• STV
  • MySTV

St Andrews beach shack is hotspot for grilled cheese experiments

A couple’s shared love for grilled cheese inspires growing empire based on the humble toastie.

If couple Kate Carter and Sam Larg are ever having a bad day, the answer to lifting their mood can almost always be found in that first glorious bite of a cheese toastie.

The moreish combination of melted stringy cheese sandwiched perfectly between some fresh bread cannot be beaten as far as Kate and Sam are concerned.

It is their ultimate comfort food and a love they have always shared. It did not come as too much of a surprise for their friends then when they announced they were going to build a business on this tried and tested combination.

Beginning their vision for The Cheesy Toast Shack in a converted trailer, the couple toured festivals like Glastonbury and were delighted with the response fellow cheese fans had with their menu, including a string of accolades such as being named the best place to eat at the Fringe during their debut year, a Scottish street food finalist last year and the winners of street vendors of the year at the 2018 Menu Awards.

Two years on, they now have a pop-up business for events, a permanent trailer at Kingsbarns beach and a new kiosk at East Sands beach in St Andrews.

Building on the momentum, they are in the process of converting a shipping container and turning it into a mobile kitchen, with its first outing being the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this August.

And, it seems this couple are not the only cheese-loving fans who have turned to this niche market with businesses like Meltmongers in Edinburgh and Melt in Aberdeen also offering menus revolving around the grilled cheese concept.

Flavour fun: Kate and Sam change the menu regularly to include seasonal produce.
Flavour fun: Kate and Sam change the menu regularly to include seasonal produce. The Cheesy Toast Shack

For Kate and Sam, experimenting with different flavours is very much a part of their ethos. From Nutella and mascarpone to balsamic mushroom with blackcurrant mayo jam and camembert, Kate says there is nothing they wouldn't experiment with when it comes to cheese pairings.

"Sam and I started The Cheesy Toast Shack due to mainly a total love of cheese," she says.

"It's the ultimate comfort food. You've had a bad day; have some grilled cheese. It's cold outside; have some grilled cheese. You've been on a diet all week and it's the weekend; have some grilled cheese.

"It's pretty much the answer to everything, or always has been in our lives at least."

While they enjoy experimenting with new flavours, there are a couple of permanent features which can always be found on their menu, with their most popular dish being the Mac 'N' Cheese toastie.

"We came up with this right at the start of our venture and developed our best possible secret recipe, and it's not stopped selling since we put it on the menu," Kate says.

"Other items come and go, however, we're famous for our Mac 'N' Cheese.

"Our Mac 'N' Cheese gets a lot of remarks about being a 'weird' concept before people try it, however, the Scots love a Macaroni Pie so it's not too out there if you think of it like that."

Their Mac 'N' Cheese toastie is the most popular option for customers.
Their Mac 'N' Cheese toastie is the most popular option for customers. The Cheesy Toast Shack

Making the most of their Fife location, the couple are passionate about using local produce and change their menu throughout the year depending on what's in season.

"Scotland has a lot to be proud for in terms of its food, especially where we're based" Kate says.

"We often work alongside St Andrews Farmhouse Cheese Company whose cheese is just the best we've used.

"In the spring, we work with the guys at Balgove Larder to source their seasonal wild garlic pesto.

"We've just had an Arbroath Smokie special on. We served this with mature Scottish cheddar, onions with a white wine and garlic sauce, lardons and sliced eggs.

"And we have previously done a seafood toastie with lobsters caught on Kingsbarns beach by local fishermen."

Kate adds: "In the cooler months, we sometimes incorporate more hearty fillings, such as our fire cracker pulled pork toastie, which is a 12-hour slow cooked pulled pork, with our homemade firecracker sauce, emmental cheese and sauerkraut.

"I think that Scots can recognise decent quality food and, rightly so, feel a sense of pride knowing it's come from Scotland itself."

Download: The STV News app is Scotland's favourite and is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from Google Play. Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This must be at least 6 characters long.
ShowHide
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long.
You must be over 16 to join STV.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
We need this to check that you live in an STV region.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid postcode
Would you like us to email you about our great shows and services from time to time?
We'll only send emails we think you'll like (see example) based on information you have supplied and shows you have watched on STV Player. For details on emails and advertising, see our STV & You page.
Would you like to receive emails from the Scottish Children's Lottery about draws, instant games and competitions?
We support the Scottish Children's Lottery (SCL), which is managed by our colleagues at STV ELM Ltd. You can find out more about the SCL on it's website, including its Privacy Policy.

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, and understand our Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.