With over 6,000 locations globally, stoners with the munchies can “make a run for the border” in 26 different countries. There’s probably a Taco Bell next door right now. Just look out the window. See? There it is. But that’s probably just another garden variety, run of the mill, “nothing to see here, folks” Taco Bell, the kind that occupy food courts and strip malls everywhere. Just another place to get a burrito and try to beat the counter top coin game. Ho hum.
But is there something greater awaiting the Taco Bell loyalist, located somewhere just beyond the horizon? Are there, in fact, inspirational or even aspirational Taco Bells in this world? Yes, it turns out. A thousand times yes. Or, at least, 12 times yes. The fast food chain has prepared a BuzzFeed-esque guide to what it calls “12 Beautiful Taco Bells You Never Knew Existed.” From a two-story Taco Bell in Tokyo with its own anthropomorphic “Mr. Taco” mascot to a full-fledged, alcohol-serving Taco Bell Cantina in Chicago, these are some truly uppity fast food joints.
Appropriately, several of the stops along this particular tour are located in the great state of California. Any true Taco Bell-themed pilgrimage should begin at 7112 Firestone Blvd. in Downey, California, site of the chain’s very first (and still existent) restaurant.
The Golden State is also home to Taco Bell corporate headquarters in Irvine and a truly stunning location in Lathrop where the decor has not been updated since the 1990s. Apparently, this is some kind of selling point for the place.
So geometric. Meanwhile, the theory that “everything’s bigger in Texas” applies manifestly to this mammoth, imposing Fort Worth Taco Bell.
The world’s most picturesque Taco Bell, however, must be the one in Guatemala City that occupies a historic 6,415 square foot brick building at 9a Calle 00-50, Zona 14. One can only imagine how much better the Doritos Locos Tacos and Cinnamon Crispas must taste in such a majestic setting.