Review of KFC Colonel’s Christmas Burger
Colonel’s Christmas Burger (aka Festive Burger for 2019):
What they say:
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas now that KFC has launched their first ever Colonel’s Christmas Burger, encouraging customers to ditch the turkey in favour of its Finger Lickin’ Good chicken – because let’s be honest, who actually likes turkey anyway, right?
Adding some Zing’le bells to the season, the Colonel’s Christmas Burger will be made up of the nation’s favourite Christmas flavours, giving the traditional Christmas dinner a fresh, exciting twist.
The Original Recipe fillet will be layered with crispy hash brown, cheese and lettuce – and will be slathered with the traditional sweet flavour of cranberry sauce. What’s more, it’s packed full of delicious stuffing mayonnaise, giving it a delightful kick of sage and onion! Just make sure you don’t forget to order a side of KFC’s famous gravy, which combined with the Colonel’s Christmas Burger, creates the ultimate Christmas meal… thankfully without a Brussel sprout in sight!
Calories: 635 kcal.
Back in October, we travelled down to London to visit a branch of KFC for a special invite-only menu hack event – more on that here.
The behind-the-scenes kitchen tour and opportunity to build our own creation were fantastic experiences, but we also had an exclusive preview of a brand new product at KFC – The Colonel’s Christmas Burger.
We were some of the very first in the UK to sample KFC’s first ever festive limited time offer, SEVEN weeks before it launches in restaurants on Monday 28th November.
Fans of fast food chains have become accustomed to Christmas-time burger specials such as the McDonald’s Festive Feast or Winter Warmer or the Burger King Winter Whopperland promo. So KFC-lovers who have felt left out at this time of year are in for a treat in 2016.
Aesthetically it doesn’t scream of the festive season. In fact, it pretty much looks like any other KFC burger, with the standard bun, lettuce and cheese slice.
I’d hoped for some attempt to be made to make the bun more “Christmassy” or Festive if you prefer, but this is not the case. Although this isn’t exactly something exclusive to KFC’s Colonel’s Christmas Burger.
And then you have the lettuce and cheese which again isn’t entirely required on a festive-inspired burger. Those out there saying there should be something like shredded sprouts or similar, it’s very unlikely to happen because a) operationally it’s not viable and b) its unlikely to be a popular ingredient with the majority of KFC’s core customer base.
Saying all of that though, when you actually taste this latest LTO it does have a very clever association with the festive season. And that is primarily from the new sage and onion mayo on the build.
This is actually pretty fantastic. It’s the real defining taste of the Colonel’s Christmas Burger and despite my initial scepticism, the sage flavour really comes through… and does surprisingly taste like stuffing. I would recommend trying this burger for that mayo alone.
The other festive element is the cranberry sauce which is on the crown of the bun. This provides a real sweetness to the Colonel’s Christmas Burger and contrasts against the savouriness of the chicken, hash brown and sage and onion mayo.
The sweet, fruity cranberry is actually bordering on a watered-down jelly compared to a “sauce” and is certainly different to anything KFC have ever done in the UK before.
So again, what actually makes this a Christmas-time burger?
The clever thing going on here is the combination of chicken fillet, hash brown (a tenuous linkage with roast potatoes) and the two sauces.
If you look past the appearance, which fails to invoke Christmas imagery in my mind, the flavours of the Colonel’s Christmas Burger do actually work. It’s never going to be like making your own Christmas leftover sandwich at home, but for a KFC version it is very good.
Don’t expect a turkey special next year either. Operationally it makes no sense whatsoever to try and offer something other than their core product – chicken.
Personally, I don’t believe the lettuce is required on this build, and the cheese is purely there for textural requirements. Ignoring those two elements and the lack of a visual representation of the festive season you’ll certainly find something different at KFC this Christmas.
The combination of Original Recipe chicken fillet, with the hash brown, cranberry sauce and sage and onion mayo work well together and for a high street chain, makes for an enjoyable fast food adaptation of a festive burger.
The Colonel’s Christmas Burger is available at KFC restaurants across the UK and Ireland from 28th November until 1st January 2017.