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I’m Mari.
On Marivelous Me! you’ll find recipes, food gifts, food I’ve traveled for and food solutions. Poke around, maybe you’ll find inspiration for something you’re working on. Enjoy! 


la maison du croque monsieur

Located in a small two-story building on East 13th Street sits La Maison du Croque Monsieur (I'll call it Mr. C), a restaurant primarily selling one thing: grilled cheese sandwiches. Whatevs, you might say but these aren't your standard American grillers. These are French grilled cheese sandwiches. What separates a good ole US of A one from a French one? The answer's simple: Sauce. Béchamel sauce: a white sauce made of butter, flour, milk, salt, white pepper and nutmeg. Kinda like a white gravy but made with butter instead of meat drippings. Ooo, butter.

The downstairs to Mr. C is teeny tiny, with just enough room for a couple café tables and a counter to order your food - to stay or to go. My suggestion is to stay and take your tray upstairs. All around, you'll find literally references; from the menu - sandwiches named after writers: Mr. Gore (Vidal), Mme. Anaïs (Nin) - to vintage typewriters and faux card catalog drawer pulls on the tables. You'd think they'd have kept the French theme going with French writers, but whatevs.

Mr. Mari and I both ordered the traditional croque monsieur: Mr. Henry, which comes with Jambon de Paris (wet-cured ham), béchamel sauce and your choice of cheese. Mr. C also has signature and sweet dessert croques as well as some vegetable sides and pastries.

Mmm, one side is pan-griddled, buttery, delicately crisp and occasionally you'll come across crispy fried cheese bits along the edges; the other side has crunchy grilled lines; the cheese was mildly funky and had really good roller coaster stretch; the ham was moist and provided a nice salty layer. 

1) The croque was seriously tasty and fun but I could have eaten at least another half, even after having a side of carrot salad.
2) The concept may prove to be a bit niche-y but the prices are reasonable and the atmosphere is very nice. I know espresso machines are expensive but it would help draw in an afternoon crowd. 
3) We made a pact that we're only allowed to come here on special occasions, when we need a lunch treat. Otherwise, it's too close by and convenient for us not to be tempted by the siren call of melted cheese. Ooo, melted cheese. 

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