Cheese: The World Tour
"If traveling in Europe, I would certainly enjoy a creamy French brie or, if I'm in the mood for some kick, a high-quality Camembert," says Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese to Go founder and president Michael Inwald. "My personal French favorite is Saint-André, which enjoys an international reputation as a crowd-pleasing buttery cheese perfectly suited for water crackers or baguettes. If I made my way to Northern Italy, I would not miss my chance to get some local Taleggio, a cheese known for its strong pungent smell. However, if it is properly ripened, there are few cheeses that offer such a rewarding smooth flavor and finish. Another Italian favorite of mine is Robiola, an often blended cheese of Cow, Goat, and Sheep's milk. This cheese is much more mild than Taleggio, and offers varying flavors depending on the milk content and region in which it is produced."
Your Mood, Your Cheese
"Cheeseboy grilled-cheese sandwiches hit the spot for any occasion," says Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese to Go founder and president Michael Inwald. "The mood-shifters (those looking for classic comfort after a difficult day) may go straight for the Cheeseboy Classic (Italian bread and creamy white American cheese) with bacon and/or tomato and fresh basil. The healthy-minded may go for our sweet wheat with light Swiss, tomato, and spinach, while those looking for indulgence may enjoy a Cheddar Delight (rye and Cabot cheddar) with ham and pepperoni. The adventurers out there may kick it up a notch with multigrain, Muenster, ham, onions, and jalapeños — one of my personal favorites. Word to the Cheeseboy wise: adding pickles to your grilled cheese is a little-known secret amongst grilled-cheese aficionados...you'll be surprised!"
"While it can be argued that sandwiches date back to biblical times," says Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese to Go founder and president Michael Inwald, "the popular grilled-cheese sandwich as we know it today emerged in the 1920s and became popularized after U.S. Navy chefs began making grilled-cheese sandwiches during WWII. However, grilled cheese remained a comfort-food staple largely reserved to the confines of the home kitchen until Cheeseboy broke the quick-service barrier and opened America's first quick-service grilled-cheese restaurant franchise."
"Cheeseboy currently has four locations: Boston's South Station train concourse, Boston's Prudential Center, South Shore Plaza in Braintree, MA, and CT Post Mall in Milford, CT," says Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese to Go founder and president Michael Inwald. "Each location is open during mall hours, and South Station is open from 10AM until 9PM Monday–Saturday and 12–6PM on Sunday."
Although he was an average testosterone-kooky teen, all Michael Inwald could think about on his 16th birthday was cheese. Munster! So silky. American! A classic beauty. Provolone! Seductively sassy. His parents indulged the boy (what's not to love about cheese?) and treated him to a four-course, five-star meal at New York City's Artisanal, a brothel of dips and fondues, complete with a cheese cave. Talk about coming of age.
Through Cornell University and the Yale School of Management, and during stints working at a production start-up, a retail giant, and an advertising leader, Michael would come home each day, pull out a couple of slices of bread, cheese, and butter, and cook himself a grilled-cheese sandwich. Sometimes he added in a bacon; other days, strictly basil and tomato. There was a grilled-cheese combo for his every mood and whim. Just the breads alone were reasons to celebrate: whole wheat, Italian, rye. All paired perfectly with a white American and real butter and a tall cold glass of milk. Delicious, cheap, and sorta healthy — now that's livin'.
Michael knew he was extremely cheesy, but he conducted some research and found out that he wasn’t alone: 2.2 billion grilled cheese sandwiches are consumed by Americans each year. This whole country is a one big cheeseball! Being the business-school graduate that he is, Michael decided to combine his havarti heart with his entrepreneurial soul. In 2009 in Milford, Connecticut, he opened his first Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese to Go, a fast-food grilled-cheese take-out joint. He now owns locations in Boston's South Station, the Prudential Center food terrace, and the South Shore Plaza food court. Five more are poised to open, and he's cooked up a national franchise program, ready to roll out next year. It's nonstop work, he says, leaving time for only a few breaks — graced, of course, by a piping-hot grilled-cheese sandwich.