June 13, 2014

Chick-fil-A Grilled Chicken Tasting Party


Last month some friends and I got together at our local Chick-fil-A to sample their latest menu addition (drum roll please):  Grilled Chicken.  

This year, I grabbed Kimberly, Nichole and Tammy for this sampling event, oh and the youngest of Los Tres Amigos.  I love visiting our local Chick-fil-A.  It's almost as if we're visiting family.  Dale; his wife, Linda; PR rep, Mickey and the crew are like old friends.  We're always greeted with a friendly "Hello" and a great big smile.  

Our visit was pretty special despite constant interruptions.  I saw a couple of old friends I hadn't seen in months.  One was there with her kids just having dinner and the other was there with her kids attending a birthday party.  My kid saw a few of his classmates. Everyone knows Dale Linda and would stop by our table for a "high five" or a handshake. 

Then there was the birthday parties.  This location doesn't really host a lot of birthday parties but there was one scheduled so Mickey being the "hostess with the mostess" stopped by to sing a birthday tune to the birthday girl.  A parent overheard and was like "OMG, my kid's birthday is today" and off Mickey went to sing again.  Then, a third time.  We were cracking up.  Even Mickey said she hadn't had this many birthdays in one night EVER.  I was surprised as I didn't know Chick-fil-A had a birthday song.  Turns out they don't.  The song she sang was one Mickey wrote a few months ago and it's become a standard.  

Mickey shared with us the new lineup of items featuring grilled chicken.  The new lineup includes:

  • Grilled Chicken Sandwich  
  • Grilled Chicken Club Sandwich
  • Grilled Chicken Nuggets
  • Grilled Chicken Cool Wrap
  • Grilled Market Salad
This new grilled chicken is juicy and marinated in variety of spices and fruit juices with a hint of smoke and grilled to perfection.  My kid loves the regular Chick-fil-A chicken nuggets but he said he may have just found a new favorite. Available in 8-count or 12-count entrees with guest's choice of dipping sauce. Also available in 4-count or 6-count Kids Meal servings.  The barbecue sauce is my kids' favorite, but I love the Chick-fil-A sauce and as luck would have it, Kimberly had never tasted Chick-fil-A sauce before.  We both agreed the Chick-fil-A Sauce was the perfect accompaniment for the new Grilled Chicken Nuggets.

No Chick-fil-A Tasting Party would be complete without a tour of the kitchen.  Did you know most Chick-fil-A restaurants welcome you to tour their restaurants?  Simply ask your local manager.  It's pretty neat seeing getting a behind the scenes peek at how the restaurant runs.  Nichole, having worked in a restaurant before, was pretty impressed with the cleanliness of the kitchen.  Tammy couldn't believe all the fresh produce.  I guess she was expecting to see a bunch of bagged lettuce but when she saw one of the staff making a salad she was impressed with the care and detail.

During our tour, we found one of the staff making a delicious Grilled Chicken Cool Wrap. Chick-fil-A uses fresh green leaf lettuce, red cabbage, Monterrey Jack and cheddar cheese, carrots and huge pieces of grilled chicken wrapped tightly in a flax seed flour tortilla.  

The new Grilled Chicken Cool Wrap was very filling.  It's served with Avocado Ranch dressing but you can request another dressing if you like. 
YUMMY!

The Grilled Market Salad was my favorite!  Although it's a regular menu item, there was something different about the salad that I hadn't noticed before.  One bite and I knew there was something different.  It wasn't just the addition of grilled chicken slices, there was something else but I couldn't put my fork, I mean finger on it.  



Finally, I realized it was BLUEBERRIES!  The "old" Market Salad had grapes, but in the new Grilled Market Salad grapes are gone and blueberries are in.  
The presentation is beautiful.  One thing to note is the Grilled Market Salad comes with bleu cheese.  I liked it.  Nichole ummm...notsomuch BUT no worries because at Chick-fil-A you can request no bleu cheese and voila, no bleu cheese.  

Lastly, we sampled the Grilled Chicken Club Sandwich.  One word:  BACON!  Bacon makes everything better!!!  Served on a multi-grain bun with a thick slice of colby jack cheese, this sandwich was absolutely delicious.  With each bite, the juices from the marinated chicken breast oozed forth.



Besides great food, the owners Dale and Linda are just really good people.  A couple of months ago, a devastating tornado ripped through Central Arkansas.  Without hesitation, the local Chick-fil-A owners got together and decided to donate a percentage of profits to the Salvation Army to help with recovery efforts.  Dale went even further by offering  a free meal to anyone who brought in a case of water.  He said he received enough cases of water to fill up his SUV.  So he loaded his SUV, packed some meals for tornado survivors and volunteers and off he went.  When he arrived, he was told water wasn't needed but the thermal bags he used to transport the food would come in handy to keep food warm and without any hesitation, Dale donated the thermal bags.  That's just the kind of guy he is.

Dale shoots straight from the hip.  He's an honest, hard-working man who loves his job, loves his wife, loves his family and loves his community.  He supports our local schools whenever we need him and he's just an all around great guy.  Yeah, the grilled chicken is pretty tasty but I can get that at any Chick-fil-A.  Dale, on the other hand, well Dale and Linda and their team, that's just at my local Chick-fil-A.  

Good food and good friends, yeah that's what makes my Chick-fil-A special.

I received 6 gift cards to share with family and friends and I considered hosting a giveaway, but I thought these meals would should be shared with my fellow Arkansans who lost so much in the recent tornado.  I was able to gift them to some volunteers who gave their time to help those who lost so much.  It just seemed like the right thing to do and I'm sure my fellow Three Boys and an Old Lady blog readers will agree.






Disclosure: Many thanks to MomItForward and Chick-fil-A for the opportunity to sample Chick-fil-A Grilled Chicken and share with my friends.   A special thank you to Dale and Linda Stock, Mickey and the entire crew of the McCain Chick-fil-A restaurant for your generous hospitality Opinions are my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. The opinions expressed above are mine. Click here for the Disclosure Policy of Three Boys and an Old Lady blog. The opinions expressed above are 100% my own. I received a product in exchange for this review and post. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.  

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