Depending on how stoned you are right now, the picture above will either rock your world or make you marvel at American restaurant chains’ capacity for poor judgement. Meet the Chicken Waffle Tender, the latest creation from Southern fried chicken joint Popeye’s. It is exactly what it sounds like.
Popeye’s cites “the dietary habits of jazz musicians in Los Angeles during the 1940s and 50s” as their inspiration, by which they mean “legendary (and presumably very profitable) L.A. institution Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles.” But instead of blatantly ripping Roscoe’s off, Popeye’s has opted to combine both elements of the iconic chicken and waffles dish into one weirdly textured hybrid.
The problem here is, of course, that chicken and waffles without the actual waffles completely defeats the point. No matter how waffle-like the chicken tender batter is—and we’re doubtful it’ll taste that much different than your average egg ‘n’ flour job—it’s still not enough to replace a fluffy, full-blown waffle, all the better to contrast with the chicken and soak up the all-important syrup. Maple honey dipping sauce be damned.