Taco Bell will now expand its menu offerings, but instead of extending the dollar menu, the restaurant chain plans to go upscale.
After crossing paths with celebrity chef Lorena Garcia, Taco Bell has announced a new expanded menu due out in July. Instead of throwing another dollar taco on the menu, the fast food chain has decided to go in a more "gourmet" direction.
Customers accustomed to and very fond of the cheap late night fair need not worry because the old items will remain in place. The new items will instead compete with other Mexican styled restaurants like Q'doba and Chipotle Mexican Grill. Inspiration for the new menu has been attributed to Garcia.
"She brought a lot of new thinking, a lot of fresh approaches to our ingredients that change the flavor profile of the brand," Taco Bell executive Brian Niccol said, referring to the new menu items as "gourmet Mexican" food.
Some of the new menu items include a Cantina Burrito Bowl or a Cantina Burrito, offered with chicken or steak. Bigger and hopefully better, the cost of the items will range upwards of $5, according to USA Today. Side dishes will include chips and pico de gallo or corn salsa, chips and guacamole, or black beans and rice.
"If I wanted food like Qdoba and Chipotle, I'd go to Qdoba and Chipote, not Taco Bell," TwentyFourSeven questioned on the USA Today blog.
However, Niccol hopes to bring in new customers that would like to have similar options at Taco Bell, and it's risk free. In attempt to gain new customers and keep the old ones, Taco Bell will offer a full refund on food that customers dislike -- although that hasn't happened yet.
"Our experience has been when they try it, nobody's returning them," Niccol said.