Chicken-fried fast-food concept KFC is expanding its fast-casual concept slowly but surely: Most recently, in a Sydney, Australia restaurant that plans to serve beer alongside fried chicken. The Daily News reports the upcoming KFC Urban "concept store" will serve beer and cider, in a manner similar to the chain's Canadian test concepts known as KFC Fresh. The KFC Fresh brand, with two restaurants in Toronto, offers Canadian beers to pair with "healthier" dishes like chicken salad bowls (with fresh mango salsa and "authentic" cilantro rice) and guacamole-topped burritos. As the NYDN points out, its branding uses phrases associated with the artisanal food movement, like "hand-breaded" and "kitchen-fresh."
Of course, some — including New South Wales's The Age — are suggesting the new fast-casual restaurant is the brand's attempt to lure in the ever-finicky millennial market. (The newspaper describes the Toronto restaurants' interior design as "hipster.") Unfortunately, there's no word if KFC plans to bring its beer-pouring restaurants to the U.S. anytime soon (its stateside fast-casual concept KFC Eleven currently does not), but it wouldn't be unprecedented. Chipotle Mexican Grill added beer and margaritas to its menus in 2013, while fellow test concept U.S. Taco Co., also owned by KFC parent company Yum! Brands, plans to add an "urban taproom" to future locations.