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Mar 11, 2012

Photo Gallery: Taco Bell Headquarters Tour

Taco Bell HQ Front
I got to tour Taco Bell headquarters in Irvine, CA recently as they were preparing for the launch of the Doritos Locos Taco. I thought I'd share some of the highlights of the tour and something I whipped up in their test kitchen (it might take a while to load, there are quite a few pictures).

Taco Bell HQ Lobby Screen
Look it's Brand Eating on a giant flat-screen TV screen in Taco Bell's lobby! Success!

Taco Bell Timeline
They have a timeline of the company along the wall leading to their dining room. They used to have a mariachi band play at every new opening and sombreros!

Taco Bell Original Menu Packaging
Back when they started, the tacos and burritos were just wrapped in plain un-branded wax paper. The cup has a bit of an art-deco look no?

Taco Bell Timeline 2
Look! That's how an Enchirito first looked when it came out; in a metal tray with olives and a whole lotta cheese.

Taco Bell HQ Game Room 1
They have a game room adjoining their dining hall. Rock Band? Check! Kinect? Wii? Check! Check! The guitars on the walls are from an MTV awards show that Taco Bell sponsored.

Taco Bell HQ Game Room 2
They have an old-school sit-down arcade machine!

Taco Bell HQ Game Room 3
Make that two arcade machines! Both with multiple games.

Taco Bell HQ Dining Room
And this is the dining room. Pretty bright, huh?

Taco Bell HQ Cafeteria 1
Yes, they do serve non-Taco Bell food.

Taco Bell HQ Cafeteria 2
But, of course, they also have a Taco Bell inside. I wonder if the employees get a discount...

Taco Bell HQ Elevator Lobby
Each of the elevator lobbies has a Taco Bell logo backlit by a different color so you don't get confused at what floor you're on.

Taco Bell Test Kitchen 1
One of three different test kitchens that they have. It was called the "Cocina" I think(aka "kitchen" in Spanish).

Taco Bell Test Kitchen 2
This is the test kitchen that we ended up using to try the new Doritos Loco Tacos.

Inside a Taco Bell Kitchen
They also gave us the full run of the kitchen to make whatever we wanted. Here's where all the cold ingredients and sauces are kept. It's identical to what you'd find in a Taco Bell restaurant.

Taco Bell Kitchen Chips and Shells
The holding bin for fried stuff: taco shells, Nacho Cheese Doritos taco shells and chips.

Custom Cheesy Explosion Doritos Locos Taco
And finally, we have my custom Doritos Locos Taco. I call it the "Cheesy Explosion Doritos Locos Taco." I added the lettuce because I thought it would be too salty with all the cheese but Taco Bell cheese is pretty mild. I added every available cheese they had in the test kitchen: nacho cheese, cheddar, and the 3-cheese blend. Like I said I thought it would be too salty but it was actually pretty good!


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5 comments :

  1. That's awesome, great post, and congrats!!

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  2. i smoked reefer once or twice livin in a stoner's paradise

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  3. Why don't Taco Bell workers use gloves when handling food?  I got very, very sick after eating at Taco Bell--more than once.  I won't eat there again until workers are wearing gloves when piling on the lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, and touching the tortillas.  NASTY, unappealing practice!

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  4. how were you able to reserve a tour at the headquarters?

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  5. I didn't although I suppose I could... I was invited there to learn about the Doritos Locos launch and other new stuff.

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