Subway is opening cafés. Yes, the foot-long sandwich chain is launching an upscale version of their sub shops called the Subway Café. Every office building needs a little Starbucks at the bottom, but Starbucks can’t be everywhere. According to the Nation’s Restaurant News report, “Some of the upgrades include: Wood paneling, warmer paint colors, plasma TVs, lounge chairs and electric fireplaces. On the outside, eyebrow-shaped arches on the sides of the roofs.” The menu too will shift offering coffees, espresso drinks and Panini sandwiches.
Even McDonald’s is rumoring to do a little face lift in their 14,000 U.S. restaurants. They are also aiming for a more “Starbucks” feel. “McDonalds plans to do away with its fiberglass tables and steel chairs to make the restaurant an inviting destination with padded recliners and warm painted interiors that help customers linger — and maybe spend a few extra bucks.”
But before the fast food giants follow in the coffee chains’ footsteps, maybe they should look forward to where Starbucks is headed. Wine and cheese. It’s already tried serving wine and beer in a three of the Seattle stores. According to a USA Today story, “Most conspicuously, the place looks less like a Starbucks and more like a cafe that’s been part of the neighborhood for years — yet that’s “green” in design and decor. This is the calling card of independent java joints that have been eating and sipping away at Starbucks’ evening business for decades. U.S. Starbucks stores get 70 percent of business before 2 p.m.”
Either way, will Subway be able to retain their “healthy fast food chain” image? Well, that’s just PR anyway — turns out Subway diners may in fact consume more than diners at McDonald’s.