The Castello "Curd Nerd" reveals how to enjoy the perfect grilled cheese sandwich

Celebrate National Grilled Cheese Day with these tips from Katie Sautner, Castello's New Product Development Manager.
Food Network & Cooking Channel New York City Wine & Food Festival Presented By Coca-Cola - Grand
Food Network & Cooking Channel New York City Wine & Food Festival Presented By Coca-Cola - Grand / Dia Dipasupil/GettyImages

April 12 is National Grilled Cheese Day and if ever there was an easy meal we all know and love, this might just be it. As a big fan of grilled cheese sandwiches, there is something fun about learning how other people make their sandwiches. What cheese are you using? Are you adding things other than cheese to the mix? And do you prefer butter or mayo to get that perfect crisp on the outside?

Recently, we had the opportunity to learn more about Castello Cheeses and even ask some questions of their resident "Curd Nerd." If you were wondering, a curd nerd is a cheese expert. They know all about cheese and have plenty of tips for those of us looking to make the perfect grilled cheese.

Not only did we get to try some different cheeses, including Gouda and Havarti, to make unique grilled cheese sandwiches, but we also tried these cheeses in some other dishes as well, including a quiche! It was easy to determine that Castello knew what they were doing with their cheeses. And we love that. We love cheese experts.

But if you want to make the perfect grilled cheese or find other ways to use excess cheese (whatever that means), here are some tips that Castello's resident curd nerd, Katie Sautner, shared with us.

"Curd Nerd" Katie Sautner shares some cheesy tips for great grilled cheese sandwiches and more

Culturess: What are some of the best cheeses for making a grilled cheese?

Katie Sautner: "Our go-to cheese for grilled cheese has to be Havarti! It’s buttery, sweet flavor and its creamy texture makes it the perfect melting cheese. Authentically Danish Havarti has superior meltability compared to other cheeses like cheddar or parmesan because it has a higher fat content. We also love a creamy Gouda which is great for adding a bit of sweet nutty flavor with excellent melt as well. A fall favorite grilled cheese of ours is our Smoked Gouda, apple & honey drizzle grilled cheese. Super simple, but it has a subtle smokey, sweet and salty flavor."

C: What are some of the best uses for Havarti cheese?

KS: "Havarti is definitely one of the most versatile cheeses, because of its mild, buttery flavor and it’s semi-soft, creamy texture. Like our  is perfect for melting in a grilled cheese or our  melted on top of a . We also love the caramel flavor of our ; which is a true conversation starter at a party, served on a cheeseboard or shaved on a . And last but certainly not least, our Creamy Havarti elevates even the best  with its buttery, creamy flavor! 

There also is a fun cheese recipe trending right now on social media called a “Chickle”, linked . It’s where you melt cheese in a frying pan (Havarti of course), add a dill pickle and continue frying until it creates a cheese chip with a pickle in the center. Dill really is such a hot flavor that this trend would be elevated with our Dill Havarti."

C: What are some suggestions for how to make a perfect grilled cheese every time?

KS: "We know grilled cheese making can be very personal, that’s why we recommend really exploring the different flavors Castello Havarti offers and having fun with it. One of our favorite grilled cheese pairings has to be our Dessert Grilled Cheese which is made with Nutella, raspberry preserve and our Aged Havarti. It’s the perfect blend of savory, sweet and salty.

A few other grilled cheese making hacks we love that make a great grilled cheese are instead of butter, spread a thin layer of mayo on the outside of the bread. The mayo makes the bread super crispy and golden in color. We also recommend starting on medium heat and covering the sandwich in a frying pan, then after flipping the sandwich, uncover so the sandwich crisps up nicely. Covering will ensure an even melt throughout the entire sandwich will give you the ultimate cheese pull!"

dark. Next. Harrison Ford isn’t just an iconic actor, he also knows how to make an elevated grilled cheese. Harrison Ford isn’t just an iconic actor, he also knows how to make an elevated grilled cheese