Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Mmm So Gouda: The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen

I'm a connoisseur of grilled cheese sandwiches. I realize how bizarre that sounds, but since it was the first thing I ever learned to cook and I've been cooking since I was six, I feel it's a fairly accurate description.

So when my friend M mentioned that San Francisco had a cafe called "The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen", oh hell yes, you can bet we were going next time I visited.

When we arrived on a Wednesday afternoon, there was a line poking out the door and both the indoor and patio seating were filled. Always a good testament to delicious food to come, I'd like to think. As it's informal dining, don't worry if it's packed--you can get your sandwich to go and have a picnic around the corner at the park if the weather permits.

I ordered the 'Mousetrap': Tillamook sharp cheddar, creamy havarti, and monterey jack on artisan sourdough bread. Because, let's face it, how can you visit San Francisco and not have some of the sourdough bread?

I also added tomatoes and turkey to my sandwich order. I was certainly not disappointed either.

This sandwich was, in short, absolutely delicious, but if I left it at that, this wouldn't be a very good review, would it? The blend of cheeses along with the butter was just the epitome of comfort food.

The bread was a bit crisper than I prefer but it balanced out the three cheeses. Also harder bread is rather unavoidable when working with sourdough as it is innately denser than most.

Despite being smothered in cheese, you could tell the tomatoes were fresh and there was enough turkey that its unique flavor wasn't overwhelmed. Honestly, I think that's what impressed me overall: it had a perfect balance, I could taste every aspect. I realize I'm swooning over a sandwich, but it really hit the spot.

The strawberries that came with it didn't hurt either. Fresh, tart and perfect for cleansing the palette so you're not worrying about cheese breath for the next hour.

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