By Richard Currey
Hot Krust opened a couple months back in the location left vacant when Delish New York Bakery closed. The interior has been completely redone, however, they managed to keep the small outdoor seating area that many people enjoy on their lunch break.
Located next to the Whole Foods Market in Dr. Phillips, you would think that you are walking into a chain. This is due to the fact that the logo, layout and décor have the appearance of a level of professionalism that has been refined over the years through market research and trial and error. However, Hot Krust is indeed a one of a kind panini place where fresh is the key.
All the sandwiches are made to order and the meats are made fresh daily. They pride themselves on not being processed and you can tell by the quality of the food. Now, one would assume a restaurant that maintains such high standards for food quality would come with a hefty price tag, but in this instance that assumption would be wrong. The sandwich prices range between $6-$8 and can be made into a number of different combos for just a few dollars more.
On my first visit I decided to give the Fondue Turkey ($5.99) a shot. The sandwich with roasted turkey, Havarti, Monterey Jack and cream cheeses, tomatoes, red onion and fresh pesto was a creamy delight. The pesto cut through the cheese with just the right amount of herbaceous zest. Upgrading to the Combo #2 (+$3) I was able to enjoy their wonderful waffle fries and a small drink. Now for those of you who are health conscious, the fries aren’t fried at all, they are actually baked to a wonderful crispness.
On my return visit I opted for something a little less cheesy and went with the Cowboy Jack ($6.99). The sandwich was another hit. With freshly roasted steak, horseradish, peppercorn, black olives, tomatoes, spinach, red onions, and Monterey Jack cheese it was a big sandwich with just the right amount of kick.
If the owners of this establishment were smart, they would begin to look for franchisees to open locations in the local area and possibly look at going state wide.
Richard Currey is a writer/editor that has lived in East Orlando for the last 14 years, moving here to become a student at UCF. You can follow him on twitter at @FatGuyFix to keep up to date with his food travels as well as his other personal thought