April is National Grilled Cheese Month.
It’s also National Pecan Month, National Soft Pretzel Month, National Soyfoods Month and Fresh Florida Tomato Month. Actually, it’s National Food Month, too, as well as National Garden Month, Pets are Wonderful Month, Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month and Thai Heritage Month.
But for restaurants seeking a quick promotional hit, the annual celebration of grilled cheese is likely the most useful.
Such promotions can be as simple as that of The Grilled Cheese Factory in Morristown, N.J., which is celebrating with a buy one, get one free special that started on April 12, National Grilled Cheese Day, and continues for the rest of the month.
Cheeseboy, a three-unit quick-service grilled cheese sandwich chain based in Boston, gives out free grilled cheese sandwiches on one day during the month. This year it will give away one Cheeseboy Classic — premium American cheese on Italian bread — per customer on April 22 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. No purchase is necessary.
RELATED: Cheeseboy poised for growth
“Before I even started Cheeseboy, I envisioned this day when we’d just give grilled cheese sandwiches away to everybody,” founder and president Michael Inwald said.
Watch a video of Cheeseboy’s giveaway in 2011; story continues below
Christopher Hill, chef-partner of 3 Way Café in Norfolk, Va., came up with a Grilled Cheese Month Calendar that offers a different sandwich every weekday at prices ranging from $6.99 to $9.99.
“It has caught on like wildfire and has been really cool to see. Our regular customers keep checking back to see what we are offering tomorrow,” Hill said.
His sandwiches have ranged from a traditional one served with tomato soup, to goat cheese and grilled asparagus with apple-onion compote, to a toasted pancake with bacon and cheddar.
On April 30 he’s planning a deep-fried sandwich, made with sourdough bread, two slices of American cheese and tomato essence, made by reducing two cups of tomato water down to a few tablespoons. He’ll tempura-fry the whole thing.
Take a look at some other grilled cheese sandwiches being offered this month.
Union Kitchen in Houston is serving a $6.95 sandwich of Brie, avocado, sundried tomatoes and roasted red bell peppers.
Square Peg, a new restaurant in Philadelphia, has a $12 Mac & Cheese Grilled Cheese sandwich, served with a side of “drunken tomato soup” spiked with pepper-infused vodka.
The Cadillac Grilled Cheese at Firefly in Washington, D.C. is made with gruyère, Cheddar, béchamel sauce and garlic-herb butter. It’s $11, served with mixed greens or fries.
Lobster ME in Las Vegas offers a $10.50 Lobster Grilled Cheese, made of lobster, gruyère, Brie and cream cheese.
Editor's note: This story corrects the date of Cheeseboy's grilled cheese sandwich giveaway.