Taco Bell, the go-to, open-all-night solution for a taste for tacos that creeps up on you at midnight is known for its drive-thru service. So it might make little sense for new Taco Bell restaurants, 300 to 350 locations in fact, to open without drive-thru options. That's kind of their bread and butter, or their nachos and salsa, as it were.
The brand is planning to open several “cantinas” without that fast food flair by 2022 in big cities like New York, Nashville and Detroit over the next few years, focusing on urban areas. They're going to be much more decorated affairs, with open kitchens, digital menus and plenty of other niceties that you probably don't see very often at your hometown Taco Bell, unless you already live near a very special one or some such.
But you can't just take something like the drive-thru away and give nothing back in return. That's where Taco Bell is going to make a whole lot of new cantina visitors happy. These new locations will be selling beer, wine, sangria and new slushies called Twisted Freezes spiked with tequila, vodka and rum. Hopefully they've got some interesting concoctions that also include Mountain Dew Baja Blast, which is undoubtedly Taco Bell's best drink.
Taco Bell is known for its unorthodox recipes, like the chain's latest Naked Taco creation, which is essentially a breakfast taco made with a fried egg as the taco shell, or a spicy burrito with cayenne pepper-flavored popping candy nestled among the beans and rice. This new initiative will probably serve as a super popular decision for the Tex-Mex brand, but it'll definitely be weird to see the restaurants without those handy drive-thrus so no one has to see how many tacos you're ordering on your own at 2 a.m. It's none of their business, anyway.