Cheeseboy, America’s First Quick-service Grilled Cheese Concept, Exhibits at the IFE as it Prepares For Franchising this Year
June 14, 2012 // Franchising.com // Boston, Mass. – Since opening in 2009, Cheeseboy, America’s first quick-service grilled cheese concept, has quickly expanded to eight units in five states and will exhibit for the first time at the International Franchise Expo at the Javits Center in New York June 15 – 17, Booth #262.
As the company advances its plans to franchise this year, Cheeseboy has hired veteran restaurant executive Sidney Lee, who spent 11 years at Starbucks Coffee Company managing franchise development and licensee relationships, to direct this effort.
Expanding outward from its Boston hub, Cheeseboy’s newest locations include the Newport Centre Mall (Jersey City, NJ) and the relocation of its Milford, Conn. store (to the I-95 Southbound travel plaza).
“We look forward to introducing the Cheeseboy brand to all of the attendees at the International Franchise Expo,” said Cheeseboy Founder and President Michael Inwald. “We are focused on identifying experienced multi-unit operators who can serve as partners with us and represent our brand well as we continue on our path of growth. We put tremendous value on service and delivering a great customer experience, in addition to making a great grilled cheese. We hope to find like-minded partners at the show.”
Behind the Brand:
Inwald got the idea for a quick-service grilled cheese restaurant while enrolled in a start-up incubator program as an MBA candidate at the Yale School of Management. In the summer of 2009, he began testing his restaurant idea at country fairs throughout Connecticut. Rave reviews led him to take a leave of absence from school to open his first restaurant in Milford, Conn., then named simply "Grilled Cheese To Go."
With his first location successfully launched, Michael began developing plans to take the company to the next level. In the summer of 2010, he relocated the company's headquarters to Boston, added to his executive team and researched real estate in the area, targeting Boston's South Station for the first location.
As Michael grew his business, friends affectionately began referring to him by the nickname "Cheeseboy." Preparing for the Boston launch, he took the opportunity to rebrand the restaurants as “Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese To Go,” giving a more personal flavor to the company.
Owning the Grilled Cheese Category:
With a dedicated focus on serving classic, delicious grilled cheese sandwiches, freshly made with premium ingredients by a welcoming staff, Cheeseboy celebrates the grilled cheese with promotions throughout the year.
Cheeseboy’s signature event is its Annual Free Grilled Cheese Day, held each April during National Grilled Cheese Month. Cheeseboy gives away the Cheeseboy Classic – Italian bread with creamy white American cheese – during a designated afternoon, resulting in great social media chatter about the brand from grateful customers. To view scenes from Cheeseboy’s first Annual Free Grilled Cheese Day, visit www.youtube.com/gocheeseboy.
The company recently launched a Monthly Melt program, offering customers a creative sandwich combo every month. The most recent Monthly Melt is The Cheeseboy Club, made with Italian bread, Muenster cheese, all-natural turkey, applewood bacon and dill pickles.
Inwald insists on quality as the hallmark of Cheeseboy’s brand. He has developed proprietary bread recipes that ensure a crisp, hearty sandwich. Additionally, Cheeseboy slices cheese on premise to assure freshness.
Cheeseboy’s menu includes five cheeses, four breads, and fresh meat and veggie toppings such as turkey, bacon, ham, pickles, jalapenos, tomatoes and basil. Customers can order one of Cheeseboy's four Signature Sandwiches or customize their own. Hearty soups, snacks, desserts, fruit and beverages complete the menu.
Cheeseboy is committed to supporting Paul Newman’s SeriousFun Children’s Network (formerly the Association of Hole in the Wall Camps), an international organization that provides year-round camp experiences to children with chronic and life-threatening conditions, including cancer, hemophilia, AIDS, sickle-cell disease, motor-neuron diseases and many other medical conditions.
The company holds a fundraising day for SeriousFun in line with new store openings and to date has raised over $15,000. Cheeseboy also hosts customer donation boxes at each register.
Inwald volunteers one week of time at Double H Ranch, a SeriousFun Camp located in New York’s Adirondack Mountains. His family has been involved with the camps for years. For more information about SeriousFun Children’s Network, including their volunteer program, please visit www.seriousfunnetwork.org.
“This is an exciting time for our company,” said Inwald. “Driven by consumers’ love of comfort food and our passionate focus on quality, we’ve been able to build significant momentum for our business in a short period of time. We look forward to taking things to the next level this year by identifying the right franchise partners who will help us expand the brand across the country.”
About Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese To Go
Cheeseboy: Grilled Cheese To Go, America’s first quick-service grilled cheese restaurant concept, has been delivering comfort to its customers since its founding in 2009. Cheeseboy prides itself on serving wholesome grilled cheese sandwiches, soups, snacks and other items in a welcoming environment. Committed to excellence in food quality, Cheeseboy uses all-natural breads, high-quality cheeses and fresh meat and vegetable toppings. Since opening its first location, Cheeseboy has committed its philanthropic efforts to benefit Paul Newman’s SeriousFun Children’s Network through grand opening fundraisers and managing donation boxes at all stores. Currently, Cheeseboy operates eight locations: Boston’s South Station and Prudential Center, South Shore Plaza in Braintree, Mass., Natick Mall in Natick, Mass., Palisades Center in West Nyack, NY, Providence Place Mall in Providence, RI and Newport Centre in Jersey City, NJ and Milford, CT. For more information, please visit www.cheeseboy.com, Facebook www.facebook.com/gocheeseboy or Twitter @gocheeseboy. To learn more about the Cheeseboy journey, visit www.youtube.com/gocheeseboy.