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Pal's wants you to say cheese — Toasted Cheese

Staff Report • May 17, 2013 at 6:45 PM

KINGSPORT — Celebrating a familiar comfort food with a unique twist is behind a new advertising campaign for Pal’s Toasted Cheese sandwich.

“It’s comfort food that takes grilled cheese to a whole new level,” Thom Crosby, Pal’s Sudden Service president and chief executive officer, said in a release issued Friday.

The 24-unit regional fast food chain serving Tennessee and Southwest Virginia is best known for its Big Pal hamburger, hot dog and 32-ounce Big Tea. Yet its newer Toasted Cheese sandwich had never been the focus of an advertising campaign by the 57-year-old restaurant — until now.

“Like everything else, we do things differently when it comes to Toasted Cheese,” Crosby said. “We take a burger bun and flip it where the top of the bun is on the inside of the sandwich. We toast the bun, add a thick slice of American cheese, tomato, lettuce, mayo and you have an exceptional grilled cheese experience. We’re offering bacon as an option, and nearly 60 percent of our customers can’t resist adding two thick-sliced bacon strips to their Toasted Cheese.”

Since 2008, grilled cheese sandwiches have been on a steady track toward more and more restaurant menus.

“Any time the economy goes south, consumers head toward comfort foods, and there is nothing more comforting than a great grilled cheese,” Crosby said. “The economy is back, but our Toasted Cheese is front and center with our restaurant and our customers are loving it.”

Included in Pal’s new advertising push is a TV campaign featuring a beauty shop discussion on the virtues of the Toasted Cheese (see the YouTube video here).

The success about Pal’s Toasted Cheese has nothing to do with being fancy, Crosby said.

“It’s just plain good,” he said.

Pals Sudden Service was the first restaurant chain to earn the prestigious Baldrige National Quality Award, a U.S. Department of Commerce award for business excellence. It is also a two-time winner of Tennessee’s Quality Excellence Award.

Visit the Pal’s website for more information about the restaurant.

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