Sunday, 16 February 2014

TLO Review - KFC Triple Xtra - Denton Rock

After a trip abroad on KFB business (review to follow) I was delighted on my return to the UK, not by the fact that the KFB North Office had escaped inundation by the ceaseless rain, but by the new Time Limited Offer (TLO) - the 'Triple Xtra.'

It was nice to see a genuinely new TLO, developed from the ground up with its own unique bread and sauce.

Although the name and blurb don't allude to it, preferring instead to tout its generously proportioned masculine qualities, this meal is in fact a take on the ever popular 'Club Sandwich'.

It features a new 'Dusted Rectangle' bun, lettuce, 3 x Mini Fillets, 3 x Bacon Rashers and 'Creamy Club Sauce'.

First Look:

This was a very well put together burger with almost too much chicken (can you have too much chicken? ed.) for the bun so that some was almost spilling out. The use of Mini Fillets (MF's) can be a plus by giving a more uniform filling, in contrast to the often uneven shape of the full fillet which can be plump in the middle before quickly tapering to overcooked edges. Another issue with the fillet can be 'Chicken Deserts' causing the diner to eat through huge swathes of under utilised bun. Another plus of  MF's is the increased surface area giving more delicious Original Recipe coating.

However such benefits must invariably come with downsides, one of which is the MF's propensity to fall from the bun following an ill placed oral incision that leaves a sliver of unsupported chicken in the bun.

The pluses and minuses of this particular theoretical build discussed, time to move on to the practice. As already mentioned this was well put together, and with 4.5 rashers it contained a whole 1.5 more rashers than it should have done. This sounds good but I suspect it detracted from and overshadowed the lacklustre 'Creamy Club Sauce' which had an absence of any clear flavour, providing only moisture and some binding. The burger could have benefited from more vegetable... some sliced tomato perhaps.

Special mention should go to the bun which was lovely and soft yet stayed together well. It would be welcome on the menu if its shape were modified to better suit the breast.

Overall this was good, really quite a substantial burger and is actually a brand new product, something KFB repeatedly calls for. However weighing in at £4.99 it's not cheap as no sides / extra chicken is included.

On top of this I felt they missed a trick with the advertising. Many other meals contain more food / chicken but don't tout themselves as "manly". The approach they've taken potentially alienates a female audience who may have been tempted to engage in a delicious chicken and bacon meal if it had dressed up with the more gentile and acceptable 'Club' sobriquet.

All in all this was a good offering let down by poor value for money (after all they've just shown us they can churn out MF's for a mere 60p each on Tuesdays) and the advertising.

Rating 3.5 Colonels

Denton Rock Branch

This was KFB's first visit and we'd definitely missed the lunchtime rush. As a result the restaurant was clean and the service attentive however there were a couple of major flaws.

1.When asking for water with my meal, I was told none was available but they did have Tropicana Orange juice which I took instead... I was not told that this would incur an additional 39p charge which I would have hoped would be waived as my initial healthier request was unavailable.

2. When given my meal, there was no tray liner. The tray did look clean but I really would have preferred the clean new liner which also provides the added benefit, when dining alone, of some light reading material.

Denton Rock has a lot going for it but fell short of the mark on this occasion.

KFB Asian Odyssey Part 3: Thailand

We're going to start with an apology. Despite a valiant effort, we're
ashamed to report that we were unable to sample KFC in Vietnam due to
inaccurate closing times listed on the website. No amount of pleading
with the confused security guard was going to change his mind.

In light of our failure, we decided to get KFC immediately upon
arrival in Thailand. As luck would have it we came across The Colonel
in Bangkok's old DMK airport. Having sampled KFC before in Thailand we
felt it only right to try something new this time.

Behold the Twister Crispy Nachos (and behold its slightly Cheesestring-esque chicken in the promo standee above). We've seen nachos added to the mix
on previous occasions but never before in a Twister. Contents were as
follows: 2 chicken pieces covered in what tasted like Original Recipe
coating, lettuce, a BBQ like sauce and nachos.

As with previous Thailand experiences the chicken here was seemingly
of the thigh meat variety but strangely tasteless. The BBQ sauce was
nothing to write home about and the lettuce was...well, lettuce. The
nachos fared a little better, adding some much needed flavour and
crunch. Overall though, we were disappointed by this limited edition
offering as we've sampled much better in the UK (interestingly the
fries were similar to the new, thinner UK type).

At 89baht for the Twister itself (around £1.80) we didn't really feel
it offered particularly great value for money. The only real saving
grace was that a fellow reviewer sampled the Zinger Burger which we're
glad to report was given a big thumbs up.

Taste: 4
Value: 4
Overall: 4