The first bite of the decadent cheese sandwich was orgasmic.
OK, maybe that wouldn’t be my descriptor of choice, but there’s no denying the Cheesy Guys’ grilled cheese sandwich is akin to a spiritual experience for those who love curds and whey.
And “orgasmic” is what one customer used to describe the sharp, tart and savory blend of up to 16 different cheeses.
The panini-pressed wonder has become one of my lunchtime staples at the St. Catharines Farmers’ Market. It’s the brainchild of Cheesy Guys owners Kristine and Rick Broughton, who started off their cheesy business by making cheesecake.
Rick’s recipe was a hit with friends, so the couple decided to start a small operation out of their Port Dalhousie home. Occasionally, they’d sell their cheesecake pops and slices at the market. Equipped with just a table and a couple of coolers, it was hard to make their sideline business grow. When the opportunity arose last December to buy a cheese truck, the couple jumped on it.
Both have quit their day jobs — Rick, a Dofasco worker, and Kristine, a massage therapist — and
poured themselves into gouda, cheddar and brie.
Together they make the market rounds — St. Catharines on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday and the Pelham Farmers Market in Fonthill on Thursday evenings.
While the cheese they sell by the slice is fantastic — think Applewood cheddar, creamy Quebec brie — it’s the grilled cheese that has me coming back for more. Nearly every week.
Kristine says she’s continually playing with the cheese combination, but the basic blend is consistent and local: Guernsey Girl, a cheese that loves to be heated, and Niagara Nasty, the 8 year old cheddar. Guernsey Girl is made by the Upper Canada Cheese Co. in Jordan, Ont.
Kristine has lofty goals of making her creation an award winner some day. There are several grilled cheese contests out there. The Dairy Farmers of Canada is hosting one that runs until July 25.
For now, Kristine says she’ll be happy with the contented smiles of customers like me.
Say cheese! I’m certainly smiling.