Taco Bell introducing more upscale menu items

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Taco Bell, known for its inexpensive fare and late-night business, is trying to go more upscale.

The chain said Wednesday it plans to roll out a menu addition created by celebrity chef Lorena Garcia early next month at its nearly 5,600 U.S. restaurants.

New items feature black beans, cilantro rice, citrus- and herb-marinated chicken and cilantro dressing.

Taco Bell executive Brian Niccol calls the items "gourmet Mexican." It's a venture onto the turf of casual-dining chains such as Chipotle Mexican Grill and Qdoba Mexican Grill.

It's a departure from such standards as tacos, burritos and chalupas that target Taco Bell's core young-adult customers and will remain mainstays on the menu.

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