Illustration for article titled Taco Bell flaunts its exciting new international menu, probably just to taunt Americans
Photo: Taco Bell

Some of my favorite emails are the press releases from Taco Bell because, well, I really do love Taco Bell and appreciate reminders to think about it for a few minutes during my busy days. Yesterday I got a press release that, for a brief while, made my life: a list of amazing, innovative new menu items from around the world. At first I thought it was a part of a limited-time menu much like the McDonald’s Worldwide Favorites we all got to enjoy this past summer. After a few minutes of shuffling around my schedule to incorporate multiple trips to Taco Bell, I realized that this was not a press release about a new menu: It was a press release solely intended to let me know that these items existed, and that I can’t get them because I’m not Finnish.


At first I thought “Why should I even bother writing about these things if I can’t get them in the U.S.?”, but then I thought that if I had to suffer with the weight of this knowledge and a throbbing hunger that would never be satiated then I would need to drag other people down into this pit of despair with me. So here’s a bunch of awesome stuff that none of us can actually enjoy unless we spend several hours on a plane:

The “Oatrageous” Taco: This is just like a regular taco, but vegetarian. The signature Taco Bell ground beef—which is already 12% “not beef”—is replaced with a seasoned mixture of pulled oats and legumes. It’s currently available in Finland and Spain and will be available across all of Europe in 2020. When asked at a media event whether or not this taco will ever be available in the United States, a representative said, “Never say never,” so I’m guessing the real answer is “No.”

Cyprus Halloumi Crunchwrap: Available all across Europe for a limited time, this is essentially a Crunchwrap Supreme, but instead of meat, you get fried cheese. Fried halloumi has exploded in popularity on fast food menus across Europe to the point where the world is now facing a legitimate halloumi shortage, and still we can’t get fried blocks of cheese on anything in what’s supposedly “the greatest country in the world.”


Okonomiyaki Fiesta Menu: For a limited time in Japan you can get tacos, burritos, and Crunchwraps filled with carnitas pork, shredded cabbage, cheddar cheese, “red strips” (Taco Bell’s name, not mine), okonomi sauce, and Japanese mayo. This sounds absolutely amazing and I suppose I could make this myself, but I know that I won’t. Half the fun of eating at Taco Bell is the shame, and D.I.Y. Taco Bell can only result in a sense of accomplishment, thus rendering the entire act and resulting food completely useless.

Allison Robicelli is The Takeout staff writer, a former professional chef, author of three books, and The People's Hot Pocket Princess. Questions about recipes/need cooking advice? Tweet @Robicellis.

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