Sunday, 13 April 2014

KFC to launch slow-cooked pulled chicken products soon?

Word has reached us that KFC is carrying out a regional test of an all-new product line: slow-cooked pulled chicken. Apparently, trials are currently underway in Scotland. If rolled out across the UK, this will mark the first time KFC has launched a 'new' cooking technique into branch since the Brazer line of griddled chicken.

From the picture you'll find above, you'll notice that the burger appears to contain a standard looking chicken fillet in addition to the pulled chicken. That's double chicken, folks. And who can forget the wonderful result of the previous double chicken product line?

Check out the line yourself in this charming new ad and let us know if you manage to locate and sample this mysterious new beast.

We've reached out to KFC and will update the post with further information if available.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Daredevil Bites Review

KFC's Daredevil Bites are the latest offering for the UK market, and are available as part of the new Saucy Bites Variety Bucket, Daredevil Bites Box Meal, and also as a simpler meal option with just chips and a drink. Reminiscent of Hot Rods (albeit without the rod) and about three times the size of standard Popcorn chicken, these bite-sized morsels come doused in one of three hot sauces of your choice; choose from Sweet Chilli, Fiery Buffalo and Piri Piri Inferno, depending on how much heat you like. I ventured down to the Bethnal Green KFC branch to investigate.

I opted for the 2 Daredevil Bites meal, which included 2 sets of bites, chips and a drink. Staff at the Bethnal Green branch were helpful and knowledgable, clearly displaying a mastery of the current menu by offering up the choice of mixing and matching daredevil sauces - a nice touch. I ordered the Sweet Chilli and Piri Piri Inferno bites, collected my meal, and grabbed a table in the seating area.

The Daredevil Bites come delivered in separate lidded tubs, each containing 4 of the breaded chunks and with a pool of your chosen sauce at the bottom. There was enough sauce in both of my tubs to allow me to dip the bites at will, liberally coating them as I so wished. The crispy coating was more akin to ETC (Extra Tasty Crispy) than OR (Original Recipe). First up were the Sweet Chilli bites - as expected, the sweet chilli sauce was very mild (not even a hint of heat) but it did have an enjoyable taste, just like the popular asian condiment.

Moving on to the Piri Piri Inferno bites, I half expected these to be equally as mild, but I was pleasantly surprised. The first couple of bites were coated in just a drizzle of the spicy sauce, and failed to produce the desired punch I was hoping for, but upon mopping up the last of the sauce with the final bite, I soon realised my mistake as the heat kicked in. I wouldn't go so far as to call it an inferno in my mouth, but it was certainly a slow-burner and combined with the peppery, paprika flavours, produced a satisfying sensation. I think this is a brave move from KFC, as too often fast-food products labeled as "spicy" are far from it, and are actually tailored for the weak, mainstream consumer who thinks of a Chicken Korma curry as adventurous.

All in all, although the Daredevil bites aren't particularly exciting on their own, they do add an extra dimension to the existing menu and if I were to order them again I would go for the box meal or share the Saucy Bites bucket with friends. I would like to see the sauces (especially Piri Piri) put to use maybe as a topping for a Piri Piri style burger.

KFB Rating: 7/10

Have you tried the Fiery Buffalo bites? We'd love to know how they compare, let us know in the comments section below!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

KFB Asian Odyssey Part 4: India

And so we reach the final stop on our travels: India. Land of ancient history, maniac autorickshaw drivers and more types of animals wandering the streets than you're likely to find in most British zoos.
India is intense in many ways, so it came as a welcome relief to spot the Colonel's smiling face while strolling down Jaipur's busy MI road.

The restaurant itself was similar to other branches we've encountered around the world - mostly clean, decked out in the usual red hues and air conditioned (something of a rarity in India). 

We walked up to the staff at the counter and ordered a Chicken Snacker with a 7Up and a Zinger Burger meal, both upgraded to include cheese.

First up: the Snacker. Similar in appearance to a Mini Fillet from back in the UK, the Snacker was a wallet friendly 39 rupees (39p) (15R extra for cheese).  The good news ended there though. We were presented with a squashed burger accompanied by some limp lettuce and mayonnaise. According to my fellow reviewer, the chicken itself was 25% meat, 75% batter. Not a great start.

The Zinger Tower, sadly, fared no better. As with Thailand and Hong Kong, the meat was of the leg rather than breast variety. As we've previously discovered though, this in itself isn't necessarily a
negative thing. The burger comprised the chicken itself, some lettuce, the cheese we added and some mayonnaise. No spicy salsa in sight. And as we'd grown accustomed to: no hash brown.

Flavour was sorely lacking. In fact, the strongest flavour came from the cheese rather than the chicken. And without that salsa or any trace of a marinade on the meat, the Zing was utterly absent. The real lowlight was yet to come. The fries were among the worst we've ever encountered at a KFC. Luke warm and clearly left for far too long under a heat lamp, they were chewy, depressing imposters for the much maligned KFc fry.  Oh and to make matters worse, there was a small piece of plastic in the bottom of the packet (see below). 

Were it not for the fact that we were in a huge rush and really really didn't want any more fries, we'd have complained and demanded replacements. The only saving grace for the meal was the price. We paid a very wallet friendly £3.32 For all the food that day.

Taste: 2Value: 4Overall: 3

And now comes the time for reflection. What exactly have we learned from our gastronomical voyage across Asia? Well the most obvious conclusion is that the KFC in the UK beats the socks off anything we sampled. Yes it's more expensive and yes we frequently bemoan the <<lack of innovation but when it comes down to it, we should count ourselves lucky that's it's almost universally delicious. For now,  our voyage to locate the globe's most finger licking chicken 
shall continue.