Archive for March, 2011

@ Kwik Trip, in Wausau

OH NO, THEY DIDN’T. Thanks to my sophisticated network of grilled cheese spotters, I got the hot tip on this little gem the day before this. (I don’t know what’s more unsettling here – the absolute certainty of total unpaletability, or this price point.) As luck would have it, I stumbled upon this super low-buck deal on my lunch break. I could not WAIT to hate it, so I came back later and picked one up for a pre-dinner snack. (Please note my arrival at dinner time; which I think is a testament to my sportsmanship.) I took it with me to my mom’s. 

Had I not already had it on good authority that it was both “terrible,” and stomach-ache inducing, this presentation would have conveyed both those things pretty effectively. Snack attack, indeed. 

You have to hand it to them, though. This does look pretty convincing.

Well, all it took was one bite, and I knew I’d found something pretty special. Grilled cheese #27, and the spectrum was finally complete. This bland, luke-warm, sponge of mystery was my very first 1/10…and marks the successful establishment of the full, grilled cheese spectrum. The “Roy G Biv” of sandwiches, as it were. Let the quest continue.

(Although my mom had initially agreed to split this with me, she quickly became disenchanted, and seemed to lose her enthusiasm for the integrity of the process. See her review, below.)


@ The Old Fashioned, in Madison


No. 40: Grilled cheese sandwich with Swiss, aged Cheddar, wood-roasted red bell peppers and Bavaria’s hickory-smoked bacon on Texas toast.”  

I’m not normally one to withhold praise when praise is so clearly due, but I’ve just been way too depressed about this photo to feign interest in composing my love letter to this sandwich. Even opening the draft of this post left me too repulsed to put sentences together….which is obviously why I had to lead with this dazzling stock photo of their namesake. (Yes, I did partake… and yes, they’re perfect.)

Now brace yourself.

 The humanity.

As if it’s not painfully obvious, this has been paint-shopped and noise-filtered within an inch of itself – and really, no better for it. (i.e. auto ‘electric pickle’ correct.) Ironic red candles and supper club lighting aside, the Old Fashioned is pretty much a Wisconsin treasure. It’s crowded and loud, they have damn near thirty wisconsin beers on tap, and they have a five page menu full of words like “cheese,” “wurst,” and “battered.” (A bit of a conundrum, too, that they manage to make one feel nostalgia for a home state one is in, and still lives.) 

As expected, they got the grilled cheese right, too. Although not terribly crunchy, it is foolishly delicious. The bacon and roasted red peppers take this sandwich to serious flavor country….and they make a pretty good curd, too. (Despite what their name might suggest, they’re probably better known for these.) I gave the sandwich a 9, and the curds an 8. On a side note: if you think my getting cheese curds on the side was overkill, we probably can’t be friends. ($6.95)

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