First Look: Dallas Grilled Cheese Company

DSC06398by Steven Doyle

There is a wave of new restaurants hitting the shores of Dallas very soon, and some of them will feature that iconic American classic, the grilled cheese sandwich. Sure, at first glance this looks like snow day kitchen fare, something you would make when you are too lazy to even shower, but for one new restaurant in the Bishop Arts District in Oak Cliff they have elevated this primo sandwich to new heights. Enter the Dallas Grilled Cheese Company.  

Owned and operated by a group of Oak Cliff partners, Diana Ezzell, Glenn Shank, and Mack Simpson. They all bring a certain bit of expertise to the kitchen table. Ezzell practices law, but actually came up with the concept, Shank and Simpson are from advertising backgrounds. They have other partners that have actual restaurant experience, so they are not tackling this show blindly.

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“Grilled cheese is the ultimate comfort food, and the idea was to sort of bring the 1950’s nuclear family, the acme feeling of it, and update it to the new millennia. We wanted to take the idea of playing with a classic American food, and what better way to do that than with grilled cheese? It’s a blank slate, you can do anything with it,” said Simpson during a recent interview with craveDFW.

The grilled cheese is definitely a perfect mealtime canvass. With the gooey richness of the cheese, the crisped and buttery crunch of the bread, and whatever choice filling you might desire, the grilled cheese is soulful.

One particular filling you may add to literally anything on the menu at Dallas Grilled Cheese is bacon. “Who doesn’t love bacon? The salty, crispiness of the bacon really combines well with the cheeses,” stepped up Simpson. Simpson said he didn’t judge, you can feel free to add as much bacon to any menu item, including the bacon appetizer, or as one customer did on opening day – they added bacon to a chocolate milk shake. Again, no judgment from the staff.

The crowd last night was happy. I have never seen such smiling, happy people eagerly anticipating their first order of a grilled cheese sandwich. But this is what this sandwich will do to people. It evokes happy memories of family, of childhood, and of simpler times with much less worry and certainly zero guilt of a meal.

DSC06405Grilled Cheese Master, Jennifer Kunze

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A chef was actually imported from a resort in Cape Cod specifically for her cheesy talents. Jennifer Kunze actually prefers the title Grilled Cheese Master over chef, even though her talents spring far beyond just bread and cheese. She has plans to actually make her own bacon, to stride alongside her other fillings which include other pork products, and one version that has a sweet marshmallow and chocolate filling. But they are looking for her particular innovation that she adds.

Simpson said that they are working on partnerships to do special sandwiches, and hopes to be working with local purveyors such as Dude, Sweet Chocolate, Scardello Cheese, and even Lockhart Smokehouse for an added sense of community.

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DSC06408grilled cheese bruschetta

Look for a full bar with some terrific local brews, and a tap from Bishop Cider Company. The sandwiches start off at 2.99 and work up depending on your additions, and we definitely recommend a ration of bacon for just about everything. We will think about the bacon chocolate shake, but only if they add a bit of vodka.

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