I’ve never hesitated to share my contempt for fast-food restaurants and things that frankly make people fatter when writing about the business end of food here at ValueWalk. Today, however, marks the first time that I’m going to rail against unhealthy things that should be enjoyed in moderation being stripped of the best parts. I walk everywhere, drink too much rum BUT with diet coke, and play basketball twice a week so I can eat fried chicken guilt free on occasion. If I were to ever stumble into a KFC I would be surprised, but once there I want bones in my chicken.

KFC chicken

KFC ‘Eleven’ markets the Colonel’s herbs … on fast food chick fries

Without them, it’s not fried chicken. KFC, the much maligned restaurant chain once rumored to have changed its name because of genetically modified factory chickens, which supposedly forced them to change their name from Kentucky Fried Chicken to KFC. Obviously this is/was nonsense. It was more likely a nod to America’s literacy rates and signage costs.

All that said, KFC announced today that it would open a new addition to the chain, called “KFC eleven” in an attempt to become more Millennial-friendly. The eleven is not a play on Jamie Oliver’s “15,” but a nod to the eleven herbs and spices that are the Colonel’s hallmark. The Colonel will not be present anywhere in the restaurant, as KFC hopes to shed that Southern deliciousness and add flatbread sandwiches, rice bowls, salads, and boneless chicken. Yuck.

KFC chasing the fast-casual brands

A single store located near KFC’s corporate headquarters in Louisville, KY will also be ditching the red-and-white design scheme in order to remake itself and pretend to be healthy. I’ve often been angered by KFC’s lack of beer, but think I may dislike the idea of boneless fried chicken and smoothies more.

KFC is hardly to blame for looking to reinvent itself to compete with the likes of Panera Bread and Chipotle. Fast-casual is the fastest growing sector in the food industry at present. Fast-casual chain sales rocketed 13.2% last year, compared with sales at quick-service chains, which grew a comparatively paltry 4.6%, according to Technomic.

“If we crack the code on a more contemporary expression of the brand, we could apply that systemwide,” says KFC President John Cywinski.

The last code I saw and read broken was done by Dan Brown and that left the same bad taste in my mouth as I expect from “KFC eleven”.