Is Grilled Cheese the Next Big Thing in Fast Casual Restaurants? | TIME

From: TIME and Brad Tuttle

Say cheese! The formula of speedy service, customization, and high quality practiced by fast-casual restaurant leaders Chipotle and Panera Bread is already being widely applied to better burger chains and upscale pizza franchises. Lately, the next hot menu item being given the Chipotle treatment at restaurants, mall kiosks, and food trucks around the country is the classic comfort food, grilled cheese.

People love grilled cheese. Then again, most people can make pretty darn good grilled cheese. Doing so requires only a few ingredients (bread, cheese, butter or margarine), and very little skill. Going with a basic grilled cheese at a restaurant is akin to ordering cereal: That’s fine if that’s what you really want, but it’d be just as good—and way cheaper—if you handled the “cooking” yourself.

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