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April is National Grilled Cheese month. If you want to move past the basic Velveeta-and-white-bread set-up, try these creative creations across town.

The Cheese Bar

What kind of world would we be living in where a so-named establishment, offering a nearly infinite variety of cut-to-order cheeses, didn’t also serve grilled cheese sandwiches? Thankfully, there’s a rotating variety to choose from, including a triple-cheese with Havarti, cheddar, and Butterkäse from Wisconsin, and our favorite: fig, prosciutto, and chevre, served on fresh ciabatta. (And yes, they have a stash of Velveeta in the back too.)

Common Bond Cafe & Bakery

The croque-madame may not be your traditional grilled cheese go-to, but perhaps this beloved bakery’s version should be: stuffed with real-deal jambon de Paris and a double-shot of Gruyère and swiss cheeses, this Texas take on the French classic is topped with a perfectly soft-cooked egg and spicy jalapeño béchamel. Even better? It’s also served at brunch. 

The General Public

This San Antonio import from the owners of Bowl & Barrel, the bowling-alley-slash-restaurant that occupies the adjoining space in CityCentre, brings some Central Texas heat to the game with its green-chile grilled cheese, which features American and muenster cheese on jalapeño bread, slathered with green chile gravy. 

Max’s Wine Dive

While it’s terribly easy to be tempted by Max’s notorious fried egg sandwich, oozing with Gruyère and black truffle aioli, students of simplicity will find much to honor in the classic pairing of grilled cheese and homemade tomato-basil soup. Here, it’s roasted-piquillo-pepper pimento cheese on artisan bread, but it still tastes like what Mom would have made—if she’d gone to the Cordon Bleu.

The Moonshiners Southern Table + Bar

If you’ve never thrown a handful of smoked brisket into a grilled cheese sandwich, let the folks at this restaurant from the owners of Pub Fiction do it for you. In true Lone Star fashion, the entire, wonderfully messy affair is melted between two thick pieces of Texas toast.

Pinewood Cafe

Give your kids the control they crave by letting them build their own grilled cheese at this popular spot in Hermann Park. The café offers a selection of seven different cheeses and breads, eight kinds of protein (from bacon to falafel), and 14 different vegetables and other toppings to create the grandest sandwich ever to grace a table overlooking McGovern Lake.

 

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Presidio

If you’ve been on Facebook or Instagram lately, you’ll have seen the latest rage is melted Raclette atop a mound of golden potatoes. But we’re here to tell you the creamy Swiss cheese that’s captured the Snapchat streams of America is even better between slices of crusty Tuscan bread, as chef Adam Dorris serves it here, tucking juicy slices of garden-fresh tomatoes inside, too. 

Relish Restaurant & Bar

Though its patio makes a compelling argument for brunch and mimosas, this neighborhood spot only offers its grilled cheese sandwich at lunch, so you’ll have to make a midday visit to try this triple-threat: mozzarella, cheddar, and Gruyère on fresh sourdough bread. Equally alluring are the choices of sides—we recommend the pea-pesto pasta with pine nuts and Parmesan (say that five times fast) and the cauliflower salad with grapes and pepitas.

State Fare Kitchen & Bar

It’s almost a given that a place so oriented toward perfecting the comfort foods of your suburban youth would feature a grilled cheese worthy of your fondest memories. This grown-up take on the classic piles braised short rib and pickled red onions atop sourdough bread. A duo of Tillamook cheddar and Gruyère brings it all together in melty harmony. 

Tom + Chee

Having started out in a tent on Cincinnati’s Fountain Square before making it to ABC’s Shark Tank and opening 20 franchised locations across 14 states—including this one in Katy—the founders of this chain achieve success in the basics. There are a few other things on the short menu besides tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches (chicken tortilla soup, a handful of salads), but let’s be real: You’re here for the grilled mac 'n' cheese sandwich.

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Editor’s Pick

Tom + Chee

$ American/New American, Sandwiches 21788 Katy Fwy #500

Editor’s Pick

State Fare Kitchen & Bar

$$ Hamburgers 947 Gessner Rd. Ste. B190

A recent visit here found the place packed, with many tables enjoying the same dish we were: a classic bacon cheeseburger stacked with heaps of crispy shredd...

Editor’s Pick

Relish Restaurant & Bar

$$ American/New American 2810 Westheimer Road

Presidio

$$ American/New American 911 W. 11th St.

Former Pax Americana chef Adam Dorris is behind the comfort food at this patio destination. Bring a canine pal and hang out with some live music and dishes l...

Pinewood Café

$ Café, Sandwiches 6104 Hermann Park Dr.

Nestled in Hermann Park, Pinewood Café is best known for its make-your-own grilled cheese menu. Choose from seven different breads, six different cheeses and...

Editor’s Pick

The Moonshiners Southern Table + Bar

$ American/New American, Southern 1000 Prairie St.

Editor’s Pick

Max’s Wine Dive

$$ American/New American, Cajun, Creole, Southern Multiple Locations

Max’s Wine Dive sells 150 wines by the glass—the bartender will open any bottle in the house if you order at least two glasses. Along with champagne and frie...

The General Public

$$ American/New American 797 Sorella Ct.

Local ingredients inform the approachable but creative dishes at this quirky restaurant and barroom. The pistachio toast served with burrata is a must, as is...

Editor’s Pick

Common Bond Café & Bakery

$$ American/New American, Bakeries, Café 1706 Westheimer Rd.

It’s not all croissants and kugelhopf and colorful packages of macarons at this nearly perfect patisserie—you’ll find stellar breakfast and brunch items on o...

The Cheese Bar

$ American/New American, Deli, Sandwiches Multiple Locations

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