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OS Reviews: The Melt Shack

When you’re craving a grilled cheese during normal dining hours, (aka not after 10pm), do the triple-decker sandwiches at The Melt Shack stack up? Our Onward State Writers were sent downtown to review the newest grilled cheese shop.

Emilie Dormer

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I love cheese. I eat it with at least every meal, so I wasn’t sure how to feel about paying over a dollar for a simple grilled cheese. When I went to the Melt Shack around dinnertime, I was surprised to see a few other people enjoying dinner considering it had only opened on Monday. I was incredibly pleased with the service, and the one man working there was incredibly kind. I ordered the The Sicilian, a sandwich with mozzarella, tomatoes, salami, and pesto. I was a little worried that there would be too much going on for me to enjoy the flavors of the sandwich, but I was impressed from the first bite. Pesto is easy to overdue, but it was just the right amount. The bread was a little too crunchy for me, but there was just enough cheese, and they grilled the salami so that it was a little crisp. My tastebuds were happy with every bite, and for around seven dollars  the triple-decker sandwich was plenty of food.

My boyfriend, also known as the pickiest eater on the planet, got the turkey bacon and cheddar grilled cheese. He enjoyed it, but, like me, didn’t care for the tomato bisque that each sandwich comes with. We both wished for more drinks, different sides, and hope that there is an expanded menu to come. Overall, I look forward to this eatery growing, and will be going back when I need a grilled cheese fix.

Joe Pickard

When I heard they were opening a grilled cheese place downtown, I was excited to check it out. After looking over the menu at Melt Shack, I ordered the Monster Muenster (grilled cheese with muenster cheese). Upon receiving my sandwich I first noticed that it was a triple-decker, unusual for a grilled cheese, and this thing was loaded with cheese. It was nice to see that they did not skimp on the cheese and also that they actually used a grill, and not a Panini place like some places do. The grilled cheese was a decent size, especially with the triple-decker. The sandwich had a great cheese to bread ratio. Another nice touch was you get a little dip container of tomato bisque with every sandwich to dip your grilled cheese in.

Overall I’d give the grilled cheese an 8/10. It’s hard to make a decent grilled cheese, but it wasn’t the best grilled cheese I have ever had. Don’t’ get me wrong though, it was a very good grilled cheese, and for $4.50 I didn’t think it was a bad deal. If I were craving a grilled cheese, I’d definitely go back.

Mike Reisman

I went to the Melt Shack with fairly high expectations, especially as I was greeted by a sign that said the store closed at 10 – before drunk hours. A grilled cheese restaurant whose business doesn’t hinge on drunkenness is an ambitious proposal to say the least. Walking in, I noticed the price too, no less than five dollars per sandwich.

Grilled cheeses, to me, are usually smaller, not a full meal with just one, and relatively cheap. So when I got my sandwich – a grilled cheese with turkey bacon – I was pleasantly surprised to see a triple decker filled with bacon. In general, I thought it was good, but the bacon wasn’t crispy enough, forcing me to rip apart the sandwich with my teeth just to get a cohesive bite. Overall, it was pretty good, but I feel like the sandwiches fall into an abyss between drunk food and gourmet sandwiches and, unfortunately, that isn’t a great market to be in for grilled cheese. Ideally, a menu switch at 10 p.m. to cheaper grilled cheeses and extended hours would come, and the Melt Shack could break in as one of the top drunk food spots in State College. Until then, I’ll probably only stop by when I’m really, really craving a grilled cheese.

Dylan Coughlin

With this being my first semester here at University Park, I am very new to the downtown eatery scene. After hearing the Melt Shack was opening up I was intrigued, naturally. I figured I would be able to give a fair review on a grilled cheese sandwich considering the fact that for the first 20 years of my life the only thing I knew how to make was a grilled cheese.

I went for an early dinner on Tuesday and was impressed by the different options they had cheese wise for their sandwiches. They had a different signature sandwich for any type of cheese lover.

I decided to go with a very simple turkey bacon and cheddar cheese sandwich since I am a little picky with my cheese. I was pleased to see that they definitely don’t skimp on the meat and cheese in the sandwich. It also should be noted that their signature sandwiches are all triple deckers, so it gives the Melt Shack a little bit of uniqueness to their product with that extra slice of bread.

Overall, it was a cool little place with tasty food and the owner was pretty friendly and fun to talk to. The Melt Shack will definitely be a lunch destination spot for myself in the future.

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