GLASGOW – Andrew Schory had the answer Friday to an oft-asked question around town: When is the new Popeyes opening?
Training has been occurring, so sometimes passersby who have seen several people inside have wondered whether it already has. In fact, on Friday, while the Glasgow Daily Times was there for an interview, two people came in prepared to place an order.
A sort of “soft opening” is planned at which family members and some friends of employees can get a preview meal, “so you'll see some activity here Monday night for certain, but it'll just be by invitation only,” said Schory, president of Blue Chip Restaurants, which owns the Glasgow Popeyes and three others.
The doors at 755 W. Cherry St. are scheduled to be open to the public at 10 a.m. Tuesday, he said, with regular hours being 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week.
With a mixture of Louisiana-style Cajun/zydeco/jazz music infusing the dining room, the Glasgow Daily Times asked the other big question some may have, and that was whether the restaurant has plenty of what's needed to make those chicken sandwiches that were so popular, the entire chain of Popeyes ran out of them less than a month after introducing the product. They are supposed to be available nationwide again Sunday.
“We've stocked up on supply for chicken sandwiches, so we really believe we'll have enough, but our guests can put us to the test,” Schory said.
In March, the Joint City-County Planning Commission approved the preliminary and final development plan. Construction started roughly 110 days ago, he said, and that was mostly on schedule.
“We delayed opening just a little bit for some timing issues,” he said. “We wanted to get the chicken sandwich back, for one.”
Schory said about 50 employees were hired for the Glasgow location, and they're all local and they're all new to the company except a handful who came from the Bowling Green Popeyes, which has been there about a year. Some natural attrition is expected after the opening, and the restaurant will typically have a staff of about 40, but it also depends on the demand here.
“We're really excited about being in Glasgow, super excited. The people here have been great to work with. Everybody we've met here, we really liked and we're really excited about being here,” he said.
Schory said the company celebrated being in the Popeyes circuit for one year last week, and this makes its fourth, with the other two being in Henderson and Evansville, Indiana.
The restaurant has bone-in and boneless chicken and seafood offerings that are New Orleans Cajun-inspired, with mild and spicy options.
“Even the spicy is not too spicy,” Schory said. “We marinate all of our chicken for 24-hours in spices. It's just kind of the pepper spice profile is knocked way down in the mild chicken.”
He said he doesn't think anyone would have a problem with the mild options, but he encourages people to try the spicy as well.
The chicken is primarily fried, but Popeyes does offer blackened tenders with no breading. They are a bit of a healthier option, but the blackened seasoning does have “some kick” to it. Meals with one or two sides, such red beans and rice, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, seasoned fries, and corn, are offered as well as sandwiches.
“We prepare all those sides fresh daily,” Schory said. “So we're dealing with fresh ingredients. Although it's considered a quick-service restaurant, the preparation of the food is full service from scratch.”
The chicken comes refrigerated, not frozen, he said, and it's battered and floured on site after the marination for 24 hours.