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Not kiddie food anymore


It’s December.

It’s cold.

As in, never-want-to-leave-my-bed and where-are-my-fuzzy-socks cold. It’s weather that makes people crave comfort food, the kind that puffs butter-scented steam and slides off forks and attracts jealous stares from everyone nearby.

The Grilled Cheese Eatery in Fairfield may have perfected this meal.

A “Grilled Cheese Mac & Cheese.” Toasted white bread packed with cheddar-parmesan mac and cheese.

How unbelievably good does that sound?

Maggie Fiolek ’15 thought it sounded delicious too. She tried it, and now she knows for sure.

“I loved it,” Fiolek said. “I would order the same thing again.”

Even if people didn’t want that particular sandwich, they could choose from nine other specialties or combine any of five breads, eight sauces, and 14 cheeses. Asiago melts into mozzarella between crispy country white and smoked Gouda gushes over the edge of toasted sourdough.

Jamie Swotes ’15 chose “The Classic” and added avocado and tomato: simple, but still excellent.

“The bread was toasted perfectly,” Swotes said. “It was literally unreal.”

Swotes said next time she would get out of her “comfort zone” and try something new. Michelle Gurevich ’14—who has grilled cheese as her desktop background—also wants to try one of the more unusual sandwiches.

“If I took the time to go somewhere like the Grilled Cheese Eatery, I would definitely get the craziest thing on the menu,” Gurevich said.

It’s up in the air, but that might be the Trophy: Gruyere, short ribs, truffle oil, caramelized onions, and mushrooms on sourdough.

But the Eatery is not the only restaurant that has invented some pretty creative variations on what some may have thought was a basic food.

About three miles away, another Fairfield restaurant, MacDaddy’s, has a menu with no less than 25 different versions of mac and cheese, including the “Mac Lobster,” made with fresh Maine lobster, lemon zest, and mozzarella.

Tipped off to the spot by his brother, Joe Zec ’15 picked mac and cheese with 12-hour roasted pulled pork, blue cheese and barbecue sauce. Like Fiolek, he doesn’t want to switch things up.

“I would probably get the pulled pork again,” Zec said.

Served in small saucepans, these macaroni dishes are nothing like a box of Annie’s. Just look at most popular order: the “mac buffalo chicken” is made with fried chicken, homemade buffalo sauce, cheddar and blue cheese.

Somewhere, a health nut just fainted.

But when it’s sub-freezing outdoors, no one wants celery and carrots. Winter is the time to find that heavenly cheesy meal oozing heat and flavor and eat every bite.

What that buttery food lacks in nutrition, it may make up for in emotional benefits. Scientific studies show comfort foods—including mac and cheese—actually counter stress and loneliness.

So really, a visit to the Eatery or MacDaddy’s is a matter of personal well-being.

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About the Contributor
Megan Root
Megan Root, News Editor
Megan Root ’15, never stops running, whether it is on the soccer field or chasing a story. She began her Inklings career her second half of junior year as a staff writer and has recently transitioned into a position as a news editor. Before Inklings she was an avid reader of the New York Times who loved politics and education. To Root, one of the main attractions of the paper was it gave her the opportunity to discover more about her school and community. “It gives you cover, you are not just a random person asking questions you are a reporter asking questions.” To Root the interview is the key to the story. After every interview she writes down all of the interesting quotes and pieces of information she took away. It is from this information that she tries to find the story. One piece she wrote that she believes best showcases her ability to do this is Genders split over weight-training. Although the story was originally supposed to be about how some teams were getting more time in the weight room than others, she discovered that the boys’ teams just wanted more time in the weight whereas the girls teams did not. Root has some personal experience with sports, as a varsity athlete and senior captain of the girls varsity soccer team at Staples. She says when she was about three years old her older brother, who also played soccer, started to teach her. And she was marked for success right from the start, “My first game...nobody else really knew how to play, so I had this really unfair advantage, and I scored twelve goals my first game.” She continued that success through high school, making the varsity team her freshman year and becoming captain her junior year.  

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