Chicken Sandwich Mania!
By Matt Formica
With the great chicken sandwich war of 2019 waging between Popeye’s and Chick-Fil-A, here are some great alternatives in Long Beach!
Located in the Promenade downtown, The Ordinarie is serving up more than your average chicken sandwich. The chicken itself is brined before being breaded to compliment the vinegar in the slaw. The brioche bun can hardly contain the huge piece of chicken coupled with that delicious pickled cabbage. This isn’t going to be a greasy chicken sandwich like you’re used to. The Ordinaire has decided to take traditional American tavern food and elevate it to a new level. Although it isn’t the cheapest option in town, the quality of the meal and the range of sides and ways to modify the dish to an individual's taste are definitely worth it.
Out late and looking for a good meal? Well, Gallagher’s Irish Pub on East Broadway St. has you covered. Their menu is quite large, but one of the shining stars of the menu is their buffalo spicy chicken sandwich. It's spicy, it’s savory, it comes with steak cut fries; it is probably the perfect pairing for a nice cold beer. If buffalo is the specific flavor you are looking for the good news is there are six other chicken sandwiches on the menu. Not only is the food delicious, but the advantage of eating at an Irish pub is that they will be open till 2 a.m.
Gus’s Famous Fried Chicken
Regardless of how you order your chicken, at Gus’s it will show up in an open-face sandwich with two sides of your choice. Despite being a large chain in the South, Gus’s Famous Fried Chicken has only three franchises in southern California. Being from the South means one very important thing: They know chicken. On the table, there are bottles of hot sauce and ketchup, and you can ask for one of three additional sauces: ranch, honey mustard or barbecue. That’s it. At Gus’s they let the chicken do the talking; there is no need for the fancy stuff.
Bite Mi is an Asian kitchen that has an obvious inspiration from Vietnamese cuisine but offers so much more. One such dish is a baked chicken sandwich loaded with all of the delicious pickled veggies typically found in Bahn Mi. However, Bite Mi likes to put a contemporary spin on their dishes. This might be the jalapeños added to sandwiches or the secret marinade they put on their chicken. Additionally, as a result of feedback received since opening up in The Hangar as part of the newly renovated LBX center, they have added a vegetarian option to their menu, similar to the baked chicken sandwich but substituting fried tofu as the protein.
Cali Shrimp and Wingz House
For those who are tired of the chicken sandwich craze, Cali Shrimp and Wingz House in Cambodia Town offers a great alternative. Having recently come under new ownership, the new chefs have poured all of their passion into their wings. Serving up a wide range of flavors and heat levels, all of the sauces are made in-house and their menu is constantly evolving to incorporate more options for guests. Plus, they are the only place on this list serving fried Oreos. If that isn’t a draw, then I don’t know what is. No matter how you like your wings, make sure to get a side of the “booboo” sauce.