18,000 Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Me

1 Flip Video Camera
5,400 attendees
18,000 Kraft Singles Grilled Cheese Samples made by the people at Kraft Singles
1 crazy afternoon in LA

That’s right. I was there, for the one, the only First 7th Annual Grilled Cheese Invitational in Los Angeles, CA.
There was more cheese than you can shake a stick at, more crazy characters than in a Dr. Seuss book and more fun than a barrel of monkeys.
After hours of walking, snacking, videoing, snapping pictures, talking, learning, drooling and cheesin’ it up, I have a new respect for Grilled Cheese and the Grilled Cheese artists that compete at this event.
There was asiago, fontina, mozzarella, cheddar, aged cheddar, swiss, marscapone, whipped cream cheese, a plethora of parmesan and even cheeses that I’ve never heard of prior to the GCI. There were sandwiches on homemade bread, sourdough bread, cinnamon raisin bread and more. There was truffle oil, strawberries, bacon, bacon grease, duck fat, salami, pastrami, carnita, pears, apples, nuts and even peeps.


There were awards for the most  Cheese-alicious Poetry, an amazing sculpture of a Deer Head made entirely out of Grilled Cheese Sandwiches by the Grilled Cheesiest Artist ever Lucinda Michele, THOUSANDS of Grilled Cheese Sandwiches made with Kraft Singles, by the fantastic people at Kraft and ice cold juice drinks by Izze

I might possibly have consumed a portion of the 18,000 (isn’t that a staggering number! Guinness records anyone?) grilled cheese sandwiches and I can personally confirm that they were crispy, crunchy, ooey, gooey and delicious.   And I definitely drank a couple of the Sparkling Grapefruit Izze drinks and YUM!

The categories ranged from Missionary (bread, butter and cheese), Karma Sutra (anything that pleases, as long as it’s internal ingredients are 60% cheese) and the truly scrumptious and divine Honey Pot category (desserts, that were insanely good and made of rich, tonguegasmically delightful, sinfully, beautifully rich cheeses) There was even a Banana Bread, Peanut Butter Milkshake Honey Pot entry

I even learned a few things while there:

  • Cut your grilled cheese sandwich into strips and serve them “fries-style” and your kids will gobble up this new delight, trust me, I’ve already done this and it worked.. They EVEN ATE THE CRUST!!!!
  • Did you know that your Grilled Cheese Sandwich needs to rest before you cut it?   If you allow it to rest, the cheese will not erupt lava style from your sandwich.  It will instead be the perfect ooey gooey center of your buttery golden, crispy toasted Grilled Sammich Delight.

These are just two of the tips that I picked up while hanging around the GCI and interviewing and observing the contestants.
I have been inspired and rejuvenated and I will never look at Butter, Bread and Cheese the same way, the opportunities are limitless. Whether it’s balsamic basil infused butter, truffle oil,  whipped cream cheese, homemade bread, marscapone and strawberries or pepper jack, bacon, duck fat and spinach… This is NOT your mama’s, or even your grandma’s grilled cheese.

Be daring, Be delightful, Be a Cheese-tastic Chef. And if you live in the Los Angeles area… keep your eyes and ears open because the Kraft Singles Sponsored Grilled Cheese Invitational is a treat for the eyes, the ears and most definitely the mouth.

I want to send a HUGE thank you to the wonderful people at Kraft Singles for sending me to Los Angeles and giving me this opportunity. I had a phenomenal time and I am more than ready for next year!

Do you want to feel like you were there? Or experience it through our eyes?

Watch the video below!

A special thanks to Christy of Southern Plate allowing me to use some of her Flip footage of the event!

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  1. But I really like cheese lava eruptions from my sammich.

    Great idea for the kiddos about the strips! I will try that this weekend.

    And 5400 people?!? That’s insane! What a great crowd. I don’t know why I’m surprised – it’s CHEESE!

    amy@milkbreathandmargaritas’s latest brilianceNew York New York

  2. That event was INSPIRATIONAL!! In fact, I think I want to throw my spatula in the ring next year. I have a few months to perfect a recipe. It is so on. And the video ROCKED. And whatddaya know! Me and Fury have a cameo in it!

    BusyDad’s latest brilianceThere I Go Again

  3. @texasholly oh my holy hell girl. that sounds amazing. I do love me some Brie 😉
    @BusyDad you should absolutely throw your hat in the ring! You would be an amazing competitor and Fury, the perfect mascot/sous chef. 😉
    @amy it was awesome, you would have loved it!
    @mariah HI! Yep, aesthetics are sooo important!

  4. OMG> Talk about being in heaven! A world where grill cheese samiches reign supreme…. sounds like heaven!

    shannanb aka mommy bits’s latest briliancePicture Perfect

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