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Above 96th: Earl’s Beer & Cheese

2 Jul

To kick off my Above 96th Street Food Series, I decided to try Earl’s.

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Earl’s is a tiny gem on Park Ave between 97th and 98th. It probably seats 12 people max between the communal table and bar stools around the perimeter. It’s a very laid back, homey feeling place with a short menu that is executed really well. Cash only!

We started off with the beer cheese…delish. Beer cheese is pretty big in Kentucky. It’s usually cheddar based processed cheese to which beer and spices such as garlic and dried mustard are added. Toasted bread with garlic cloves for rubbing followed by a good smear of beer cheese hit the spot.

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Here comes THE grilled cheese. I’m talkin’ NY State Cheddar, Pork Belly, Kimchi, Fried Egg on Sourdough grilled cheese.

Close up!

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The bread was perfectly toasted and the pork belly was succulent. I was very skeptical of the kimchi but it provided a little heat and a good textural contrast to the soft egg and chewy pork belly. The only downside was that the kimchi made the bread soggy. Oh yeah. Can’t forget about the beer…Cheers!

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