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Nicole Cockburn, senior training manager with Popeyes UK, has been hard at work bring Aberdeen staff up to speed. Image - Aberdeen Inspired

There’s a huge buzz of excitement around the opening of Popeyes on Union Street this Monday – not least from the restaurant’s bosses themselves who say they aim to help the regeneration of the Granite Mile.

Ahead of the doors being thrown open, Aberdeen Inspired was invited along for a sneak peek at how the New Orleans-inspired chicken restaurant will look and sample the tasty treats that will be on offer.

We also had the chance to chat with Georgie Ross, head of central marketing for Popeyes UK, who explained why the globally famous chain has decided to open in Aberdeen – only its second outlet in Scotland - and why on Union Street in particular.

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Warm and welcoming, the interior of the new Popeyes on Union Street. Image - Aberdeen Inspired

“We are really looking forward to opening in Aberdeen. Union Street was a key location for us, it’s right in the heart of the city centre with high footfall – you can see how many people there are around today” she said.

“After the success of our first Scottish restaurant in Barrhead last September, Aberdeen was an obvious choice as we continue our expansion around Scotland.”

Georgie added that Popeyes were aware of the regeneration drive for Union Street, which has already seen several new businesses and shops open on the Granite Mile. She hopes Popeyes’ choice to set up its stall on Union Street will attract more ventures.

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Taste of New Orleans - some of the dishes to be enjoyed at Popeyes. Image - Aberdeen Inspired.

“Bringing footfall to the high street and bringing that New Orleans hospitality that we’re so proud of will really benefit Union Street,” she said.

Adrian Watson, chief executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said he was delighted to see another business opening its doors on Union Street – especially a globally-recognised brand.

“It is heartening to hear Popeyes not only chose Aberdeen but specifically Union Street for their newest venture in Scotland. What a massive vote of confidence that is for the Granite Mile and for the city centre as a whole,” he said.

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Welcome additon: Popeyes is at 111-115 Union Street. Image - Aberdeen Inspired.

“I certainly share Popeyes’ hopes that this latest addition will attract even more businesses to boost the ongoing and unstinting drive to regenerate Union Street and attract more people into the heart of Aberdeen.”

Popeyes’ new restaurant – at 111-115 Union Street - is a sleek, colourful affair, with a definite New Orleans jazz vibe to the atmosphere, as you can see from our images.

The kitchen is also state-of-the-art with a full brigade making all the food fresh and from scratch, including stretching, kneading, flouring and frying the chicken dishes by hand.

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Hitting the high notes of Louisiana flavours at Popeyes. Image - Aberdeen Inspired

The New Orleans-style menu will boast the famous Popeyes Chicken Sandwich – a favourite of the Kardashians – a range of wraps, a huge choice of Louisiana fried chicken, tenders, wings and original Southern biscuits and gravy. There will also be breakfast options.

Popeyes are pulling out all the stops to announce their arrival in Aberdeen, including offering the first three people in the queue on Monday’s opening day free chicken sandwiches for a year and additionally the first 25 customers will be rewarded with a free chicken sandwich and Popeyes UK merchandise.

And today, Thursday, 11th April, a sand artwork on a Popeyes theme appeared on Aberdeen Beach, with people invited to post a photo tagging @popeyesuk on Instagram for another chance to win a free chicken sandwich.

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Cooking up a storm in the state-of-the-art kitchen at Popeyes on Union Street. Image - Aberdeen Inspired

Also, the Aberdeen letters – an innovation from Aberdeen Inspired – will be tricked out in the signature orange colours of Popeyes for the next two weeks.

Georgie said: “The letters for us are an iconic and well-recognised landmark in Aberdeen. When we started looking into the area we knew it was something we wanted to work with, using what we call our unapologetically orange brand colours, to paint the town orange as much as we can.”

Popeyes on Union Street will open at 11am on Monday, April 15.