by Olivia Loggia
Located in the heart of downtown Westfield on Quimby Street, the newly opened Grilled Cheese Shoppe is the type of place you’d put on your Snapchat story because of its “aesthetic appeal.” With a modern-industrial atmosphere, the restaurant features tabouret bistro chairs, exposed pendant-style lights and a tastefully lettered menu.
After my first trip, I wanted to go back...but not because of a heavenly dining experience. After waiting in line for about four minutes, six other customers and I were told that the GCS had run out of bread. So with a heavy heart, empty stomach and dreams of the grilled cheese I didn’t have, I headed home.
That was last Friday night at 7 p.m., a seemingly ideal time to dine. My second trip was with my mom during a quieter time of the week. Unfortunately, we were met with similar disappointment. After not being acknowledged by any employees for several minutes, we were then awkwardly greeted by the owner. For two grilled cheese sandwiches, we waited a total of 16 minutes, although that wasn’t a surprise after seeing the looks of bewilderment as the employees read each of the orders.
Nonetheless, the food was delicious. My mom and I split the “Classic” and the “Brielicious.” The “Classic” was the perfect gooey blend of cheddar, mozzarella and smoked Gouda, all melted over fresh slices of sourdough bread. Our second sandwich, the “Brielicious,” was a more exotic option, filled with a rich double créme brie, sweet caramelized onions and a complementary cranberry chutney, all on cranberry walnut sourdough bread.
While there, I chatted with fellow first-time diner and mayor of Westfield, Mr. Andy Skibitsky. Although he thought the GCS has room for improvement, he was pleased with its addition to Westfield. He said: “I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like cheese. It’s very trendy and exciting, and the food was very good.”
Long story short: the GCS’s food is excellent. That is, if you have the patience to wait for it.