Fried chicken lovers: Can I get a witness?

By Brian Whitmore
I’m not sure you can be an American and not like chicken. I’m not sure you can be southern and not like Fried Chicken.
Simmer down vegetarians.
Last Wednesday, I drove to Swainsboro, Ga., to work on The Chronicle’s budget for next fiscal year.
Truth is there is not much between Clinton and Swainsboro, traveling down Hwy. 221.
Three things caught my eye.
1) How beautiful the Savannah River is as you cross over the state line from South Carolina to Georgia.
2) Nut farms in Georgia — the kind you eat, not the crazy people we encounter each day in Laurens County.
3) Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen in Louisville, Ga.
Now the spokeswoman for Popeyes has been on my television for years, telling me that I’m going to “love that chicken from Popeyes.”
The closest Popeyes to Clinton is Greer. It opened this year and is 46 miles, just over an hour, from The Chronicle — even the boss can’t take that long of a lunch break.
The only thing I ever go to Greer for is the Barn Yard Flea Market and that’s rare.
So when I saw the Popeyes location right along my route in Georgia, I just had to stop.
Besides, Popeyes chicken sandwiches have taken the world by storm recently, some saying they’re better than Chick-fil-A.
As I pulled in to the restaurant parking lot, there was a sign — “sold out of chicken sandwiches.”
How can a chicken place be sold out of chicken?
So, I bought an 8-piece box of mild Popeyes chicken. It came with four biscuits and a side of potatoes.
I started to eat, while driving down the road. It looked like Bojangles chicken and to me tasted like Bojangles chicken.
In total, I ate five pieces of chicken, while throwing the bones out the window.
Hey, I’m a growing boy.
My judgement: Popeyes is good and I’d go back, but I’d give Bojangles the edge.
When I got home, my wife, Jane, ate the rest of the chicken. She hates Bojangles chicken, saying it’s too spicy. But she loved Popeyes chicken and said it was the best she’d ever eaten.
Really? Better than KFC?
“Yes,” she said.
I’ll have to wait on the chicken sandwich, but seriously, how can it be better than Chick-fil-A?
You know chicken eaters are blessed in Laurens County. We have Whiteford’s, which regularly wins The Chronicle’s Best Fried Chicken Award.
We’ve got KFC, Bojangles, Chick-fil-A, Zaxby’s and more. If it has feathers and struts, we’re going to fry it up.
So, Popeyes, maybe it is time to eye a location in Laurens County — how about Clinton?
A friend once told me that Laurens County had some “chicken eating people.” He’s right.
I love it grilled, baked, rotisserie. I love it pretty much any way you can prepare it and with any types of spices.
But you can’t beat fried chicken. Least healthy, yes, and I probably won’t live as long eating all these fried birds, but hey it’s worth it.
And we know there will be fried chicken in Heaven, at least for the Baptists.
Brian Whitmore is the publisher of The Chronicle. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The Chronicle. Whitmore can be reached at

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