By Adrienne Vertucci and Patrick McAuliffe
From the same people who brought you “Additional Top-Bing-S Cost Extra,” Binghamton’s finest pizza review, we now bring you “Mac N Cheesus,” Binghamton’s finest Macaroni and Cheese review. This delicacy is a childhood staple, especially for picky kids or lazy parents. It’s even good for lazy and or childish college students! Like any good cuisine, however, it can get rather extravagant– none of that “add water and microwave” bullshit, no no. There’s a few places in the area that serve some bomb af mac and cheese, and we’re here to tell you where is best. That way, you don’t have to spend hours and hours schlepping yourselves downtown on the buses or all the way home to your parents.
Galaxy Brewing Company: The first place on our list is Galaxy, a place that is known for their nine trillion craft beers. We ordered the Beer Cheese Mac and Cheese, and it was far more delicious than you’d think by the name of it. Personally, beer makes me think of frat parties, and frat parties are not things that I enjoy mixing with cheese. However, the waitress brought out a tremendous bowl full of large shells completely covered in cheese sauce. It was pretty light in color, lighter than the radioactive color of Kraft, and had a much smoother consistency. It was nice and creamy, with a very faint taste of beer–but not the shitty kind of beer, the craft kind. The cheese flavor wasn’t overpowering, which was awesome since I honestly don’t like cheese that much. The dish as a whole was relatively mild flavored, with a cool little twist that set them apart so that you knew it was from a brewery. For the bowl that we split, sized somewhere in between a half and full-sized bowl at the Colonial, the price was $8. A smaller, individual-sized bowl is $5.
The Colonial: The second place that we visited was the famous Colonial. Apparently they’re famous for their burgers, but they damn well should be famous for their mac and cheese as well. That shit was FIRE. We inhaled both of our flavors in record time. Adrienne got plain, and it was another very mild sauce, just like Galaxy, but slightly less beer flavored and more cheese flavored. The menu said “cheddar and gouda,” and it was really goud-a (ha ha kill me). There was a mild floury taste to it, and it was almost like there was bread or breadcrumbs in it? Patrick got the Cajun Chorizo flavor, with peppers, onions, cayenne powder, and shredded chorizo. Everything was very oily, but in the really excellent, “glad-to-have-this-heart-attack” kind of way. White people, stay away; it’s a little bit spicy for your taste. Simply put, the Colonial’s mac and cheese tasted homemade, almost like something your mom would make for the holidays. A half-sized bowl like the ones we got (and that you’ll inhale very quickly) is $8 for the traditional mac and $8.50 for the Cajun Chorizo mac.
(For When You’re Feeling Lazy) Boxed Macaroni and Cheese: After trying out all these fun places, we decided to review a simple box of mac and cheese–Wegman’s brand specifically. The previous dishes were all moderately yellow, so for this review we went with their white mac and cheese just for fun (and because The Rat recently had their White Out rave; see back cover). It literally tasted like childhood in a box (because I too spent my childhood in a box). As I ate it, I felt my arteries closing up and my heart giving out, but in a good way. Flavor-wise, it didn’t really taste like much of anything at all, which was expected because, shit, it was just 99 cents!
CopperTop Campus Mac: If you just didn’t have enough easy options for mac and cheese, check out CopperTop’s take on the true classic. You’ll receive a hearty Tupperware-sized helping of twisty fusilli noodles, runny cheese sauce, pieces of string cheese that melt and form that sweet, sweet cheese pull, and crumbled croutons on top. We’ve found that it’s very difficult to mix together all the sauces and crumbs without at least a glob of cheese or a few noodles being lost to the edge of the bowl. All in all, however, it gets the job done, and you’ll usually have leftovers for later because of their large portions. For $7.99, you could probably get better quality mac, but in a pinch, CopperTop can deliver a delicious dinner meal.
The Verdict: Adrienne’s favorite was The Colonial’s traditional mac, while Patrick enjoyed Galaxy’s “beer cheese” mac and cheese the most. So get on out there! You have cheese to eat and arteries to clog!