Thursday, 30 April 2009

An American Odyssey, Part 5: Utah

The Wikipedia entry for Utah tells us three important and seemingly unrelated things:

1:Approximately 80% of Utah's 2,736,424 people live along the Wasatch Front, centering around Salt Lake City.

2:According to Walmart, Utah has the fewest number of Walmart stores per capita at .081 per 100,000 people.

3: According to the National Restaurant Association, Utah has the lowest rate of restaurants per capita with 4,691 restaurants at a rate of 0.0017 restaurants per person.

What it fails to do is make the link between these three seemingly unrelated facts. Utah is host to the world's first KFC in Salt Lake City, and so, why would Utahns want to live anywhere else, eat at any other restaurants and even buy food anywhere else?

We arrived from Idaho in the North, bathed in glorious sunshine. If Kentucky was Mecca then Salt Lake City is surely Medina. Tourists throng here ostensibly to see the imposing edifices built by the Mormons, or so the church tells us. The truth is far more simple, they have come to visit 3,890 South State Street, the location of the world's first KFC opened by franchisee Pete Harman in 1952.

The original building was replaced in 2004 by a super KFC cum museum cum conference venue, and is also home to a fabled all you can eat KFC buffet. It is a strange venue, seeming to operate operates quasi independently keeping some of the original Harman's branding side by side with the usual KFC livery.

Inside was large and clean. There were specially designed tables, whose tops feature historical KFC photo's and documents. There was even a conference suite available for hire and a few museum pieces were scattered about here and there, such as one of the Colonels white suits in a glass case, and, most excitingly there was a gift shop.

Outside was a large parking lot with a paved area and some tastefully landscaped borders. the centerpiece of these gardens were the bronze statues of Harland with Harman, a popular attraction amongst the store's visitors. The store also boasted a bucket atop a pole emblazoned with the words " World's first KFC"

The Colonel's all you can eat buffet was the centrepiece of this cornucopia(sadly featuring no boneless chicken items, & so denied to pariahs such as myself) We had seen one or two advertised but hadn't really believed that they could actually exist, to see it for ourselves was just emotionally overwhelming. It brought to mind the scene from Willy Wonka, except this played out in my head as being with the Colonel as he opens a large door with the words, "Ladies & Gentlemen, Boys & Girls. . . . . . The Chicken room!" In which everything you see is made of Original recipe chicken.

Satiating our hunger with the colonels offerings we then pressed our faces up against the glass at the gift shop. Many things here had the dual Harman's/KFC branding but two particular items jumped out

1: a Colonel Sanders style long black bowtie and 2: the chance to own my very own relic. The manager Tracy Gingel had saved some bricks from the demolition of the original building and was offering them for sale to the faithful. We clamoured to purchase ours and watched with awe as he diligently packaged our bricks into a chicken box whilst regular diners looked on confusedly. Tracy and I chatted Chicken for a short while before it became time to leave.

And with that we drove off into the desert towards the West.

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

KFC Paninis: The Gourmet Lunch

Monday 27th April saw the launch of KFC's new time limited offer, (TLO) Paninis, strap line: The Gourmet Lunch.

It just so happened that this was the very day I'd planned a trip to KFC's Stourbridge branch and thought that whist there, I should quickly pop into the West Midlands Safari Park nearby. My friend will swear that infact the day was planned the opposite way round, which I let her keep thinking, we however all know different.

I had been promised by Jenelle Tilling, VP of marketing that this new TLO would appeal specifically to my penchant for spicy boneless chicken. She was not wrong. What she didn't know is that I have a particular fondness for chutney too, and here we have a product containing a Zinger Chicken Fillet & fire roasted spicy pepper chutney.

My Spicy Chicken Panini arrived promptly in an elegant brown and orange paper bag incorporating a cellophane viewing window through which you can whet your appetite whilst on the way to your table.

Having opted for the spicy version I found, ensconced within my panini roll, an entire Zinger Fillet cut length ways to expose the juicy Chicken within, and allowing me to see a rich seam of zing marbling the meat. This was topped with melted cheese and finished with a smothering of fire roasted spicy pepper chutney.

The Panini was long, hence the need to cut the chicken lengthways and so provided a sizable portion. The use of a new type of bread was an interesting change to the usual Sesame Kaiser bun. It was light but perhps a tad dry towards the edges where there was a low concentration of moist sauce and cheese. However a dunk in gravy (3 Step) soon solved that minor quibble.

There was a generous helping of both cheese and chutney and the spice of the chutney complemented the Zing superbly. Towards the centre the burger continued to improve. With this in mind I employed a dual end approach to the eating in order to finish on a high. The highlight was the final bite containing maximum concentrations of all ingredients.

Marketed as the "Gourmet Lunch" the Panini really does offer a chic(ken) element to KFC, encompassing style and sophistication, and the idea of a quick light lunch on the go. The use of high end ingredients such as fire roasted pepper chutney or a sunblushed tomato sauce also helps to reinforce this chic image.

If anything perhaps the Panini was a little long and could have been better prepared using 2 or 3 Mini Fillets to ensure a more even distribution of Chicken. It also lacked that familiar crunch of hash brown to which I am a slave. Finishing my meal with a bite of Zinger Tower it was only then that I felt I was home.

KFC Paninis 7/10

The Panini comes in two varieties, Spicy or Italian Chicken. Retailing at 3.49 each or4.49 for a meal, the Spicy Panini uses a Zinger fillet and the Italian an Original Recipe fillet.

The Panini is an LTO and will be available for roughly 6 weeks when we can expect its replacement, starting June the 8th.

Stourbridge KFC is a double decker branch with an upstairs seating area. It shares space in a building with a branch of Halfords and also the bathstore. It was a clean and modern branch with attentive staff and notably clean tables.

It also sits within the trial area for KFC chillers which I was thrilled to be able to try. I opted for the cookie crush which was enjoyable if not in need of a slight amount of extra creaminess.

Of course the usual test applied, as well as trying the new TLO a Zinger tower was also ordered and the Stourbridge branch I'm pleased to say passed with flying colours. This is a restaurant the town should and can be proud of.

Zinger Tower 8/10

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

KFBloggin's KFC HQ trip - Part 3

We left you previously with the appalling revelation that DG does in fact NOT EAT CHICKEN ON THE BONE. If you think you’re shocked, imagine what our good hosts for the day were thinking. I’m almost certain I saw a small gravy coloured tear emerge from the head of HR’s eye. But undeterred he was not. Within mere moments he had left the room in order to ensure Zinger Towers were on the menu for our test kitchen lunch. Time passed slowly while he was out of the room. Minutes dragged on like hours. Just as we were about to give up all hope, he returned.

"It’s ok guys, I’ve secured some Zinger Tower burgers for lunch"

Relieved, we all sat back in our chairs.

"There was one hitch though. We're out of buns"

Good lord! Surely the Colonel’s own test kitchen shouldn’t have run out of buns, what was to happen? A bunless burger? Perhaps we could use hash browns in place of the bread?

“But don’t worry, we’ve sent a very senior finance director down the road to pick some more up for you from the local branch”

This right here my readers is what it feels like to be chicken royalty. So, the meeting was up and we made our way to the test kitchen with a pool of drool trailing our every move.

"Welcome to the kitchen guys, I’m Chris Fells, Product Excellence Director"

And so it was that we met the man whose job it is to eat KFC multiple times a day (look out for a further post on this incredible individual soon). As soon as we entered the facility the smell hit us like a fried chicken punch to the face. How on earth the office workers sat just outside the doors managed to ever get any work done is beyond us. Lunch was awaiting us in a boardroom situated within the test kitchen itself, giving us a whole new appreciation for the notion of working lunches. As we sat down to we were informed that the room was lit with special lighting to ensure that the product could be inspected as if being eaten in a glorious summer’s cornfield. This was surely true dedication on HQ's part?

Before even a bite reached our quivering lips, a group of people entered the room. It was at this point that we were introduced to none other than the UK KFC managing director himself, Mr Martin Shuker, as well as Luis Perl, Senior Brand Manager and Jenelle Tilling, VP of Marketing. I myself had the distinguished honour of being seated next to Martin and striking up a fascinating conversation about the history of the Zinger Tower Burger (launched in 1998 dontchaknow), a product launch he personally oversaw. Martin also informed me that he visited at least 25 branches a week, a feat even Obad himself is yet to equal.

Yes, the chap in the shirt to the right of the photo really is the KFC UK MD.

Lunch was served. Piping hot OR chicken and fries were carried in on lavish serving plates by Nicola Fenn, Quality Assurance Technologist and the UK’s greatest KFC chef. Describing the food as delicious doesn’t even begin to do it justice and yet just as we were thinking this couldn’t get any better and DG was running out of skin to pick from the meat, the Zinger Towers arrived. We can safely say that these were the greatest ZTs we had ever tasted, even surpassing the famed Fleet Services branch’s offering.

DG had previously and never again will be this happy

Ladies and Gentlemen, we had truly arrived in chicken heaven.

Join us next time for a guided tour of the testing facilities.

Paninis hit the big time

Spotted yesterday in the Farringdon, London branch and already sampled by this very blogger back in November, Paninis are on the menu nationwide in Spicy and Italian chicken varieties.

Look out for a full report from DG very soon.

KFC releases delicious new product!

It is with no small measure of excitement that KFBloggin' announces the (long-rumoured) launch of KFC's newest product range! Firstly, and perhaps most shockingly we have this news straight from the hallowed inter-pages of KFC's American website.


Yes indeed, after the products sucess in certain asian countries the healthier food movement has reached even the chickeny walls of KFC's original stores! Lauching april 27th (whereupon dedicated fans can visit any participating U.S branch for a free sample) this new form of kentucky chickenage is rumoured to contain nearly half the calories of a traditionally coated drumstick. Indeed, the website shows happy, faintly ridiculous dancing customers metaphorically EXPLODING with energy after partaking of the golden-grilled goodness.

Readers of this blog might like to visit the website, play the ddr-kfc game, laugh at the dancers/chefs in the videos and, "LOL" at the jokes about coupons (KFC reaching out to an internet based audience - say it ain't so!). But all this show and bluster fails to prevent this blogger from getting to the root of the problem -

Is it any good?

Rest assured, we here at KFBloggin' HQ will not rest until a proper taste test has been carried out. And on the off chance that the product IS sucessful - will we be seeing it soon in English stores? Our sources say - probably!

What do you think KFC fans? Delicious innovation or disgusting mistake that would make the Colonal roll over in his grave?

Thursday, 23 April 2009

The KFC Cure...Fact or Fiction? Part 1: Hypothesis

After a heavy night out on the drink, the only sane recourse the following day is to pay a visit to the nearest House of Harland, and purge that foul taste of beer and kebab from your mouth with copius amounts of chicken. Amongst the KFB team this has been well documented and, for many years, religiously practiced almost every Saturday or Sunday morning. I recall one particular time when a friend, close to tears because of the state of his hang over, purchased a Fully Loaded box meal and layed it out in front of him in an elaborate fashion. He then spent the rest of the day slowly consuming every morsal until finally, he was cured...and it is this 'curing' property that I am going to investigate in an experiment which I have dubbed - The KFC Cure: Fact or Fiction?

The term 'KFC cure' has been coined by the KFB team as a way of expressing one's need to visit the colonel for recovery or curing purposes, an example here:
Oh god, I drank so many lagers last night...I need the cure right now!
The curing properties of secret recipe chicken are even recognised up at KFC HQ, with many of the team freely admitting that the test kitchens are often packed with hungry staff members the morning after a big night out.

So, the question I ask myself - is the KFC cure fact, or merely a fictional antidote that we have created to psychologically make ourselves feel better? And how do the curing properties of KFC compare to rival fast food merchants and other typical hang over countermeasures?

Join me again soon in the second part, where I will outline my experimental procedure and discover the truth about the KFC cure.

KF Chillers

Having been pestered for some time I have reluctantly agreed when an opportunity presented itself to allow an acolyte to make a KFB submission. From here on in, I'll let her work and pictures tell the story:

Upon recently informing DG that I would have an afternoon to kill in Reading, he immediately exclaimed
“are you going to go to KFC??”.
Surprised by the excitement with which he asked his question I asked why, as it was not on the top of my to-do list. He advised me that the Reading Broad Street branch was one of those chosen to trial the new milkshake, and if I could please try one. I duly obliged.

The product is known as a ‘Chiller’ and comes in four flavours, (Strawberry Shortcake, Chocolate Crumble, Cookie Crush & Caramel Crunch. ed.) all of a sweet variety. I opted for the Strawberry Shortcake, and watched as it was prepared. The young man serving me first filled the cup with what appeared to be the milk/ice cream, then squirted in some strawberry syrup and scooped in some shortcake. He then put it under a big whisk like thing which mixed it all together. As he was bringing it over to me I dug out my £1.99 to pay. Imagine my delight when he told me it was actually only £1.79 – there had apparently been some confusion in relation to the advertising.

However, this delight was quickly dampened when I looked at the Chiller properly. It was served in a clear plastic cup with no branding or name on it whatsoever. Further, there was a slight waste of packaging in the domed lid that came on the cup. This would only be necessary if cream on the top was an option which I do not believe to be the case. But fear not, I am reliably informed that this is due to an ‘ops shakedown’ and I imagine that the situation will be remedied if they decide to launch it across the country.

The next hurdle was the megastraw, which was an unusually large 1cm in diameter. It felt very strange in my mouth at first, if not slightly uncomfortable. Yet I persisted and tried some of the milkshake. It was much thinner than I expected but had a lovely flavour; sweet and fruity but not artificial or overpowering. There was no danger of it becoming sickly and I don’t generally have a sweet tooth. The need for the megastraw quickly became apparent due to the chunks of shortcake that it had to carry to my mouth. It performed this task flawlessly with no clogging whatsoever.

The shortcake itself was also delicious and the chunks were just the right size with a texture remarkably similar to, well, shortcake. And I was particularly impressed to note that when I was finishing my Chiller a good twenty minutes later (by which time I had become comfortable with the megastraw) the shortcake had retained its crunch. I suppose the thing I was thinking was
“would I want this to wash down my Zinger Tower?”
and the answer I quickly came to was no. This is no accompaniment to a meal, as it would not complement zing in the way Pepsi max does (as is my preference). Further, I think that the Chiller deserves to be enjoyed in its own right, perhaps as a dessert option or, as it was for me today, a nice alternative to an ice cream on a hot sunny afternoon. Next time you’re in Reading, check it out.

Chillers are currently being trialled in selected Reading and Birmingham branches and are based on a successful Australian product the Krusher. To be more palatable to the British market some name changes were made notably the dropping of the "Golden Gaytime" variety made using a popular Australian dessert clearly not carrying the same connotations as it would here in the UK. We may see a nationwide roll out this summer.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009


France, a somewhat hostile environment for fast food vendors. Subway, ubiquitous upon the British high street is seen here only seldom. The Burger King was usurped by lack of custom. Here only the strong survive, yet KFC has only a precarious foothold in the market with not even 70 stores nationwide, compared to the UK's 761 branches.

The French are, funnily enough, not very successful at resisting invaders in the traditional sense, however when it comes to imported business models they are. I determined to visit some of Paris' branches to see what was on offer. There is no organised cabal operating against KFC in France, just a handful independent vendors. In sharp contrast to the UK's independents they choose more familiar monikers under which to ply their poultry than the UK's faux American eateries.

With so few KFC's about it was quite a trek to actually locate one, but when we did that familiar feeling of excitement and anticipation welled up inside of me!

The first thing I noticed is that they call themselves restaurants, perhaps to fit in with the french proclivity for enjoying good food rather than rushing their meals. I dashed inside eager to see what the menu had to offer.

I entered what from the outside appeared to be a chic Paris bistro with its maroon awnings, and found the interior to be redolent of a Spanish villa, with whitewashed plaster stucco walls with teracotta tiles and features. I had also stepped into a thong of customers all eager to get their hands on that gallic finger lickin' chicken.

The menu didn't dissapoint providing our usual benchmark, the Zinger tower, my favourite lost product, or at least an approximation of the Blazin' Boxmaster, the Chick' fillet 2HOT4U, a large selection of puddings and of course the usual pieces and buckets. Topping off the menu was a grilled chicken burger of which there are plans to trial in the UK. This really was to prove a bonanza. I ordered.

We also picked up some S'auce Yummy' which, with a honey mustard flavour was exactly what it said it was. What made me most happy was buying a 300ml pot of sauce 2HOT4U akin to the Jalapeno mayo on our Blazin' Boxmaster so I could enjoy that KFC hot, at home.

Greedily I dived in, the Boxmaster 2HOT4U was wonderful with much more fresh tomato than in the UK but not toasted. The Zinger Tower however left a little to be desired, the lettuce, which a collaborator often praises for being without fail fresh and crispy in the UK was wilted, soggy and browning whilst the chicken was a tad dry. The Chick' Fillet was a much more substatial mini fillet smothered in spicy sauce and was a real treat. One other thing I noticed was that even the chicken pieces are offered in a choice of original recipe or spicy, adding an interesting dynamic to the menu. My dessert, a mini chocolate gataux with chocolate fondant centre was of an excellent high quality.

The meal overall was good to very good, and came with napkins featuring environmental advice telling us not to use too many, and a freshen up wipe though in rather staid unimaginative wrapping.

I left and was extremely happy to see the McDonalds exactly opposite was derelict seemingly run out of town by the competition.

Having spent some time trying to find that first branch, I was both dismayed (for my stomach was now distended from overindulgence) and excited to stumble upon another store, which seemed to be the flagship only half an hour later. There was a throng of tourists milling around and who was I to resist the Colonel's plan for me. I walked into a clean and modern branch with plasma screens extolling the virtues of freshly prepared KFC chicken, and that all important product I had yet to try. . . . the Brazer, the grilled chicken burgers rumoured to be beginning trials here in the UK.

Sadly, compared to roast chicken options I had tried in the USA this was dry with too much bread, and packing no real punch of flavour like one gets from original recipe. Nevertheless the flavour was pleasant and the lettuce situation much improved. I am sure however that Chris Fells and the product excellence team back in the UK can, and will make this a product to be reckoned with.

KFC France with its strange anglofrench menu portmanteaus (All In Ze Box meal & Boxmaster 2HOT4U) was good but it was no KFC UK.

One last event left a sour taste in my mouth too. Remember the pot of sauce I purchased? Due to my only having hand luggage on the return flight it was confiscated by airport security. Sitting near the cockpit on the flight home I could swear I heard the captain telling the tower:

"Flight 11 over: Save some of that hot sauce for me over."
"Tower over: No, it's the most delicious thing we've ever eaten over."

And so we came back down to earth with a bump, happy at least that I was back in the land of chicken that I love.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Gravy, A Special Investigation. Part 2 of 2

"With me, gravy is a mighty important thing."- Col. Harland Sanders
Just how good did the colonel think his gravy was? Well, he once told prospective franchisee & personal friend Pete Harman owner of the world first KFC franchise this about his gravy:
" This gravy's so good you can throw the chicken away and eat the gravy."

With KFC, when the gravy is good, it's very very good so why is it sometimes not as the Colonel prescribed? Part two will shed some light on the difference between the types of gravy and wonder whether gravy has been a victim of it's own success.

What you are looking at above is the finest example of KFC gravy ever witnessed by man or beast.

In fact the branch that was responsible for producing these particular tubs (Stafford Greyfriars) has sadly been closed.

Great gravy can be readily identified by its rich dark colour and flecks of pepper populating its surface. It should have a smooth texture and should not be able to be described as gloopy. It should be served steaming hot and like Original Recipe (OR) itself should include the three distinct notes, pepper, savoury and dairy and can be tasted much like a fine wine would be but without spitting.

What you are looking at above is a pot of brown.

The product of an object lesson in how not to produce gravy. Gravy like this can be described as gelatinous gloop displaying none of the fine subtle traits of the gravy above.

So, why the difference? every other fine KFC product is replicated perfectly from store to store. Gravy is the only product where (no pun intended) pot luck enters the equation and really can make or break your meal depending which type of gravy you recieve.

What you are looking at is a 'Winston CollectraMatic' one of, if not the most vital pieces of equipment in branch. This machine is responsible for filtering the fryer oil and retrieving all of those concentrated morsels of flavour, this is the machine that allows your chef to add secret recipe to your gravy. From here I'll let staff testimony tell this epic story. . . . .

"I'm a KFC worker in England. Just a quick lesson as to how the gravy is made. . . . . . Firstly there are two types, 1-step or 3-step gravy. The 1-step is a basic mix of powder and water. The 3-step is made up of powder, water and 'crackle' (filtered flour from the main fryer.) The mixture is whisked and cooked in a microwave. Once thickened up it's filtered through a very fine sieve and poured out into tubs."

and another testimonial

"I currently have a job at KFC and I can for sure tell you that it is made from the crackling, and it's made with other fresh ingredients, it's just like homemade, it's better than some powdered stuff like some people are claiming we use. It's real good stuff"

Praise indeed. So, if three step is so much better then why do we have to suffer the ignominy of one step. During a recent visit to HQ I took this question right to the top and Chief Exec Martin Shuker empathised
"You're pushing at an open door"
he said
"It's something i'd like to see in all brances all the time."
The simple and sad fact is this, there isn't enough crackling to go around and it is for this reason that no one branch will serve 3 step gravy 100% of the time. So much gravy is sold that branches run out of the crackling that gives it its delicious flavour. So lets enjoy the three step nectar when it presents itself to us and and lets hope that those boffins in the test kitchen can ameliorate the one step.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Gravy, A Special Investigation. Part 1 of 2

Bank Hey KFC in Blackpool is one of the country's most highly decorated branches replete with plaques, excellence awards and something I've seen nowhere else, the Colonel statuette awarded presumably for some outstanding achievement, possibly the gravy. For it was here one stormy Wednesday night the 10th of December 2003 that I was introduced to KFC gravy. Needless to say. . . . I haven't looked back.

Gravy for me has become an integral part of every meal for dipping chips in, pouring greedily over my burger and even slurping it down straight from the tub. Here in the UK we are very lucky to get a pot of pure unadulterated gravy, for there are countries the world over that are denied this simple human pleasure.

In countries such as the USA, Australia & Spain the only way to get gravy is as part of a side order of mashed potato and gravy with the mashed potato being by far and away the lions share of the dish.

Canada has its own regional twist, Poutine. This French Canadian dish is one of the simpler pleasures in life, French fries topped with cheese all smothered in delicious KFC gravy. Notice the Quebec brand PFK (Poulet Frit Kentucky) which was adopted in the 70s with much packaging Canada wide being dual language.

Worse than this some middle eastern nations are denied gravy in any way shape or form.

The Colonel was very particular about the standard of the gravy sold in his restaurants and even found himself in a war of words in 1971 shortly after he had sold the chain for $2m. Heublein inc. the then parent company had their gravy described by Sanders as 'Sludge' with a 'Wallpaper taste'.

Today, things are different and KFC gravy attracts much admiration with one Facebook discussion topic asking respondents:
"Which is best, KFC gravy or sex with a loved one?".
Discussion is lively, one comment likens chips dipped in KFC gravy to Mannah from Heaven. There are any number of forums trying to recreate KFC gravy but little discussion about the huge variation in quality seen in UK KFC's gravy.

For too long this taboo has stood unchallenged, nobody is willing to talk about the bad gravy. In part two there will be a full and frank discussion and dissection of gravy types , a photojournalistic investigation featuring staff, fan and head office comment and even some sage words from beyond the grave. . . . The Colonel himself, the ultimate arbitrator of good taste will have his say!

Monday, 13 April 2009

KFBloggin's KFC HQ trip - Part 2

Ladies and gentlemen. . . . . welcome to the Zinger Zone, an opulently appointed meeting and conference room on the ground floor of HQ. The large table was replete with a fine selection of Yum brands' beverages, Pepsi & Drench water amongst others.

Taking a seat, the lights dimmed and two giant plasma screens silently began screening their spectacle, a modified KFC induction presentation. David our host guided us knowledgeably through the inner workings, giving us a low down on products (including some new ones, milkshake anyone?), strategy, global perspective and a veritable Who's Who of UK Fried Chicken before the grand tour.

The tour was a, but not the, highlight of the day and encompassed the training facilities all resplendent with their fine names, (The Colonel's Kabin, Popcorn Palace etc) where we saw students hard at work learning the virtues of serving quality fried chicken. We visited all the major departments with marketing being the most interesting and finance (sorry guys) the least. However we only touched upon the test kitchens (for they were to be showcased later.) before heading back to the Zinger Zone to chat chicken with some bigwigs.

"I don't know what you've done guys, but some people pretty high up in the company want to meet you."
said Daniel Hayward, head of HR. And so it came to pass that we easily whiled away an hour and a half recounting the tale of the blog and the beautiful story of those halcyon days the chicken spent countless hours wooing us at university, helping us through the bad times and sharing the good times with us. We reminisced over friends that have passed (Hot Rods & more recently the Blazin' Boxmaster) and recounted our penitences when on pilgrimages to Preston and Kentucky. We discussed likes and dislikes where I happened to mention my shame, for which some label me a pariah. . . . . that I do not eat chicken on the bone. A shocked room fell into silence as the implications of my revelation dawned. Lunch was scheduled at 1pm and the plan was for us to eat original recipe Chicken pieces.

Would Daniel be able to get some boneless chicken?
Would there be any buns?
Would they be able to cook it in time?

and would it be great (yes of course it would)

find out in the next exciting installment. . . . . coming soon only to KFB.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Poultrygeist - Night of the Chicken Dead

Well I've watched this film for the sixth time today and it is bloody brilliant.
It has everything a chicken lover could want; Sex, chicken, zombies and gore.

Here is a short synopsis.
Some crazy Colonel builds a KFC type establishment on top of an ancient Indian burial ground. A young guy called Arbie goes to work in the restaurant as some kind of scheme to get back with his ex girlfriend.

All goes well until the chicken undead collaborate with the Indian undead to raise havoc in revenge for the genocide committed against them.

The film is visually stunning and the dialogue is well written. The acting compliments the fun nature of the film and the musical numbers are really well done too.

Overall I would give this film 5 out of 5.

It's just a plain old fashioned chicken rompathon :)

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

KFBloggin's KFC HQ Trip – Part 1

Recently, KFBloggin's team of hungry amateur journalists were offered the chance of a lifetime for any serious chicken fan – a trip to KFC UK HQ. This, is their story...

It was late at night in KFBloggin's London HQ, and the chill spring air had forced even the most die-hard KFC enthusiasts away from their forums and blogposts, and into the warmth of their beds. Suddenly, as the clocks turned past 2 am, an alarm ran out, waking us from our dreams of new KFC products and sending us staggering wearily to the door to see who could possibly be calling at this uncolonely hour. The door burst open, and in a flash of blinding light DG appeared, with news that would change our lives forever. “Get some sleep lads” he said, madness dancing in his wild eyes...

We're going to KFC HQ tomorrow!

After a few hours of restless sleep, and after DG had collapsed face down on a sofa for a while after his nightmare 6 hour journey, we awoke excitedly at 8am, and after rejecting the possibility of visiting a KFC AM for a morning pick-me-up for fear of regurgitating our delicious breakfast due to sheer joy and amazement, we quickly left our own HQ and headed to the nearest train station in order to directly proceed to another. After a final short team meeting and brainstorm on the train(storm) we arrived at our destination, the fabulous golden city of Woking. Though saddened that we did not have time to visit the towns KFC branch before our meeting, we headed directly to the imposing office-fronted edifice that houses the UK brains of the KFC operation.

Walking into the building's reception, we each felt that it appeared much as any other office, little knowing the strange and wonderful secrets that lurked within the veritable Chocolate factory of a place. Handing in our golden tickets giving our names to the receptionist, we each received official YUM! Passes for use in the building, and were left to our own devices, and the breathless anticipation of a short wait. We were soon greeted by our first team members of the day (and our first tour guides),

Daniel Hayward, UK Recruitment Manager (favourite KFC product: Hot Wings)

David Jones, HR Assistant (favourite KFC product:Blazin' Boxmaster)

Offering to show us around the ground floor, David lead us into the KFC offices, firstly through a canteen and relaxation area (where this Blogger could not help but notice that the plates , cutlery and wetwipes available were the same as those seen in your average KFC branch). A new Lavazza coffee machine was being fitted here – and we would hear more on that issue later. Past that, we winded our way down a corridor, and paused for a moment to remark upon the doors to the various meeting rooms and office spaces, each carrying the name of a KFC or YUM! group product, such as the delicious, “Zinger Zone.” All too soon, we had arrived at our destination, just in time for our first meeting. Soon, all the mysteries and questions that we had could, and would be solved by some of the biggest KFC experts in the country. Excitedly, we gripped the door handle, and turned it, opening the door to our first meeting of the day...
Join us again soon for part 2, where the mysteries and wonders of KFC will be laid bare...

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Kentucky Fried Text

I am frequently sent small missives from friends and acquaintances by text message when they are in a branch of KFC. Most are just a fun way of staying in touch, but some, & one in particular I received the other day really highlights the hold the delicious finger licking flavour has over people, making them drop whatever they're doing in pursuit of happiness:

"At one of Vanessa's friends weddings at the moment, the service is going on as we speak. . . . . I'm across the road at KFC"