What's next for Subway, now that it's surpassed McDonald's and Starbucks in store locations? According to Nation's Restaurant News, it's tackling the ever-popular café culture. Meet the chain's new Subway Cafés: slightly larger outlets designed to be a cross between a sandwich store and a coffee bar, with baked goods, hot and cold espresso drinks, and frozen blended beverages, among other offerings.
The decor, which might include coffee tables, lounge chairs, bookshelves, and a fireplace, mimics the cozy coffeehouse ambiance of — you guessed it — a McCafé or a Starbucks. In addition to his aggressive growth strategy of opening 2,000 new North American locations in 2011, President Fred DeLuca will also add about 10 more Subway Cafés to the franchise's current roster of 15 by the end of this year.
What do you think of the concept? Will tonier seating arrangements make you want to eat at Subway more often?