Sunday, August 03, 2008

Popeyes Chicken and Biscuits - Santa Ana

Call it a reverse knee-jerk response, but when I saw this story about L.A.'s City Council's ban on new fast-food restaurants in South Los Angeles to combat obesity and the highest incidence of diabetes in the county, it made this blogger realize that he hasn't sunk his teeth into some Popeyes Chicken in a while.

And when one has such an epiphany, there's no better day of the week to have it than Tuesday. Tuesdays, as most people know, is when you can get the leg and thigh special for $1.29 at participating Popeyes.

Some folks may recall a time when gas prices were low and the Tuesday two-piece deal was $0.99. Those days are over.

Still, it's exactly this kind of discounting that has L.A.'s City Council worried. $0.99 Whoppers, Extra Value Meals, Taco Tuesdays; it's pricing that L.A.'s citizenry allegedly cannot resist, resulting in unhealthy eating behaviors.

Truthfully, if my own gluttony on that Tuesday night was any indication, then they are right to be concerned.

I ate two thighs and two drumsticks, reveling in the fat-laden, greasy-goodness, crispy-spicy-bubbled-battered-skin of it all. I poured packet upon packet of Lousiana hot sauce over each bite of chicken, despite the throbbing pain of my oil-slicked lips and the sweat downpour on my brow. I ate spoonful, after sopping spoonful of the beans and rice -- an unattractive mess of a side dish consisting of both starches mixed together, looking of vomit, but tasting of heaven.

I washed it all down with a tall, Super Big Gulp-sized serving of Coke. And in the early hours of the morning after my feeding frenzy, I would pay for my sins in ways I will not describe in a food blog.

Though, when it comes time again for me to contribute to my own obesity, (say, in about a month), there's no better place than the Santa Ana Popeyes to do so. This Popeyes is arguably one of the best managed fast-food joints in the county and one that The OC Weekly dubbed as "The Best Really, Really Clean Fast Food Restaurant".

Of course, obesity and diabetes is no joke. And while L.A.'s City Council has good intentions, one wonders when free will and moderation also became victims of cheap fast-food? Or was Tommy Lee Jones' character in Men In Black right when he said;

"A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it."

Popeyes Chicken and Biscuits
(714) 834-9709
1244 E. 17th St.
Santa Ana, CA 92701

Blake's Place - Anaheim*

*Special Thanks to Monster Munching location scout Cecile for this tip.


At 10:27 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I really like your blog i'm gonna add a link on mine-I JUST had Popeye's Tuesday!!

I saw the city council woman on TV rambling on about a NEED for healthierr choices,blah,blah-yes the Govt wants to control our diets.

At 11:28 AM, Blogger Wandering Chopsticks said...

There was a Dr. Phil special on America's obesity problems. This very, very large man asked how he could lose weight. Dr. Phil asked how often he ate at a fast food restaurant each week. 12. Umm, maybe that's why he's morbidly obese?

Remember that guy who sued KFC or was it BK? B/c they advertised they used fresh ingredients so he figured it was healthy enough to eat every day? Umm, no.

It's like the whole debate about how the poor are unhealthy because they can only afford to buy less perishable goods. Look, they don't have to buy organic or free range, but last time I checked rice and beans and fruits and vegetables were still less expensive than junk food.

Elmo! I'm a chubby food blogger and I blame you! It was your blog that got me food blogging. If I hadn't discovered your blog, I wouldn't have started mine. And if I didn't have a blog, I wouldn't be eating so much. I demand compensation. You must pay for my liposuction and tummy tuck.

At 4:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No honey on the chicken? No talk of their scrumptious biscuits with butter and MORE sweet sweet honey? You've disappointed me today, elmo.

At 6:06 PM, Blogger KirkK said...

Yum...Popeye's, one of my guilty pleasures.

At 7:22 PM, Blogger Diamond Dog said...

Great to see 2 great reviews from you on places that are not Mexican or Asian ;)!

I didn't know all that info you put in about Popeye's. I used to be a huge fan of KFC, but I dont think they actually fry the chicken there anymore. Remember when you used to walk by a KFC it used to smell like chicken for blocks? Now there is no smell. And the original recipe just doesnt taste the same. My theory is that its "rethermed" and not fried at at the locations.

Looks like you enjoyed Blake's place. Please post a link to more pictures if you have it. Do you now understand why I would get all pissed off when you would post the prices at those other BBQ places? Although its not the 10 buck prices you see in Texas, it seems close. I am really curious to find out of it compares to Texas/Oklahoma BBQ!

Diamond Dog - The World's First Food Blog Commentator

At 8:12 PM, Blogger digkv said...

Ha I must say elmo that you inform me so much of LA's restricting the food scene in their city first the banning of bacon hot dogs, the requirement of taco trucks to move, and now limiting fast food LA city council is crippling their food scene and it is so very sad. It really isn't the place of government to restrict people but rather to open up more available options.
Thank you for talking about Popeye's which makes some of the best fried chicken ever.

At 8:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I LOVE Popeyes and eat it at least twice a month when I'm going to school in Fullerton. My friends and I usually hang out at the Round Table next to the Santa Ana Popeyes, but I'm trying to talk them into seeing fried chicken as a social food as well.

I typically order myself a Drum/Thigh meal with mashed potatoes(or red beans and rice) and get their Tuesday special to go so I can eat it cold the next day.

I would feel bad about my semi-addiction, but there are guys who come in during Tuesday, lay out 14 pieces on some newspaper and eat the whole thing during one sitting. It is my hope that I will never get to that point, though I can't entirely blame them.

At 3:12 AM, Blogger DanGarion said...

Talking about Blake's Place. I think I was there at the same time you were Elmo! Friday the 25th for dinner on the patio? My wife saw someone taking pictures of their food and she was like "maybe they do what you do!" And then I started taking pictures of my food. Blake's is such a wonderful place I first went there 10 years ago when I was with an ex-girlfriend and we found their buy one get one coupon in he Pennysaver.

At 9:41 AM, Blogger Juliet said...

Your posts usually make my mouth water, but not this one. That's not a jab at your writing, which is as good as ever. But it is a jab at Popeye's. Not a fan of fried chicken. And Popeye's always gives a friend of mine the runs.

At 9:49 AM, Blogger Agi said...

Great blog, man. I tried the lomo saltado at Peruvian Kitchen last week - delicious!

Have you thought about labeling your posts in blogger? This would be a great way to categorize posts by cuisine type, although it would be a pain in the ass to label five years of posts...

At 2:18 PM, Blogger inland empire restaurant and food reviews said...

Instead of eliminating fast food, they should create mandatory exercise programs. Its not the food as much as the lack of activity. But I guess thats just taking away another freedom.

At 2:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been eating at Popeye's for maybe once a month, or at least once every other month, since high school. I love their spicy chicken and the red beans and rice and the biscuits with honey squeezed onto them. This is gonna sound crazy, but I had no idea whatsoever that they had Louisiana hot sauce in packets! All these years and I had no clue! My excuse for this is that I mostly do drive through at Popeye's and have never seen the hot sauce. Thanks for that elmo, now I know what I'm doing for lunch tomorrow!

At 10:09 PM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Scott, Melissa, and Miles,

What better than Sin City to enjoy Popeyes! I like your blog too. I'll be linking you shortly.


You bring up an interesting point. I forgot about those litigious knuckleheads who can't read labels or use common sense. But are you ever right about this crazy thing called food blogging. They should classify a new medical term for what is happening to me in particular: BLOGGER'S BELLY. But heck, if I go down, I'm bringin' y'all with me! Who else have I doomed to this fate?


I know someone who dunks their McDonald's french fries in honey! Are you her? But I'd be lying if I said that now I'm wondering what culinary alchemy might result if I glop on honey *AND* squirts of hot sauce on a Popeyes drumstick. I think I know: AWESOMENESS!!


We are crispy-chicken-co-conspirators! For once, I agree with a corporate jingle, because I "Love that chicken at Popeyes"

Diamond Dog,

Not sure if it tastes anything like Texas or Okie BBQ, but whether it does or it doesn't should be moot since this BBQ is damn good in its own right, in my humble opinion. If you enjoy it, give your thanks to my friend Cecile, who shared the secret with y'all (that's the second time I've used "y'all" today).

And as you requested here are some mouthwatering pics that I took. I didn't take very many because shortly after taking three shots and diving in, my fingers got quickly sullied with sauce:



Why do I all of a sudden feel like Jon Stewart? I think he was as surprised as anyone when it was revealed that a lot of people were getting their news from his show. But hey, if I'm informing the public even as I chomp down on greasy Popeyes, then that's even better!


14 pieces?! Are they wolves? Dang. As good as they were, just the 4-pieces I ate did me in. I hadn't felt so guilty in a while, and I eat a lot of pork fat! None were left to even get cold. Maybe that will be my plan for next time...I'll just eat two for dinner and save the others for later. Because I would've loved to finally try cold fried chicken, eaten in the dark, late at night, when no one's watching.


I would've said I saw you too, because there was a woman who nudged her husband motioning at how I was taking pics of the food. But I was there Saturday the 19th and Monday the 21st, so it couldn't have been me. I just wish there were more people like us. That is, I wish everyone took pics of their food.


Ah, I think your friend and I are kindred spirits (we had a similar gastrointestinal reaction, which was something I didn't want to detail with, ahem, my usual color commentary).


I have thought about it, and came to the same conclusion: there's 5 years of posts. That's about 300 or so items. I wish blogger came out with tags from the very beginning. That would've been nice. I suppose I could do it on the new posts, and backtrack one by one, until I get them all...but that requires someone who isn't lazy.


It's a quandry wrapped in riddle topped with a whipped cream and a maraschino cherry. I fear that the movie Wall-E (with the overweight lumps of flesh wizzing around in automated La-Z-Boys) isn't science-fiction, it's science-eventuality.


And I had no idea that you're supposed to put honey in the biscuit or that they even had honey!

At 1:11 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

i love popeye and it is only available in HONG KONG INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

damn, do i hv to fly just to enjoy popeye's lol

i'll settle for KFC with rice instead, just the way we love it in indonesia yummmmmmmmm

freak it, at least i am enjoying every pound i gain :p

At 2:19 AM, Blogger DanGarion said...

Well guess what I was wrong about what day I was there. It was Monday night! My wife just reminded me that it wasn't Friday (I only thought it was Friday because my bank statement showed a charge to there on Friday, but that must have been the lunch I took my dad too). So it must have been my wife that you saw nudge me! Talk about a small world, of all the BBQ places we could end up we end up at the same one!

At 6:21 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Mochachocolata Rita,

And I can't believe I have actually BEEN at that Popeyes at the Hong Kong Airport! Didn't eat there though, because we obviously eat a lot of Popeyes back at home. But we did pig out at a noodle shop "Lost City of Snacks", which is technically in the food court outside the security gate.


Then it was you! On looking at the picture in your profile, I recognized your wife as the woman who nudged her husband that Monday night (your back was towards me). And what's more, I think that's her on the upper left of this shot .

At 2:07 PM, Blogger Christine D. said...

Popeye's is my favorite fast food fried chicken place (damn, that's a lot of "f"s)! Dirty rice and hot sauce...mmmm -- and 50% chance of diarrhea.

At 2:51 AM, Blogger Diamond Dog said...


When you write articles for OC Weekly, I think they limit or edit out your pictures. They take up too much room that needs to be used for plastic surgery, porno chat line ads, and massage and escort ads!

With that being said, could you always post a link to the other pictures you take in the comment section of the current blog review that coincides with the OC Weeekly review?

Otherwise you are going to have to hear me request a link to the "other" pictures of the OC Weekly review in the comments section of your blog review every week.

People LIKE all the details and pictures you take. They like them much better than fake "plus two's", liposuction, gay phone sex, and happy endings. Well, maybe not the happy endings.

Diamond Dog - The Word's First Food Blog Commentator and Critic

At 2:59 AM, Blogger Diamond Dog said...

Anyone in Anaheim want to send me a coupon for Blakes Place from the Pennysaver? I live in Tustin. I'll send you any coupon I have from Tustin! Might even have a Steer Inn Coupon lying around!

Elmo, you might want to consider asking places that you give good reviews to if they will give your blog readers the same deal as the coupon's they send out as your blog knows no boundaries! You can post a yea or nay in your comments section and post the deal details.

To keep it and unbiased review, only do it for places AFTER you give a good review and not for the places you give a bad review or Cest La Vie in Laguna (are you reading Grffin? I am so past the 100 person mark)

Just a thought.

At 5:03 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...


I had no idea other people experienced the same "issues" with Popeyes chicken. But if its also a laxative, then who needs fiber? Screw veggies! More room for chicken. HAHA!

Diamond Dog,

When I take pics at restaurants that I review outside of this blog, it's just so that I can remember what I had (the old noggin's not so good at remembering details without them). Usually I take the shots quickly, without ever attempting to focus or frame.

As such, most of the time, they suck. If I get lucky and it looks good enough to share, I will.

I much prefer the "people shots" that the OC Weekly photographer takes (like the King Lobster Palace chef in action and the Hobels eating) over my boring food photos. These are shots I can't get without sacrificing my anonymity. And I value that above all else.

If anyone's wondering how I don't stick out while I shoot, just look around the next time you eat. Yelpers, Chowhounds, Biggest Menuers and other food bloggers are out there taking pics too. And I'm glad. I blend in.

And thanks for the suggestion, but I'm staying clear of offering coupons here (at least for the foreseeable future).

At 10:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot Elmo! Now I'll have to have Popeye's by the weekend! So good!

Please tell me you asked for strawberry jelly packets for your biscuits!

Why does every sentence end in an exclamation point?!? I think I really need some chicken!!!

At 5:48 PM, Blogger Par said...

I love eating at popeyes!

At 9:15 PM, Blogger Bill said...

I like this place but just don't understand why some of the pieces are so dang small. For a little fast food joint I love the beans and rice and of course the chicken.

At 9:20 PM, Blogger DanGarion said...

I love putting honey in the cajun rice. Oh man that is GREAT!

At 11:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HAHA Popeyes! Good old days, we used to go there for those 99 cent meals. It was like a baby version of KFC. Anyhow, I still prefer Sizzler (don't know why I always put the two of them in comparison... maybe because 'kids eat only 99 cents!') - but I would go to Popeyes just for the nostalgia.
And to rebel against the council's attempted ban on fast-food restaurants.

At 9:44 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...

That Girl Can Eat,

Strawberry jelly! Honey! Hot sauce! Is there no end to accoutrements at Popeyes? My stomach is already tying itself in knots. But who am I kidding, it's going to do so anyway -- and love it. There's just something about that Popeyes chicken!! More exclamations!!

Ms. 2__Be,

It's like their jingle!


Specially-bred midget chicken?


If there's one thing I didn't think of doing, it's honey in the beans and rice...but hey, I've heard of crazier things just in this comment board alone! But that's not a bad idea. Honey: good. Beans and rice: good. Together: why not?


Remember when Sizzler was the "IT" place to go? When I was young, I thought of nothing but becoming rich someday so that I can go to Sizzler every weekend. Plus, that cheese toast is awesome!

At 9:56 AM, Blogger DanGarion said...

I only put the honey in the cajun rice (dirty rice), not the beans and rice. :) Sweet and spicy all together, YUM!

At 9:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Popeyes that I frequent in San Diego still has the Tuesday 2 piece special for $.99. For this price, we've been having weekly chicken meals for several months now.

Hopefully it's still $.99 tomorrow!

At 10:33 AM, Blogger Eddie Lin said...

It's still 99 cents near my 'hood, Elmo! Wanna drive up here for the real bargain? Ooops, I forget. Gas isn't 99 cents anymore.

I agree with one of the above comments - you really need to ask for some honey next time. Honey with hot sauce is sick delicious. No, seriously, when you eat four orders of the special with honey and hot sauce you'll get super sick but it's so delish!

At 9:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow Glad everything sounds rosey ... will be suprised if anyone sees this. But I had my 4th experiance of a $100 order in lake worth Texas. And I do love the chicken but the service was just aweful and got home with "really" half my order. Wanted to make a few suggestions on the web ... not sure how else.. but that is not the way to go. Apparently they are sure there is no customer feedback necessary ... so don't try it will just piss you off. WOW I really used to hate KFC and was ok about that. Now this bs has sent me back. How totally incompetent and negligent. Have to ask about your game plan? Apparently it does not include customers. From and exec with a leading retail company … good luck with your current “brilliant strategy” looking forward to see how it turns out …

At 7:06 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...


Ahh. Well that's somewhat more sane.


Ahh, as I write this, it's Tuesday again...and it's been *almost* a month since I wrote this's POPEYE'S TIME!


Still $0.99!! Curse you L.A. County! But honey and hot sauce? I'm onboard, eventhough it sounds like the formula for napalm.


Hey, good luck to you. I'm not sure anyone's going to see this but us...but sounds like your ax needed some grinding. So I'll allow it.


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