Last Monday as I was absent-mindedly walking past the KFC at Arcadia and High Street, a homeless lady who loves my dog and whom I therefore always wave to started screaming at me. More disappointed than alarmed, I slowly removed my headphones to take in what she was so exercised about.

Last Monday as I was absent-mindedly walking past the KFC at Arcadia and High Street, a homeless lady who loves my dog and whom I therefore always wave to started screaming at me. More disappointed than alarmed, I slowly removed my headphones to take in what she was so exercised about.

"Free chicken! Free chicken! They're giving away that new grilled chicken today, and it's really good!" she shouted as she hopped and pointed to the Colonel's palace.

Figuring I've certainly had worse sources of culinary advice, I turned toward the corporate chicken store. But when I noticed a line of folks stacked right up to the door, I told my friend I'd already eaten and then began beating a quick path back toward my home.

Once there, I poked through the mailbox only to find a coupon for free KFC grilled chicken. Sometimes, I thought, you just can't fight fate.

What I tried: KFC Grilled Chicken ($3.99 for a two-piece meal)

What's in a name?: When you ply your food trade in a nation bulging with obese people - and your middle name is fried - maybe your future sometimes looks like an uphill battle you're not in great shape to climb.

That's surely why this company quietly reduced its once proud title to mere initials and constantly peppers its consistently-in-flux menu with items like "Tender Roast," "Popcorn Chicken" and a curiosity called a "Toasted Twister."

In any event, my recent visit to KFC showed the place trying hard to undermine its very claim to fame by posting messages like "taste the unfried side of KFC," "Unthink lunch" and "Unthink dinner" - the "un" stressed in stand-out dark letters. It was as if McDonald's suddenly tried to hide its golden arches with a big, red huffing smokestack.

Grill Mark of Kain-tucky: After swapping my paper coupon for free meat and eating the somewhat surprising results, I had to go back to double-check my findings, and so purchased a two-piece meal (comes with a biscuit and two sides) for $3.99. It confirmed that this KGC stuff ain't bad at all.

Though a breast piece was a bit chewy and a tad dry, a thigh and wing were not. All came with crispy dark skins and grill-type indentations minus the darkening. That's probably because KGC is "grilled" in an oven, and in fact it tastes roasted, not grilled. It also tastes of a nice touch of herbs, which included rosemary.

Would I eat it again?: Considering KGC contains a fraction of the fat, calories and sodium of KFC and it's about as good as most grocery-store rotisserie birds, yes.

Spot a new menu item you'd like Taste Test to try? E-mail gbenton@columbusalive.com