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Taco Bell is a fast food restaurant founded by Glen Bell on March 21, 1962 in Downey, California. It is a subsidiary of Yum! Brands, along with Pizza Hut, KFC, and Long John Silver's.

HistoryEdit

InceptionEdit

Kfc taco bell

A co-branded KFC-Taco Bell in Oscoda, Michigan

MenuEdit

Taco Bell features a vast and eclectic menu, featuring a plethora of tacos, burritos, nachos, quesadillas, beverages, and other often delicious food items. Additionally, several different value sub-menus are available, including:

LocationsEdit

IMG 0088

A Taco Bell location on the New Jersey Turnpike

LogosEdit

In early 1994, Taco Bell changed their rainbow logo to a simpler logo. However, the original logo is still being used in some locations.

References in popular cultureEdit

  • Taco Bell is featured in Demolition Man, where it is the lone restaurant to have survived the Franchise Wars; hence, it is the only chain restaurant left in the world.
  • The Onion has made numerous references to Taco Bell in its satirical headlines.
  • In the Simpsons episode "I'm with Cupid," Homer claims to have purchased and applied a temporary tattoo of the Taco Bell Chihuahua.[1]
David Letterman at Taco Bell06:32

David Letterman at Taco Bell

  • David Letterman has famously commandeered the Drive-Thru window at Taco Bell locations with often-hilarious results as a stunt on his show The Late Show with David Letterman.[2]
  • Jon Stewart's 1998 book called Naked Pictures of Famous People contains an essay called "Local News," which imagines a fictitious death of the Taco Bell Chihuahua.
    • In October 2007, Stewart lampooned the opening of the first Taco Bell restaurant in Mexico on The Daily Show.[3]

Outside the United StatesEdit

AustraliaEdit

Taco Bell first opened in Australia in September 1981, but it was ordered to change its name after the owner of a local restaurant successfully sued Taco Bell for misleading conduct.[1] The local restaurant was called Taco Bell's Casa and had been operating in Australia since the 1970s. The owner successfully argued that Sydneysiders would confuse the takeaway chain with his restaurant, and this would damage his reputation.

Taco Bell later opened in 1997 in Australia with a store in the cinema district on George St. in Sydney and a year later, in 1998, within a few KFC stores in the state of New South Wales, but by 2005, the Taco Bell brand was pulled out of the country.

CanadaEdit

Taco Bell has been present in Canada since 1981, with the first store opening in Windsor, Ontario. For some time, it was possible to order draft beer with one's order. Taco Bell offers free soda refills in its stores.

On March 31, 2011, Priszm, owner of Taco Bell (Canada), went into bankruptcy protection in Ontario and British Columbia.[2] On May 6, 2011, Priszm Income Fund was delisted from the Toronto Stock Exchange for failure to meet the continued listing requirements.[3] Since then, some Taco Bell restaurants have been closed down, including those in Guelph, Hamilton, and Cambridge, Ontario, among others.

ChileEdit

Taco Bell has 14 stores in Chile, 13 of which are operated in conjunction (and in the same facilities) with Pizza Hut. All Taco Bell stores are in shopping malls located mainly in Santiago.

ChinaEdit

Taco Bell-China-Logo

Taco Bell Grande's Logo

In 2003, Yum! Brands introduced the Taco Bell brand into People's Republic of China. The Chinese Taco Bell restaurants were not fast-food restaurants like other Taco Bells. Instead, they were full-service restaurants called Taco Bell Grande that are more analogous to a Mexican grill in the United States. In addition to the usual taco and burritos, Taco Bell Grande also served other Mexican cuisine like albóndigas (meatball soup), tomatillo grilled chicken, fajitas, and alcoholic drinks, such as Margaritas. The chain had operated three restaurants in China, two in Shenzhen and one in Shanghai. However, the Shanghai location closed at the end of January 2008.[4] One location in Shenzhen closed on February 20, 2008; the second location followed shortly after, closing on March 5, 2008.[5]

CyprusEdit

CyprusTacoBell

Taco Bell in Cyprus

A Taco Bell opened in Cyprus in December 2009 in Limassol at the MY MALL Limassol. Further restaurants are planned to be opened within the next 18 months (probably also in Cyprus' capital Nicosia).[6]

GreeceEdit

Greece's first Taco Bell opened in Athens upon the grand opening of the newly constructed Athens Metro Mall on November 30, 2010.[7][8]

IcelandEdit

Taco Bell in Iceland is operated as a part of the KFC establishment in Hafnarfjörður, suburb of Reykjavík. It was established in late 2006, after the departure of the U.S. Navy from Naval Air Station Keflavik. A second location opened in the Ártúnshöfði part of Reykjavik in November 2008.[9] The Ártúnshöfði location is now closed and replaced by a new location in the nearby area of Grafarholt (together with KFC).

IndiaEdit

India's first Taco Bell outlet opened at the Mantri Square mall, Bangalore.[10] Another outlet at the Gopalan Mall, Bangalore opened in February 2011.

MexicoEdit

Taco Bell has tried to enter the Mexican market twice. After a highly-publicized launch in Mexico City in 1992, all the restaurants were closed 2 years later. In September 2007, Taco Bell returned to Monterrey, this time, promoting itself as selling "authentic American food", but it closed in January 2010 due to low patronage.[11][12][13]

PhilippinesEdit

Taquitosjf

Grilled taquitos

Deckerjf

Double Decker Taco

Taco Bell opened its first Philippine branch on October 30, 2004 at the Gateway Mall in Cubao, Quezon City. They now have one on the ground floor and one on the 4th floor in the food court at the Gateway Mall. They have also added another branch at the TriNoma mall in Quezon City.

PolandEdit

The first Polish Taco Bell store was opened in 1993. Following an aggressive campaign of expansion, Taco Bell's efforts soon withered, and the chain withdrew from Poland shortly thereafter.

RussiaEdit

In the early 1990s, Pepsico opened several Taco Bell locations inside the Moscow metro system, including Metro Park Kulturi and Metro Komsomolskaya. This experiment lasted only a few years, but these locations live on under different ownership and a different name. Notably, they still sell burritos, although they bear little resemblance to Taco Bell burritos.

Saudi ArabiaEdit

Taco Bell has two restaurants in Riyadh and one in Khobar.

SingaporeEdit

Taco Bell in Singapore existed for a number of years, mostly as combination stores with KFC (such as the one that operated at the Funan Digital Life Mall), but in 2008, Taco Bell completely pulled out of Singapore.[14]

SpainEdit

The first Taco Bell in Spain was opened at Naval Station Rota in 2004 and is available only to those authorized to access the naval base.[15] The first Taco Bell for the general public was opened in the Islazul Shopping Mall, Madrid, in December 2008.[16] Yum! Brands announced it would open additional restaurants in Spain in early 2009 as part of a test trial for the European market.[17][18] A second location has now opened at the La Vaguada Shopping Mall, Madrid.

Another location recently opened at the Plaza Mayor shopping mall in Malaga, Spain.

South KoreaEdit

There are currently two locations in Seoul, in the Itaewon and Hongdae districts, which attract the most foreigners and college students. The two branches opened in the summer of 2010, Itaewon's branch coming first. A Taco Bell restaurant had long been a presence at the U.S. Army's Yongsan Garrison, which is off-limits to non-military people, and for a time, there was a tongue-in-cheek grassroots campaign by non-Korean, non-military foreigners in Seoul to get another Taco Bell location.[19]

United Arab EmiratesEdit

A Taco Bell opened in the United Arab Emirates in November 2008 in Dubai at the Dubai Mall.[20]

Two more locations were opened at Mirdif City Centre and Deira City Centre in 2010.[citation needed] A fourth UAE location was also planned for Bawadi Mall in the city of Al Ain.

As of February 2012, the locations at Dubai Mall, Deira City Centre, and Mirdif City Centre have all closed and Taco Bell has completely pulled out of the UAE market.

United KingdomEdit

The United Kingdom was the first European country with a Taco Bell. In 1986, a location was opened in London on Coventry Street (between Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus), followed by a second location in Earls Court near the Earl's Court tube station. One other store opened in Uxbridge, but all closed in the mid 1990s.[21] In 1994, the university food provider Compass announced plans to open stores in its university and college sites. However, only one store was opened in Birmingham University, no other stores were opened, and the Birmingham site is now closed.[22][23] There remained only Taco Bell sites in the United Kingdom in operation at the Strategic Air Command and United States Air Force bases at RAF Mildenhall and RAF Lakenheath; commensurate with existing security controls, access is restricted to relevant service personnel.[24]

Yum! Brands announced that it is considering reopening Taco Bell locations in the United Kingdom as part of a large planned expansion into Europe, with trial outlets opening first in Spain in early 2009. Yum! is taking advantage of the recent recession, which led to increasing sales at other fast food outlets; it also said there is now a greater awareness of Mexican food in the United Kingdom and that it can be successful with improved menu offerings and marketing.[17][18] The first new store opened at the Lakeside Shopping Centre on June 28, 2010.[25] Taco Bell opened a second store in Basildon on November 29, 2010 and the third in the Manchester Arndale Food Court on November 7, 2011.

On March 1, 2013, it was announced that horse meat had been found in Taco Bell's beef in the United Kingdom, hampering the chain's growth in that already-stubborn market.[26]

Other countriesEdit

Taco Bell is also present in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Guam, Aruba, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, and on AAFES military bases in Japan, Germany, Iraq, Guatemala,[27] and El Salvador.[28]

French friesEdit

Canada, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, India, El Salvador, Guatemala, South Korea, and Spain are the only countries where Taco Bell offers French fries. Different countries offer different types of fries.

Canada offers 4 types of fries: Regular, cheesy, chili cheese, and Fries Supreme (fries topped with beef chili, cheese, and chives).

The United Kingdom branches offer Mexican (seasoned) fries.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Re Taco Bell Pty Limited v Taco Company of Australia Inc [1981] FCA 219; (1981) 60 FLR 60 (22 December 1981). Austlii.edu.au. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  2. Sacha Peter, "Priszm Income Fund Declares Bankruptcy", http://divestor.com/2011/04/01/priszm-income-fund-declares-bankruptcy/, April 1, 2011
  3. CNW Staff, "TSX Delisting Review - Priszm Income Fund (QSR.UN and QSR.DB)", http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/775507/tsx-delisting-review-priszm-income-fund-qsr-un-and-qsr-db, April 6, 2011
  4. Taco Bell Shanghai Closes Shop[dead link]
  5. Adios, Taco Bell Grande. Shenzhenbuzz.com. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  6. News - Taco Bell to open first Cyprus store by December. Financialmirror.com (September 13, 2009). Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  7. Taco Bell (Greek). Athensmetromall.atcom.gr (2010). Retrieved on January 2, 2011.
  8. Bouras, Stelios (November 4, 2010). New mall in recession-hit landscape. Kathimerini. Retrieved on January 2, 2011.
  9. Nafn. 2nd location in Iceland. Tacobell.is. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  10. Taco Bell's maiden Indian outlet opening at Mantri Square mall.
  11. "Company News; Pepsico Opens A Taco Bell In Mexico City", New York Times, 1992-06-05. Retrieved on 2011-08-16. 
  12. 3:29 pm ET (October 9, 2007). Taco Bell makes a run across the border - Food Inc.. MSNBC. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  13. Quiebra Taco Bell en México - México, sociedad y política en Prodigy MSN. Noticias.prodigy.msn.com. Retrieved on 2011-08-16.
  14. Funan DigitaLife Mall. Funan.com.sg. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  15. Schonauer, Scott (April 3, 2004). Taco Bell, KFC Express set to open at Rota. Stripes.com. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  16. Noticias de Franquicias - Franquicias Hoy : Taco Bell se estrena en España en el madrileño Islazul. Franquiciashoy.es (December 18, 2008). Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Adamy, Janet. "Yum Brands Bets on Taco Bell To Win Over Customers Overseas", Online.wsj.com, November 19, 2008. Retrieved on February 9, 2010. 
  18. 18.0 18.1 Chesters, Laura. KFC and Taco Bell gain appetite for UK. Property Week. Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  19. We Want Taco Bell- EV Boyz. YouTube (2009-07-29). Retrieved on 2011-08-16.
  20. Adamy, Janet. "Yum Brands Bets on Taco Bell To Win Over Customers Overseas - WSJ.com", Online.wsj.com, November 19, 2008. Retrieved on February 9, 2010. 
  21. Marc Jacobs, Peter Scholliers, "Eating out in Europe: picnics, gourmet dining, and snacks since the late eighteenth century", Berg Publishers, 2003, ISBN 1-85973-658-0, pp.306-307
  22. Yankee retreat. CatererSearch (July 26, 2001). Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  23. Compass pilots Taco Bell unit. CatererSearch (September 29, 1994). Retrieved on February 9, 2010.
  24. Has anyone ever seen a Taco Bell in England?? - Pale Cast of Thought (blog) (June 8, 2004). Retrieved on June 18, 2010.
  25. Food chain to premiere at Lakeside. Thurrock Gazette (May 27, 2010). Retrieved on May 28, 2010.
  26. BBC News - Horsemeat scandal: Four new products test positive. Bbc.co.uk (1970-01-01). Retrieved on 2013-03-03.
  27. Restaurantes | Tacobell Guatemala. Tacobell.com.gt. Retrieved on 2012-10-18.
  28. Taco Bell El Salvador | No solo de pan vive el hombre. Tacobell.com.sv. Retrieved on 2012-10-18.

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