocked when I saw the closed Sonic in West St. Paul that was only a couple years old. Sonics in the South will close, only to reopen even bigger!!

                                                                2. re: Bobannon

                                                                  I remember Popeye's was doing a promotion a few years ago and were selling an 8 piece 'bucket' of fried chicken for $4. There was general outrage when it was discovered that the only local Popeye's franchise, on Lake Street, was not participating in the national promotion. People called the police they were so outraged. There was television news coverage. People complained that they had taken taxis to get to Popeye's for the chicken promotion or that they changed buses three times just to get there. I'm not surprised at what is happening in Brooklyn Park. I am sure that what happened on Lake Street a few years ago had something to do with why it was decided to buy 14 KFC locations out of bankruptcy and replace some of them with Popeye's locations.

                                                                  1. re: John E.

                                                                    My guess is that the BP location was already doing healthy business and didn't _need_ to participate in the promotion.
                                                                    That's their prerogative...after all, such promotions are designed to drum up business where it may be lacking.

                                                                    1. re: The Professor

                                                                      The BP location did not yet exist at the time of the promotion which I described.

                                                            2. Drove by the building that purportedly will be a Popeye's off White Bear and Suburban. The forever full dumpster has been emptied and there was a truck parked there today. What is taking them soooo long...

                                                              3 Replies
                                                              1. re: ssioff

                                                                The corner of Lexington and University is all Popeyes orange when I passed it today.

                                                                1. re: docfood

                                                                  That one has been orange for a while now. But I did notice contractor's trucks there Monday, including one for the sprinklers and venting.

                                                                  1. re: docfood

                                                                    Is this one open yet? It looked lit up and active yesterday though I might have just seen personnel cars.

                                                                2. I don't see it mentioned, so I'll report that the location just south of Maplewood Mall (on Beam, a block east of White Bear Ave) has been up and running for a month or two.

                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                  1. re: BigE

                                                                    I went to this location in April. It had been a few years since we had Popeye's chicken. I won't be going back anytime soon. It took more than 20 minutes to get an 8 piece spicy chicken to me.

                                                                    1. re: John E.

                                                                      To be fair, it probably took you 10 minutes just to get into the parking lot didn't it? That place has been crazy busy every time I've driven by. I'm not saying it's right for it to take 20 minutes, but I have to wonder if they were prepared for the onslaught once they opened. I drive by almost everyday and still can't believe the lines at peak times. Reminds me of when people waited an hour or two for Kripy Kreme in Maple Grove.

                                                                      1. re: Db Cooper

                                                                        We got lucky and parked right in front. I think the reason we had to wait is because most people were ordering the regular chicken and I ordered spicy (I don't see the point in getting chicken from Popeye's if it's not spicy).

                                                                        My brother and SIL actually drove 30 minutes to sit in line for 2 hours at the MG Krispy Kreme. I happened to be driving by sometime later, went to the counter and ordered two. They brought out two boxes and I said "no, just two doughnuts". I still don't know what the fuss is about. I believe any glazed doughnut hot out of the oven is just as good.

                                                                      2. re: John E.

                                                                        My one visit was at ~2pm on a weekday and I got a 4 piece. From the time I paid, I was driving away in 2-3 minutes.

                                                                        1. re: BigE

                                                                          I understand that 5p on a Saturday is probably the busiest they get. The biggest reason I won't return soon is because it is not at a convenient location. I also thought the spicy chicken was of only one spice note, cayenne.

                                                                      3. re: BigE

                                                                        The Popeye's on the NE corner of Lexington and University is open for business. Munching on a two-piece spicy with cole slaw as I write...

                                                                      4. The location on 10/35W across from the Mermaid is in limbo at best, and completely abandoned at worst. I drove by on Wednesday to see a still empty red faced building and a sale sign near the street.

                                                                        In happier news, the Beam Ave/Maplewood location is running smoothly with no more crazy lines. Hooray!

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: BigE

                                                                          That County Highway 10 location is for sale and is not scheduled to reopen as a Popeye's. I gues they did a traffic count and realized it might not be an easy location with which to make a profit.

                                                                        2. Now open at White Bear and Suburban.

                                                                          1. The Richfield location at the Hub (near Rainbow) has a lot of activity lately. I can see that they've installed lights so I would guess that it'll be open before the end of summer. The one on Lyndale in Bloomington seems to be on the same schedule

                                                                            1. Is it just me or is Popeye's using much smaller chickens now? I just had a five piece yesterday and every piece looked like it was half again smaller than what I recall. This is my first visit to Popeye's since the KFC-->Popeye's conversion. My visit was to the Popeye's I've always gone to at Lake & Pleasant in Mpls. They at least accept credit cards now!

                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                              1. re: Vrooman

                                                                                I've only been to Popeye's a couple of times (and *years* ago at their Lake St. location) and never thought their chickens were a different size than KFC's -- and I long wondered where KFC got those Rock-Cornish-Hen-sized chickens...

                                                                                1. re: Vrooman

                                                                                  It's not just you; they are clearly using the smallest chickens available. I moved here from the south where I was a loyal Popeye's customer. I was sooo excited to see that they were expanding here, but after eating at the Lexington/University location a handful of times, I am deeply disappointed. The chicken pieces are so small that you end up with mostly skin and bones. They may have increased their margins using smaller birds, but they lost a loyal customer in me.

                                                                                  1. re: cabanaboy

                                                                                    Being from San Antonio
                                                                                    I can also say the
                                                                                    Chicken is smaller, but I think it is more about having to pay the higher costs up in MN.

                                                                                2. Since the thread got resurrected, I'll just add that there is finally real work going on at the Eden Prairie location. I think this must be one of the last to be converted. Not open yet, but the signage is up and the plywood is off.

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: Lincster

                                                                                    The one in Richfield has been open for a few months. I tried it out of desperation one time for dinner. The chicken was tasty, but very greasy and didn't distinguish itself in any positive manner. I haven't been back since but that's just because I rarely eat out.

                                                                                  2. The one on Chicago just North of Lake Street is open, but it's just as easy to go to Los Ocampo or Midtown Global Market. Well, not "just" as easy because those don't have drive thru, but almost!