This country was founded on the basis of one American dream: a warm and gooey grilled cheese.
While I may be stretching the truth a little bit, that’s the exact feeling I get every time I bite into a grilled cheese from The Big Cheeze food truck located here in town.
Owners and MU alumni Tim and Beth Mallory took this on-the-go eatery to the streets last September on a mission to bring cheesy goodness to the residents of Columbia.
The couple realized the potential success of bringing a grilled cheese food truck to Columbia after a visit to Nashville, Tennessee, this past summer where they attended a food truck event in a local park.
“There was about 10 food trucks there of all kinds; they were all real nice, but the only one that had a line was called the Grilled Cheeserie,” Tim says.
With money left over from a previous food stand, they then purchased a food truck, and the Big Cheeze, with a ‘z’ to honor Mizzou, was born.
Ever since then, the Big Cheeze has been serving 10 different grilled cheese sandwich combos, adding something new every two weeks. Each sandwich is accompanied by a bag of chips and a sliced pickle.
The sandwiches feature fresh baked bread from locally owned Upper Crust bakery and the option of choosing from seven different cheeses such as pepper jack or cheddar.
Besides grilled cheese, the Big Cheeze also sells a pulled pork sandwich called The Porky. “I smoke the butts myself, with a little bit of apple wood and mostly hickory for about 15 hours,” Tim says.
Popular sandwiches among customers are the Pig Mac, with gouda, pulled pork, caramelized onions and homemade macaroni and cheese, and When Pigs Fly, which is a grilled cheese featuring turkey and bacon.
For dessert, the Big Cheeze offers the S’more, which features Nutella, marshmallow fluff and graham crackers, otherwise known as heaven.
When asked why he believes the truck has become so popular, Tim believes it’s because of the food. But it only takes one visit to understand it’s more than just the food — it’s the hospitality you receive.