Melrose Diner – Almost the best grilled cheese on offer “a tale of two halves”

After visiting Falafill last time out I realised that there was so many more places to eat in this area. I had already clocked the almost vintage sytle sign for Melrose Resturant on a few occasions and today I was really in the mood for some diner food. In my head as I passed down here I was kind of thinking something with gravy, maybe meatloaf with some mashed potato,or even a really comforting macaroni cheese, but that was not how it turned out at all.

As I got closer I saw the neon signs on the corner of Melrose and Broadway. This place was so much bigger than I remembered and it was every so much more old school when I walked inside. I felt that I was at home, if I lived in a diner that is. That reminds me, I nearly splashed out on a round diner table with matching leather and chrome chairs this week, but at the last moment common sense pulled me back from the brink, damned common sense. I will win one day.

I searched all over the menu for macaroni cheese but there was none to be found so instead with cheese on the mind I had a Grilled Cheese sandwich 4 ways with ham, which meant four types of cheese. Nothing too extravagent- cheddar, american, swiss, plus one. It arrived with a single slice of lettuce and a great big piece of pickle, why? I was more likely to eat the toothpicks that were added as scaffolding. Really I don’t know why I am so mean about the poor old pickle, I need a pickle eater to accompany me so that it does not get left all sad. When I lived in Jersey I had some good friends who would just snap it up off my plate and crunch it down, where are you now I wonder pickle people?

Enough already! What about the grilled cheese? It was more like a club sandwich or toasted double decker. The first half of the sandwich and I was in raptures, the cheese was melted nicely, the white bread toasted, even slightly charred from the flat top with a nice sesame seed crust and the ham was somewhere between smoky and charred from the flat top grill. I really enjoyed it. The second slice, well I was bored already, maybe the sandwich was too large but there was not enough to sustain my interest. Nothing wrong with it, just when you have eaten enough maybe it is just time to stop.

I will throw it out there though that so far in Chicago the only better grilled sandwich I have eaten was from Grahamwich and that is a sandwich that one dreams of at night and day dreams of during the day, so damn good job diner guys.

Melrose Diner is located at 3233 N Broadway St at the cross section with W. Melrose St. Walk down from Belmont CTA El station to Broadway and turn left. They do not seem to have a website but their menu is available at MenuPages website here:

Melrose Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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