Alabama Chick-fil-A Lured into Sign War with Local Barbecue Joint
A barbecue restaurant across the street was a bit upset when Chick-fil-A introduced its own barbecue sandwich
If you're a parent hoping to show your kids what life was like before Twitter, hop into your station wagon and take a family road trip to Mobile, Alabama. There, two restaurants—a Chick-fil-A and a local joint called Moe's Original Bar B Que—have been airing their grievances in short bursts of characters the old-fashioned way… by manually changing the messages on the restaurants' letter boards.
The low-tech beef began over chicken. Back in July, national chicken chain Chick-fil-A debuted a new sandwich featuring a grilled chicken breast topped with Colby Jack cheese, bacon "hand-tossed in a brown sugar and pepper blend," lettuce and a "zesty Smokehouse BBQ sauce" served on a sweet yeast bun. "Try Our New Smokehouse BBQ Sandwich!" the chain's Mobile location touted on its marquee. Seeing as Chick-fil-A doesn't usually dabble in barbecue, the new menu item caught the attention of the restaurant across the street—Moe's Original Bar B Que.
In response, the barbecue spot's co-owner Ashleigh Valluzzo opted to change the message on their marquee. "Chick Fil A I Thought We Were Friends," the sign read, followed by a bit of a dagger: "Open Sundays." (Chick-fil-A is notably closed on Sundays for those who are out of the fast food gossip loop.)
After a bit of corporate wrangling—Chick-fil-A is a large company, after all—the Mobile location's general manager Jon Hewett was finally allowed to respond—"Moe's, We Miss You! Let's Be Friends Again!"—thus beginning a back and forth that has gone through four iterations and even drawn in some letter board messaging from a nearby strip club called Diamonds. Don't ask. Just look at the photos instead. Moe's posted all of them to its Facebook page last week.
"I have a nerdy sense of humor," Moe's Valluzzo explained to Alabama's AL.com. Meanwhile, Chick-fil-A's Hewett told the site, "I saw it as an internet gold mine." Wait, that's right: The internet still exists. With all this IRL interaction you almost had a chance to forget.
This story originally appeared on Foodandwine.com.