Taco bell has announced new urban Wicker Park location in Chicago will open on September 22. The San Francisco location opening is unclear but it is also expected to begin operations later this month.
Dubbed Taco Bell Cantinas, urban locations are meant to engage millennials who live in inner-city areas. The Cantina name will only be used for urban units.
Both locations will serve beer and wine but the Wicker Park menu will also include Twisted Freezes made with rum, tequila, and vodka.
Beer and wine will cost around $4, while Twisted Freezes will range from $6.19 to $7.19 depending on choice of liquor.
Unlike regular Taco Bell restaurants, Cantina menus will include shareable Mexican style appetizers like Chili Cheese Nachos, Rolled Taco Platter, mini quesadilla nachos and chicken tenders.
Food will be served in baskets unlike normal quick service restaurant cardboard packaging.
New concepts come in part of an pledge to add 2,000 restaurants by 2020 to their current portfolio of 6,000 units.
Most quick service restaurant center around stand alone locations with drive thru capabilities and historically Taco Bell modeled restaurants after this fashion. So when customers requested “urbanization,” the fast food restaurant chain decided to provide restaurant where millennials mostly reside and can easily be accessed by foot.
Compared to traditional 2,000-2,500 square feet restaurants, Cantinas are slightly smaller at roughly 1,800 square feet.
Cantina locations aim to capture the local feel of surrounding neighborhoods. Taco Bell’s Wicker Park restaurant contracted local street artist, Revise CMW, to paint a mural as decor.
The San Francisco location, which is near AT&T Park features various large digital screens where patrons can watch sport games.
Taco Bell also announced it modeled Cantina locations to adhere customers demand for transparency. Consumers are more interested in what they are digesting and how it is made compared to other time periods. Cantina kitchens will be exposed for clientele to view the preparation process.
Chicago and San Francisco aren’t the only metropolitan areas the quick service chain hopes to infiltrate. Taco Bell is also targeting areas in New York, Boston, Ohio, or Columbus.
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