Rigsby's grilled cheese happy hour

Shelley Mann, Columbus Alive

In an effort to get more people eating at the bar, Rigsby's has launched a new happy hour special featuring $5 grilled cheeses on Wednesdays. So what sets Rigsby's new grilled cheese happy hour apart from a certain other happy hour, just up High Street, where you can snag $1 grilled cheeses on Mondays? Well, just about everything, from the bread (it's from Rigsby's own Eleni-Christina bakery) to the cheeses, which range from gruyere to pecorino, to the toppings, like bacon and olives and roasted onions. Yes, those extra $4 are very, very worth it.

From the inaugural menu, I ordered the Farmer, because it's made with my favorite of the Eleni-Christina breads--the raisin-walnut multigrain. Dollops of sweet and creamy Ohio goat cheese stand in for the usual melted cheddar or what have you, and it's paired with a handful of arugula and some grilled onions. It's a perfectly balanced, perfectly light sandwich.

I also tried half of the Croque Monsieur, a heartier option served open-faced on sourdough. The main draw is Canal Junction's nutty gruyere-type cheese, which pairs beautifully with a bechamel sauce, lonza (a cured ham) and crispy roasted onions. Other options on the first menu included a cheddar-and-bacon Americano, a Caprese on herb focaccia and a Mediterraneo topped with roasted peppers, capers, olives and onions.