by Border Foods
Taco Bell’s newest, most innovative restaurant prototype, in Brooklyn Park, opened its drive-thru lanes June 7 and continues to cause buzz in the media. Most recently, Taco Bell COO Mike Grams was featured on Restaurant Business’ podcast, A Deeper Dive. Take a listen to what he has to say about Defy, “the future of digital with a hint of traditional.”
The brainchild of Border Foods’ own Jeff and Lee Engler, and a strong example of synergistic collaboration between a franchisee and Taco Bell, Defy truly defied odds with its quick construction timeline, fast forwarding from conceptual idea to a grand opening celebration in just under two years. And also becoming one positive thing to emerge out of a modern pandemic!
The excitement on opening day was obvious among event attendees, which included many of Defy’s 50-some restaurant employees; the Engler brothers; President Aaron Engler and members of the Border Foods’ leadership team; and representatives from the City of Brooklyn Park, Taco Bell corporate, and Vertical Works.
Aaron Engler declared Defy’s significance as “the first in the country, in the world, of anything like this for any quick service restaurant, not just Taco Bell.”
Mike and Brooklyn Park Mayor Lisa Jacobson also gave remarks on opening day to the crowd.
“We have over 90 restaurants, but we don’t have anything like this!” Mayor Jacobson said. “And neither does anybody else!”
The event concluded appropriately, with confetti and tacos for all. Check it out: