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A new Harris Poll has just been released: “the 30th annual EquiTrend Study reveals the strongest brands across the media, travel, financial, automotive, entertainment, retail, restaurant, technology, household and nonprofit industries, based on consumer response.” The poll monitors 3,000 brands, based on an online survey of more than 77,000 Americans ages 15 and up. The top (strongest) brands appear to be the ones that consumers are most familiar with across the country, otherwise why would Subway be listed as top sandwich shop (tied with Panera)? Or Taco Bell taking the top spot for Mexican restaurant, upending 2017 winner Moe’s, and 2016’s Chipotle?

The poll lists some up-and-comers in the food world: Blaze Pizza for one, or Five Guys for burger restaurant. But most seem to fall in the “familiar” category, like Cheesecake Factory and Texas Roadhouse tying for casual restaurant, Chick-Fil-A for chicken restaurant, Ben & Jerry for ice cream shop, and Krispy Kreme for coffee shop. Nothing against a run for the border (and those Nacho Fries), but if your fave Mexican restaurant is Taco Bell, may we also suggest checking out a local taqueria, or perhaps whipping up your own carnitas?

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