Restaurant Review: Grilled Cheese Grill in Portland

Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Did you know that April is National Grilled Cheese Month? I figured I’d better take part in the celebration before the month was out with a visit to the Grilled Cheese Grill food cart in Portland. It’s a great thing to be able to enjoy a grilled cheese sandwich even though you have to stay gluten-free. I’m now obsessed.

There are two locations: the School Bus at the corner of NE Alberta & 11th, and the Double Decker on the corner of SE 28th & Ankeny. Both have their familiar silver carts where the kitchen resides, but they have their own bus dining areas.

The original School Bus location
Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

And the new Double Decker location
Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Inside the Double Decker on the lower level
Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Now for the important stuff: the grilled cheese. Grilled Cheese Grill has such a varied menu. Besides just about any cheese variety you can think of, sandwiches can also include salami, bacon, ham, artichoke hearts, roasted jalapenos, roasted red peppers, or sauteed mushrooms. The gluten-free bread they use is from Bob’s Red Mill; no wonder it’s so good. Nice light texture, and the same size as a regular loaf of bread so you won’t feel cheated. However, you will have to pay an extra $0.75 to have your sandwich on gluten-free bread, which is kind of a bummer, but lots of other places charge more than that..

Here are a few sandwiches I’ve tried:

  • The Kelsey – Tillamook cheddar & basil pesto. Simple, but classic.
  • The Northsider – provolone, tomato, and basil pesto with an add-on of salami. The Northsider I had with the salami was a little on the greasy side, but still super tasty. I did notice that my Double Decker sandwich was not as greasy as my School Bus location sandwich. May have been a fluke, we’ll see on my next visit.

Here’s what I had today: The Pops. Havarti, tomato, and honey mustard. They had me at the mere mention of havarti cheese.

Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

And…I tried a gluten-free brownie! I was told these are made locally by a baker who has kids who are gluten-intolerant, which I think is great. Not my favorite brownie out there, though; it’s just OK. They have a grainy texture and a nice flavor that’s not overly sweet…but not very chocolatey.

Grilled Cheese Grill - Portland, OR

Grilled cheese is the ultimate in comfort food for me. Especially on a gloomy Portland afternoon. Here’s a food cart with great grilled cheese, friendly staff, Tom Petty playing on the bus stereo system, and a quirky, fun dining area that’s protected from the outside elements. It’s hard to go wrong with all that.


About Carla

My name is Carla Bray, and I'm a website designer and developer. I provide website design, content management, copywriting, and SEO. My goal is to create simple websites that look clean, are easy to navigate, and quick to find the information you want. I'm also a social media other words, I spend way too much time on the web. Just to give you an example, I implemented and maintain a Facebook page for The Path Bike Shop, a local bike shop in Tustin, CA. This page has grown to almost 2500 "likes", an accomplishment I am very proud of. I live gluten-free since I have been allergic to wheat ever since childhood. My website "Gluten Free Fever" can tell you all about living gluten-free in Portland, OR...and I can tell you for certain, there's tons of great stuff in this town. I'm an avid bicyclist. I love all sorts of riding: mountain biking, commuting, cyclocross, and BMX. I enjoyed playing outside in the dirt since I was a kid, and I guess that's something I will never outgrow. My other interests include music, swimming, TRX training, yoga, reading, fiction (I'm a sucker for debut novels), libraries, cooking (and eating) gluten-free, blogging, and knitting. I currently live in Portland, Oregon, where I covet and cherish any sunny day that happens to come along.

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