Friday, March 26, 2010

Monte Cristo Sandwiches: the Top Five

Posted By on Fri, Mar 26, 2010 at 12:30 PM

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​Kansas City has long enjoyed a love affair with the name Monte Cristo -- in the 1800s, the actor James O'Neill (father of playwright Eugene O'Neill) performed the title role in The Count of Monte Cristo at the old Coates Opera House no fewer than nine times between 1884 and 1900. The sandwich of the same name, traditionally turkey and chicken or ham and Swiss cheese tucked into two slices of bread, dipped in beaten egg and sauteed in butter -- is a version of the Parisian croque monsieur sandwich, which is almost always made with ham and cheese and also dipped in beaten egg before frying.

One of the venues that claim to have "invented" the Monte Cristo sandwich is the legendary Hotel Del Coronado on Coronado Island in California. There's a Kansas City connection to that hotel: Kansas Citian Barney Goodman -- the owner of the Bellerive Hotel on Armour Boulevard -- owned the property from 1948 to 1960.

But where are the best Monte Cristo sandwiches in town? Follow the jump and find out.

5. Fran's Classic Diner -- the 24-hour joint in the Power & Light District is a Canadian-based chain, so you'd expect there to be enough French influence for a very ooh-la-la Monte Cristo, even if the kitchen does use Texas toast.

4. Chaz on the Plaza -- The basement-level dining room in the Raphael Hotel does a first-rate Monte Cristo.

3. One80 -- This Westport venue makes a truly satisfying version of the classic sandwich.

2. Succotash -- Owner Beth Barden calls her version "The Count of Monte Delicious." And it is!

1. Cheddar's Casual Cafe -- A sandwich so light and airy, it tastes like meat and cheese in a doughnut!

 

(Image via Flickr: Andy Castro)

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