Long-awaited Popeyes restaurant now open for business in Concord

  • The new Popeyes on Loudon Road past the Steeplegate Mall and before Walmart. GEOFF FORESTER/ Monitor staff

  • The new Popeyes on Loudon Road past the Steeplegate Mall and before Walmart. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Published: 3/29/2023 3:01:30 PM

As soon as Dayton and Elizabeth Fox found out the new Popeyes in Concord was open for business, the Texas transplants hopped in the car and headed straight to Loudon Road.

“We know fried chicken and Popeyes is definitely pretty high up there,” Dayton Fox said. “Once we realized it’s here and not an hour and a half drive or two-hour drive, we wanted to get here as soon as possible.”

The Foxes lived in the Dallas/Fort Worth area of Texas for years and said Popeyes is as close as you can  get to “southern chicken,” up here in the north.

Whenever the Pittsfield couple needed their southern chicken fix in the past, they’d drive down to Manchester, which is 45 minutes away and makes for an hour and a half round trip.

“Twenty minutes is definitely way better,” Dayton Fox said.

The new location in Concord – which opened near the Steeplegate Mall Wednesday, a full year and a half after getting city approval – is the fourth Popeye’s in New Hampshire. Other locations are already in Nashua, Manchester and Salem.

Popeyes was founded in Louisiana in 1972 as a fried-chicken restaurant and is now owned by Restaurant Brands International, a Canadian firm. It has more than 3,450 restaurants worldwide, almost all of them owned by independent franchisees.

The chain is well known for the fried-chicken sandwich that it rolled out in 2019, spurred by the success of the Chick-fil-A chain. It quickly sold out across the country, producing stories of tussles at some eateries as people tried to get their hands on one.

This success has been attributed by some with launching “chicken wars” among fast-food restaurants, many of whom have rolled out their own variations of fried-chicken sandwiches – even McDonald’s, which had resisted selling fried chicken for the first half-century of its existence but changed its mind after sagging hamburger sales.

Even though the new Concord location is much closer to the Foxes, they don’t want to drive to Concord too often to get their fried chicken, so they came up with a solution.

“We bought extra so we can put it in the freezer so we can have it for a later date,” Dayton Fox said.

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