We attended the Grilled Cheese Invitational at Dolores Park in San Francisco.  The event had the capacity for 500 "judges" which basically went to the first 500 people to get in line and make a $2 donation.

Unfortunately, what looked like 1000+ people showed up and were quite disappointed when the man with the megaphone told them there were only 20 wristbands left.

Look at the line of people winding its way around the park.

Well, guess who got the LAST TWO wristbands?

The crowd

The Competitors

I quickly became completely frustrated with the format.  There was no structure.  In order to get a sandwich, you had to fight your way through the mob, get to the front, and yell and scream like an idiot when someone waved a grilled cheese in front of you.  Some of the competitors were even making people grovel and beg.

Pathetic.  It took an hour to get 2 quarter-slices.

It was a great idea that was executed poorly.  They should have had people form a line or draw numbers.

We got a slice from their "Missionary Position" category (standard bread, standard butter and standard cheese.  No additional ingredients or flavorings allowed) and one from their "Kama Sutra" category (in which anything goes).  

The standard sandwich was OK, but I think I could make a better one using tips from our previous article Alternative Grilled Cheese Techniques.  The second was fantastic though.  I'm not sure what kind of meat was in there - but it also had some sort of bitter greens, maybe collard, maybe beet.  It added a sweet and tangy touch that balanced well with the richness of the cheese. 

So, how do you win?  Take a tip for their Official Rules page:

"10) Have sex with somebody before the competition - Let your hair down and relax, then come and grill cheese. You'd be surprised how much of a difference it really makes in the grill."

Authordavid koch
CategoriesHistory, Humor