With the doors closing at 11:00 PM on Saturday evening the Town of Herndon police closed the line waiting to order at the Guatamalan import, Pollo Campero, at 8:30 this evening. Prior to this I was told the line had extended to over three hours. At 9:30 when we stopped by their crowded parking lot there were approximately 100 people in line outside the restaurant with another 25 to 30 in a line snaking around its interior. Almost exclusively the composition of the line was Hispanic prompting me to ask one of the Herndon officers if he had tasted the chicken and was this a social thing or it was truly THAT good to justify this kind of line. He said that yes, he'd had it-a number of times-and he felt that it was really a little of both.
Their menu shows a three piece dinner with two sides a medium soda and a tortilla or biscuit (yes, biscuit!) for $5.99. The sides they sell are: cole slaw, Campero beans, Spicy rice, french fries and mashed potatoes. Eight pieces of chicken alone are $9.99, 16 for $18.99. "Camperitos" are McDonald's like nuggets, 12 for $7.89. Chicken wings, bbq or hot, are 6 for $3.29 and 9 for $4.59. A grilled or crispy chicken salad is $3.99. Desserts include apple, pecan and lemon pie, fruit ice and Flan. For "Latin flavors" Horchata and Tamarindo are available.
While we did not eat there if it were not for the ethnicity of those in line the place looks remarkably American, not dissimilar from any other chicken place. In fact the thought struck me that someone from Guatamala saw a Popeye's twenty or so years ago and brought the concept back home, adapting the chicken to a Popeye's style menu.
Anyway, for those who like to wait in line, I should mention that we had just left the Cheesecake Factory in the Tyson's Galleria after being told their line was ALSO two and one half hours long.
You may draw your own conclusions.