Patti LaBelle’s sweet potato pies, which are sold exclusively at Walmart, have become an instant hit. Although the pies have gotten rave reviews, the songstress owes her overnight success to a viral video produced by James Wright.
Wright’s review, which was published on YouTube on November 12, got over two million views within six days. It also prompted thousands of shoppers to descend on their local Walmart stores in search of the infamous pies.
— Mashable (@mashable) November 16, 2015
Walmart bakery and deli vice president Kerry Robinson said one of Patti LaBelle’s sweet potato pies has sold every second since the video was released.
Although many locations eventually sold out of the popular product, Robinson confirmed Walmart is currently “in the process of securing another 2 million pounds of sweet potatoes.”
Sweet potato pie has a flavor and texture similar to pumpkin pie. Although both are popular during the winter holiday season, pumpkin pies remain the most popular.
In an attempt to increase the popularity of their sweet potato pies, Walmart partnered with Patti LaBelle to develop a specialty sweet potato pie.
As reported by NPR, the pies originally debuted in September. However, sales were not remarkable. Two months later, a viral video increased the popularity of the sweet potato pies exponentially.
As the video begins, James Wright is having problems opening the package — which he suggests was sealed with “Gorilla Glue.” However, once he is able to remove the pie from the box, and taste it, he appears to be pleasantly surprised.
Wright’s review is peppered with lyrics from some of LaBelle’s most popular hits, and a touch of profanity. However, as he and his review are undeniably unique — the video went viral within hours.
Patti LaBelle’s sweet potato pie received 4.3 out of five stars on the Walmart website. Although 54 out of 69 reviewers rated the pie with five stars, 12 customers rated the product with three or fewer stars.
Those who like the sweet potato are calling it “the best sweet potato pie ever” and “hands down the best store-bought pie ever.”
The reviewers who did not care for the pie complained about the texture and the spices used in the recipe.
A native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Patricia Louise Holte Edwards began singing with the church choir at the age of 10. After winning talent show at the age of 15, she realized she had a unique skill and decided to pursue a career in music.
Patti LaBelle adopted her famous stage name in the early 1960s when she formed her first band — the Ordettes. Although the band was a regional success, they gained national attention after performing a show at the Apollo as the BlueBelles.
— HuffPost BlackVoices (@blackvoices) November 18, 2015
Although the BlueBelles were a moderate success throughout the 1960s, they were dropped by their manager and record label in 1970. Although LaBelle started yet another band, she had far more success with her later solo career.
As reported by Biography, Patti began her solo career in 1977 with a contract with Epic Records. Although she had a few moderate hits throughout the late 1970s and early 1980s, Patti LaBelle became an international sensation in 1884.
With the release of the singles “New Attitude” and “Stir it Up,” which were featured on the Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack, LaBelle reached number 17 on Billboard’s Hot 100.
Although her music career has spanned more than four decades, Patti is also well-known for her recipes and food products.
Unfortunately, Patti LaBelle’s sweet potato pie is not featured on her personal website. However, fans can find recipes for her BBQ baby back ribs, OTR macaroni and cheese, and her easy sausage creole.
Walmart stores are either sold out or running low on Patti LaBelle’s sweet potato pies. Fortunately, Walmart confirmed they will be restocked as soon as possible.
[Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images]