Subway serving falafel, fast-food restaurants fail to "stay in their place"
|A falafel foot-long? Is Subway too far out of its wheelhouse?|
But some of the additions--Taco Bell's partnerships with Cinnabon and Jimmy Dean to add new breakfast items, Dunkin' Donuts' foray into sausage-pancake pigs in a blanket--as well as Starbucks' plans to start pouring wine and serving dinner and McDonald's new oatmeal are adding up to a trend that Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Johnson describes as fast-food enterprises "failing to stay in their place."
As evidence, Johnson cites:
• Subway's new falafel sandwich
• Domino's Buffalo wings, pasta bowls, sandwiches, and "chocolate lava crunch cake"
• McDonald's "cappuccino"
• Noodles & Co.'s sandwiches
Restaurateurs often struggle with writing menus that will attract the most customers as well as finding a balance between doing just a few things (and executing them with excellence) and trying to offer something for everyone. Johnson sees the recent menu creep as a sign that fast-food chains are feeling squeezed:
Even if it doesn't get that bad, it just feels wrong and, frankly, a little desperate. Domino's doing breadsticks, I get: It is total carbohydrate overkill, but it's the same food family. Domino's offering chicken appendages and a fancy dessert "with molten chocolate on the inside" makes me wonder if the chain is suffering an identity crisis.
Would you order a falafel from Subway, or will you stick with the Veggie Delite and wait to eat the fried chickpea balls till your next trip to Falafel King?