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Krystal is adding maple bourbon flavored milkshakes to its menu next week.

The Krystal Company will unveil a new Southern-inspired maple bourbon milkshake next week as part of its menu expansion of "playfully Southern" recipes.

The temporary menu add, which debuts Sunday at most of Krystal's 350 restaurants, does not contain any bourbon or other alcohol. But it does offer a sweet bourbon flavor that company president Paul Macaluso says is part of Krystal's efforts to expand beyond just its signature square Krystal burger.

Krystal's new maple bourbon hand-spun milkshake is made with real milk and soft-serve ice cream.

"The maple bourbon sauce uses pure, grade A maple syrup sourced from both the United States and Canada," said Brandon Freeman, Krystal's senior manager for culinary innovation. "I'd describe the flavors of bourbon as caramel, oak, charred oak, toffee and vanilla."

While 80 percent of Krystal's non-breakfast orders include Krystal burgers, limited time offers like the Bourbon-flavored milk shake are part of Krystal's attempt to freshen its appeal and reverse two years of slowing sales for the fast-food chain.

Macaluso said limited time offers like the bourbon-flavored milkshakes help boost transaction totals in Krystals by as much as 40 percent.

Krystal introduced Pimento Cheese Bites and Frozen Lemonhead Slushies made with real Lemonhead candies in June as part of its limited-time summer menu which ended in August.

Previous noteworthy Southern menu items include a Country-Fried Steak Krystal, Tabasco Krystal, Lemon Ice Box Pie Shake and Banana Pudding Shake.

"We know that our guests crave new and vibrant flavors and have come to expect our menu innovation to be playfully Southern," Macaluso said. "Our new Maple Bourbon Shake over-delivers on that expectation and is absolutely delicious!"

Krystal began in downtown Chattanooga in 1932 and is now the second oldest fast-food chain in America (behind only White Castle). The company operates 27 restaurants in the Chattanooga area.

Contact Dave Flessner at dflessner@timesfreepress.com or at 757-6340.

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