Just called the Ham & Cheese, it features the jambon de Paris – the cooked ham from Paris – Gruyère, and is slathered with some Dijon-spiked butter in between a slice of a section of one of Common Bond’s excellent, crusty baguettes. Fairly straightforward and not that large, it’s quite enjoyable, with the nutty, rich and delicious Gruyère – a step up from that slice of industrial cheese used in most homes – and the bite of a bit of mustard complementing the ham. But the tasty, fresh baguette really helps make this a savory treat. You can’t have a good sandwich without good bread, and this bread is better than what you are usually using for sandwiches.
The Ham & Cheese can be ordered warmed or not. Warmed is the better choice, as the cheese gets melted some. Though just $8.99 at the drive-thru versions of Common Bond, the sit-down ones charge $11.50 for it, but for the additional two-and-half dollars it comes in two halves skewered with a lengthy, sturdy toothpick, not necessarily an attractive presentation, but a different one.
Common Bond’s ham and cheese seems to be a take on the famed Parisian Jambon Beurre sandwich, which is just the ham, butter and baguette. Europeans can seem to shy away from combining ham and cheese on sandwiches. Philippe Schmit’s newish modern bistro, PS-21, takes the same tact as Common Bond and adorns its similar sandwich with cheese, too. Ham and cheese is popular in America, rightly so.