Christin’s Cuts: American Meltdown

Chapelboro’s Steve McQuaid (The Hungry Heel) checks out American Meltdown, an award-winning food truck eatery serving the Triangle melted, ooey-gooey goodness. A more definitive term would be “grilled cheese” but it’s more than that — a gourmet twist on the childhood favorite. It’s not just bread and cheddar with these guys, no way! American Meltdown takes nostalgia and cutting edge flavor combinations to create best selling sandwiches like the “Pigs-N-Figs,” a delightful marriage of black mission figs, speck, goat cheese and drizzled reduced balsamic vinegar housed between two pieces of La Farm Bakery’s sourdough bread. That’s only one of their signature sandwiches and the rest are just as inventive. The menu also changes along with the seasons, taking advantage of fresh local produce.

Steve took a moment to talk with the owner, Paul, and ask him, “Why grilled cheeses?” In the video Paul explains how he came to the decision and which other foods he had in mind. Naturally a cook like Paul would have been successful with any food foundation, but it goes with out saying grilled cheese certainly seems to have been the home run choice. With behind the scenes footage of the kitchen, the prep work, the cooking and the food truck crew in action, you’ll get a real idea of what it takes to deliver the gastronomic gold that has made American Meltdown a famous favorite around Orange County!

american meltdown smaller

Christin’s Cuts: Johnny’s Gone Fishing

Johnny’s Gone Fishing is a landmark in Carrboro that has been in existence for more than 40 years. Having seen multiple incarnations from a bait and tackle shop to what is now, a community institution and cultural destination, Johnny’s mere inventory sets it apart. There’s locally roasted coffee, glass bottle cokes, eggs, milk, candies and cakes. It’s a general store meets environmentally friendly coffee shop and the outcome is nothing short of wonderful. Local musicians play indoor tunes every Thursday and Sunday and there is also a community garden. No matter your taste, preference or activity level, Johnny’s has something to offer.

Johnny’s has endured its share of battles the past two years. But the neighboring community and Johnny’s owner, Jan Halle, have worked out their differences and found common ground. Jan took charge of the property, installed a new manager, Susan Siplon, and developed a new vibe that everyone could get with. It’s a testament to the community of Carrboro and Johnny’s staff that things were settled with grace and understanding.

Johnny’s has withstood a history that would have crumbled many a business, but through good human nature, neighborly love and a passion for community, Johnny’s lives on…