Gourmet mac and cheese

Online culinary school chefs, get ready to bring out the kid inside – mac and cheese is trying to foist its way into elite cooking once again. Mac and cheese has been a staple of moms’ kitchens everywhere, but it has been popping up in elite restaurants like Chicago’s new Coppervine​ recently. Coppervine chooses to serve a lobster variety of the product, but many other chefs are hoping to be a bit more adventurous with their recipes.

Elite mac and cheese
​Cheezie’s recently opened in Frisco, Texas, and mac and cheese is one of the restaurant’s main dishes. Owner Robert Sansone spent more than 20 years as a corporate chef before opening his own establishment. After his years in the industry he knew that he had a love for cheese, and found that most other people did too. His original plan was to serve grilled cheese, but when he approached friends with the idea he found many of them asking, “why not mac and cheese?” Sansone took the idea and ran with it, creating many varieties of the dish with a traditional béchemel sauce from five cheeses. One of his signature dishes includes the Memphis Mac, served with pulled pork, barbeque sauce and fried onions.

Cheezie’s is not alone in this endeavor. A food truck in Maryland called CapMac has been selling mac and cheese since 2010. Recently, it underwent a change of ownership, and is now run by culinary program graduate Josh Warner. Warner chose to purchase the truck because he found it had a strong clientele and wanted to start serving his own creations right away. To help re-introduce the truck to the community, he has set up shop at the Montgomery County Fair.

Both of these chefs are in good company. Chicago has decided to establish a Mac & Cheese Fest that will be hosted in October of this year. The plan is to bring nearly 50 chefs together to serve and taste various takes on the classic dish. Though the event may appeal to the children, it is meant for adults. The food will be served with both wine and craft beer tastings.

For a gourmet mac and cheese that is all your own, try adding flavors or ingredients from your favorite dishes. Baked mac and cheeses are popular these days, with a crunchy and salty top, these are much like savory and cheesy versions of crème brûlée.

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