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Popeyes: Is It Worth The Hype?

Are you ready for our honest reviews of Popeyes Philippines?

Every few days, we checked the line at the newly opened Popeyes in Arcovia City, hoping it wasn't as long as when it opened in mid-May 2019. Famous for their delicious chicken, many were super disappointed when Popeyes left the Philippines in 2007. So obviously, when people found out they were making a comeback, news spread like wildfire.

And they're coming in hot! Can you believe they have multiple branches already in the works? Apart from the one in Pasig City, here's where you can expect to see Popeyes:

  • Vertis North
  • Eastwood City
  • Ali Mall Cubao
  • Festival Mall
  • SM San Lazaro
  • SM Manila
  • Kroma Tower Makati
  • Alabang Town Center

After a month, the line finally eased up, and we were able to get our Popeyes fix in less than 20 minutes! Below are the Cosmo team's honest reviews.

EVERYTHING WE BOUGHT AT POPEYES

  • Two orders of Bundle A (8 pieces of chicken, 4 servings of rice, 4 orders of spaghetti, 4 drinks) for P699: Original Chicken and Spicy Chicken
  • Two orders of Assorted Biscuits: Honey, White Chocolate, Hazelnut for P150
  • Cajun Fries for P42
  • Chicken French Quarter for P165

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Total: P1,905

ORIGINAL CHICKEN

If I could only have one kind of meat in the world, it would definitely be chicken. It can be cooked in so many ways and I'd still love it the same. After trying Popeyes' original chicken, I'm glad that I can officially add a new fast food restaurant to my list of go-to places for fried chicken. What I love most is that the meat is juicy and flavorful. I got a side order of gravy thinking I'd need it, but I honestly didn't! For me, fried chicken is delicious AF if I can eat it on its own—no gravy, no ketchup, no additional sauce. Popeyes got me to do just that. - Lou

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This was my first time to try Popeyes, so I had no expectations, but boy was I hungry. I chose the original flavor because I can't handle spicy food, and I was really happy to hear and ~feel~ that crunch in the chicken skin. The actual chicken meat was tender and juicy, but I wasn't a fan of the somewhat-smoky flavor. - Andie

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SPICY CHICKEN

The spicy fried chicken I've tried from fast food chains before never really lived up to my desired level of heat. I gave Popeyes' version a shot to see if maybe, MAYBE it would be really spicy and flavorful. Upon grabbing a classic drumstick piece, I was disappointed at the size of the chicken. It was smaller than I expected, and it didn't look like it was properly coated in batter. When I bit into it, though, I was happy to see pockets of orange-looking spices inside the chicken. This most likely meant the chicken was marinated in a spicy mixture prior to being coated and fried. While I did get some heat from the chicken, it didn't taste like anything elsethere was no flavor profile; it was just plain salty. While Popeyes' spicy chicken wasn't bad, it certainly wasn't the best. It was just okay. I wouldn't mind eating it again, but I also wouldn't line up for three hours for it. - Tisha

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With my first bite alone, I knew this would be my new favorite spicy fried chicken. I really hate it when the spice is a powdered mess ON TOP of the chicken; that's why Popeyes' take got my seal of approval when I saw the spice was rubbed in between the skin and meat. The taste was even better! It was smoky and peppery and not overwhelmingly spicy. The skin wasn't drenched in oil and the meat was so soft. LOVE IT. DEF WOULD GO BACK. - Cindy

I had high expectations for the Popeyes spicy fried chicken, only because I am huge fan of spicy Chickenjoy. LOL. If I had the choice, spicy fried chicken is the only kind of fried chicken I'd ever eat. Thankfully, Popeyes' take didn't disappoint—it was delicious. It was so juicy, and I really loved how the spices were inside the chicken, not just sprinkled on top of the cooked chicken. Admittedly, I tried the chicken when it was no longer piping hot. I can only imagine how much tastier it would be had I tried it when it was. The skin was flavorful and the gravy went perfectly well with it—you'll want to it more than a cup of rice, tbh. - Retty

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BISCUITS

I've only ever eaten the biscuits from RACKS, and I like those for their flaky texture and light, yet rich, flavor. I expected Popeyes' biscuits to be the same, or even better, because they're famous for it. I tried the honey biscuit. What I ate instead was a semi-tough, dense biscuit that looked like a tightly-packed pan de sal. But when I decided to dip the biscuit into their gravy, it was like the heavens parted. It was a match made in carb heaven. I wouldn't dip this biscuit in honey because I feel like it'd become denser than it already is and stick to the roof of my mouth (no, thank you). -Tisha

Out of the different flavors, I reached for the hazelnut biscuit. The sweetness of the chocolate and the mild saltiness of the biscuit had the PERFECT balance. I wish, though, that my biscuit was more chocolatey (read: drenched) because the biscuit felt incomplete without it. I did notice, too, that the biscuit was a bit too dry for my liking. Still, it was a great snack! - Cindy

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When I found out that Popeyes was back in the Philippines, the very first thing that came to mind was if their honey biscuits were going to be as good as the ones in America. I've tried Popeyes in the US before, so I was hopeful that the biscuits here would be good, too. True enough, they were. All of the biscuits were dense and easy to eat. They barely crumbled, which was a good sign. I liked the hazelnut and white chocolate twist to the biscuits. They weren't too sweet, but I think the star is still the honey biscuit. Adding honey to a classic, pillowy biscuit just makes everything a whole lot better. - Lou

It's a pancake and biscuit combined! I'm a fan of desserts, but this one was more than a dessert because it was perfect as a filling snack. I ate it while taking a break from work (between lunch and dinner) and it was just the right amount of buttery, crumbly, and chewy. I loved that there's a chocolate biscuit option on the menu because I love sweets. And right after I finished it, I WANTED MORE. It's definitely a must-try! Lily

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SPAGHETTI

I ~loved~ the spaghetti. It had a great ratio of sauce:cheese:spaghetti noodles, and there were enough hotdog slices to find a surprise in every bite. Sweet spaghetti fans, you have to add this to your list. I could have eaten another solo order if I hadn't already finished my chicken leg! - Andie

Their spaghetti really reminds me of another local fast food chain's, and that's not a bad thing. I loved how big the serving of their spaghetti was; it could actually count as a meal (at least for me). The sauce was creamier and cheesier, too. From the three things I tried, this would be the one I'd go back for. - Tisha

This was actually the dish that caught my attention the most. I was surprised that the spaghetti was sweet! I'm glad that Popeyes gave it a Filipino touch. The sweet sauce, ground meat, and al dente noodles worked well altogether. - Lou

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I don't mind sweet spaghetti, and if you feel the same way, then you'll like Popeyes spaghetti. It also didn't taste like any other sweet fast food restaurant spaghetti I've tried before, and that's a huge plus. Best paired with the spicy fried chicken, IMHO! - Retty

CAJUN FRIES

TBH, I tried the cajun rice first, and it didn’t really leave a lasting impression on me. I thought the cajun fries were going to be exactly the same, but I was surprised they weren’t. I really tasted that slight extra kick in my mouth, thanks to the spices. I know for sure the cajun fries would go well with the chicken. They're crispy, tasty, and not too oily! - Lou

Popeyes' cajun fries were best paired with some chicken or the burgers. While they weren't bad, I found them on the saltier side, so I couldn't eat them alone. This bummed me out because, in general, I finish my fries before I go for the main attraction. Overall, I'm not mad at it, and I'll probably still order 'em the next time I order from Popeyes. - Ysa

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CHICKEN FRENCH QUARTER

Not sure if I was just way too hungry when I devoured this bad boy but it hit all the right spots! I was ecstatic to find that the Chicken French Quarter has bacon strips. They also used a special sauce I can't decipher, but I'm not out here trying to solve all of life's mysteries. I will just accept the good that is this burger. - Ysa

Follow Ysa, Jacinda, Tisha, Lily, Andie, Lou, and Retty on Instagram.