The Saturday Night Special
Leave it to Matthew Rubiner to turn eating a prosaic grilled cheese sandwich into an event. A few weeks ago, Rubiner decided to start keeping Rubi’s cafe in Great Barrington open until midnight on Saturday nights (it closes at 4 PM the rest of the week) and feature grilled cheese sandwiches and cocktails. “Of the five best things in the world, grilled cheese sandwiches rank second (sorry love, peace and bacon),” he wrote in an email to his customers. “Come early for a coveted patio table. No reservations.”
When we arrived at 10:30 on Saturday night (after seeing The Caretaker at BTF), we discovered that Matt stops making grilled cheese sandwiches at 10 PM, but the joint was jumping anyway. We “settled” for the cheese and pâté platters ($10.50 and $12.50, photo below) and it’s hard to imagine that there is any cheese sandwich as delicious as these pâtés (which our waiter said came from Williamsville Inn in West Stockbridge.) It seemed late for cocktails, so we chose from the small but thoughtful list of beers that includes Nantucket’s Cisco Brewery Whale’s Tale Pale Ale. It was a perfect late night supper, and we drove home happy. Nevertheless, we were determined to try the grilled cheese and could not wait for Saturday so we went to Rubi’s for lunch this week. At $5, the Classic—comté on pullman white—is a scrumptious bargain. Besides using great ingredients, Rubiner has his own technique for making grilled cheese sandwiches: He wraps them in parchment paper before putting them in the panini press, which means the sandwiches never touch a dirty grill. The result? It’s just as Rubiner had promised in his email about the wonders of melted cheese: “When it flows like magma from seared, buttered bread, it ascends nearly to heaven.”
264 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA; 413.528.0488
Monday - Friday 7 AM - 4 PM; Saturday 8 AM - midnight; Sunday 8 AM - 4 PM.