Grilled Cheese Month had just ended, and yet there we were the day after, standing outside of the Grilled Cheese Truck. YALLWest, a book festival in Santa Monica devoted to Young Adult novels, had just started, and the lines for lunch had not yet formed. I had only heard horror stories of the long waits for the truck, both waiting to order and to get food. When I saw that there was no line, it was like a sign from God.
The menu is pretty simple – grilled cheese which can be customized, tomato soup, tater tots and pickles. The biggest choice is whether to go with one of the signature melts like the Cheesy Mac Melt which has macaroni and cheese inside or to build your own.
My daughter is a traditionalist and kept it simple – French bread with American cheese. We waited about five minutes, tops, and were rewarded with a perfectly toasted grilled cheese sandwich.
Pressed for time as we had a panel to see, I chose BBQ pork with sharp cheddar. The BBQ pork was sweet and tangy, a perfect contrast to the sharp cheddar. I devoured mine with plenty of time to spare.
The sandwiches are on the small side, so if you have a healthy appetite, it’s probably a good idea to get some tater tots or soup to go with it. They also offer a couple of dessert melts like Smore Melt and Apple Pie Melt. Better yet, treat yourself to another grilled cheese sandwich of your choosing.
For those who are gluten-free or vegan, you’re out of luck with this truck. They don’t offer gluten-free bread, which I guess is probably because if you have celiac disease, you would not want to risk your sandwich being cooked on the same grill. Vegan cheese is not an option either so your best bet here for gluten-free and/or vegan diners looks like tater tots or pickles. While tater tots and pickles are both delicious, they hardly constitute a meal.
Would I wait an hour for The Grilled Cheese Truck? No, but if I see the truck again without a long line, I’ll be running as fast as I can, squeezing through people who might be approaching the window, to triumphantly order my grilled cheese and tater tots.
Location – Varies within Los Angeles, Orange County and Venture/Santa Barbara and outside California in New York, Phoenix, Austin and the United Arab Emirates . See http://thegrilledcheesetruck.com/see-all-trucks/
Website – http://thegrilledcheesetruck.com
Kid-Friendly – Yes
Kid’s Menu – No
Pesco-Vegetarian Friendly – Yes
Vegetarian Friendly – Yes
Vegan/Gluten-Free Options – No, unless you count tater tots and pickles.