Eco-Products has teamed up with The Melt to solve a mystery that has vexed chefs, restaurants and caterers for decades: How to keep grilled cheese sandwiches hot, crispy and "ooey gooey" until delivered, according to a company press release.
The Melt, which needed a catering solution to deliver its grilled cheese sandwiches, developed advanced technology to create the new "Smart Box" — the food industry's first catering delivery system using sophisticated software to perfectly balance humidity, heat and air circulation, said Jonathan Kaplan, CEO of The Melt.
It then partnered with Eco-Products to design compostable containers that would complement the new Smart Box. The Eco-Products' design team created a new container that acts as a sort of portable convection oven to keep sandwiches tasting just as good at their destination as they do in the restaurant. In addition to grilled cheese, the new Eco-Products container works perfectly with The Melt's cheeseburgers, too, Kaplan said.
"We want to ensure the best product experience for our guests in store, at the office, or for any occasion," he said. "We just couldn't find an existing catering delivery solution that could do the job, so we invented one ourselves."
The container is 100 percent compostable – meaning it's not only good for customers, it's good for the environment, according to Wendell Simonson, VP for Eco-Products, who said the Colorado-based company designed the box with a number of innovative features, including:
- Crisping ridges: These ridges elevate the sandwich off the base and allow air to flow around the sandwich. This prevents moisture from becoming trapped underneath the sandwich, keeping the bread hot and crispy
- Moisture ventilation: Strategically placed ventilation slots allow moisture and cooler air to escape.
"The result is sandwiches delivered to your home or office that taste just as good as they do at the restaurant," Simonson said. “It's something you have to taste to believe."
The Melt is now expanding into Colorado, with five planned locations. The first two locations opened last month in Lone Tree and Denver with three other metro Denver locations set to open in the next few months.
"We're happy to see The Melt opening restaurants in our home state," Simonson said. "We're huge fans of natural, wholesome foods here, so we know The Melt will be successful."