• Tuesday, May 17, 2016

    All You Can Eat KFC Buffet

    A world without KFC is a world not worth living in. Maybe. The first KFC was debuted at the World Expo in Osaka, Japan in 1970. Since then, it's been integrated into Japan (with some menu changes). KFC is delicious, and you may be thinking what could be better than a bucket of chicken? ...How about as much KFC as you want? 

    Yes, you read right. All you can eat KFC. A KFC buffet. Marcus and I journeyed to this magical dreamland located in Expo City, Osaka. (Close to where KFC first entered the country.) After taking three different trains, we finally made it...

    Only to find that they were packed. Packed to the point where they had a guy with a clipboard outside turning people away. The clipboard he was holding was meant to take reservations, but the two pages attached were full (with a few names and phone numbers written in the margins) and they we couldn’t even put our names down. Dejected and upset because we had arrived five hours too early for dinner, we wandered around Expo City trying to figure out what to do.

    Forty minutes later, after exploring the Pokemon Gym for a bit, we decided to try and make dinner reservations because we didn’t come all that way for nothing. Surprisingly, we talked to clipboard-man (no longer carrying his clipboard) and he lead us inside. Our best guess is that majority of those people got tired of waiting and found somewhere else to eat. Works for me. I was surprised to find that it wasn’t super crowded when we got there, and it wasn’t nearly as big as I thought. I guess that makes sense, though. Imagine having to run a KFC tabehoudai for a normal restaurant size. Yikes.

    Why do I see empty tables?!

    A big reason we wanted to go for lunch was because it was much cheaper. (Plus, we’d be too full for dinner so it’s like two meals for the price of one!) Lunch prices are 1,980 yen (less than $20 USD) and children are almost half that. You can also get an all you can drink alcohol set for 1,070 yen extra (about $10). The time limit for lunch is 80 minutes.

    If we were to go for dinner, the price jumps up almost to around 2,500 yen (a bit less than $25) and the time gets cut. So lunch is definitely your best option... 

    My biggest gripe with KFC is that they only have original recipe. I’m not knocking it, but sometimes you crave that extra crispy... That day was one of those days. Luckily, the KFC buffet seems to offer a bit more than what a normal Japanese KFC does. They had chicken (and you could choose which piece you wanted) in a bunch of different varieties.

    They also offered a variety of sides. Put potato in anything and I’ll love it basically. So, seeing my favorite root prepared in a variety of different ways was beautiful... Classic French Fries, twisted fries... Amazing. However, still no mashed potatoes. WHY. 

    Along with that, there were a variety of classic chicken pairings like mac and cheese (don’t waste your stomach space on it), biscuits and corn, along with some Japanese originals like a tomato stew and a seasonal vegetable fried rice. I stuck with the classics, though, and wasn’t disappointed. 

    They also had an okay selection of pastries for dessert and an ice cream section that was almost completely depleted by the time I finished with chicken. There was also a toppings station for your biscuit in case you decided to cover it in chocolate syrup, strawberry jam, and whipped cream instead of eating it plain. I was a fan of the salad bar, which housed better quality lettuce than salads I’ve paid for at Saizeriya. There was a drink bar with the basics, and it was a pleasant surprise to find out that all you can drink soda/coffee/tea/juice was included in the initial price tag.

    I ended up only being able to do two plates. At KFC, I can do two pieces tops (plus a tub of mashed potatoes and two to three biscuits). Especially for the price of KFC in Japan, I feel like I got my money’s worth. 

    I think Marcus did three plates before throwing in the towel. There was a little bucket on the table to throw your bones and extra garbage in, which I thought was a nice idea, especially because I hate having leftover bones on my plate after I’m done with that piece. I would occasionally watch the tables next to us and found everyone’s different strategies for tackling this were very interesting. Some did slow and steady, while some went hard and were in and out in less than half an hour.

    I do have to say that after going to that KFC all you can eat, I didn’t want to eat KFC (or any chicken) for a long time... And I was so thirsty afterwards, even though I was drinking liquids the entire time. I guess it was all that extra sodium. But, bottom line is that the food is good, the price isn’t outrageous for what you’re getting, and it’s an experience you’ll never get anywhere else. The only shame is that it’s kind of a ways away from downtown Osaka city.

    ケンタッキーフライドチキン ららぽーとEXPOCITY店
    Japan, 大阪府吹田市千里万博公園2-1

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