Just like the Sailor Man himself often said—that’s all I can stands, I can’t stands no more—Kim Sanchez, owner of Sweet Dixie Kitchen, an LGBTQ-owned business, felt the same sentiment at the one-year anniversary of Popeyegate – which thrust her into the national spotlight as a result from an angry online reviewer who called her out for using Popeyes Chicken in one of her monthly specials. One year later Sanchez declared October Fridays as Popeye Fry-day and will feature the infamous Pops Chicken and Waffles. Sanchez also offered the Naughty Girl during October, a biscuit sandwich with a Popeyes fried chicken strip, pickels and coleslaw on a biscuit. The first five people to order either dish on any Friday in October received it for half-price.
When Sanchez opened Sweet Dixie Kitchen in Long Beach’s East Village Arts District, it stood apart from its neighboring eateries. There were plenty of gastropubs, seafood restaurants, craft cocktail bars and coffee houses in downtown, but there were no restaurants offering southern food.
One weekend Kim headed to Long Beach to visit one of her daughters who had settled in the city. She quickly fell in love with the city by the sea and soon relocated. When a former bakery vacated its space at the northwest corner of 3rd and Elm, Kim seized the opportunity by signing a lease and opening Sweet Dixie Kitchen.
The restaurant, which has since expanded into the neighboring storefront, is open for breakfast and lunch Wednesday through Monday. The mostly scratch kitchen churns out a menu of Southern Street Food that includes hearty breakfasts, biscuitwiches (southern-style sandwiches using biscuits instead of bread), traditional sandwiches, decadent desserts and homemade pastries, such as hand-scones, almond twists, sour cream coffee cake and breakfast tea breads. House-made lemonades, milkshakes, ice cream floats and French press coffees are offered, too. A selection of wine is also available during lunch and the restaurant has expanded its hours to include evenings.