Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development

Three’s Company La Madeleine | Based in Dallas

PHOTO CREDIT: Flavor & The Menu Staff

Today’s diners want the chance to sample adventurous flavors in manageable portions—that’s why small plates and dessert flights have taken hold. The same principle applies to the Mini Croque Monsieur Trio, which offers La Madeleine’s guests a sampling of three sandwiches on one plate.

Inspired by sliders, but with a French twist, the mini trio is made up of: Smoked Turkey and Sun-dried Tomato Pesto Croque Monsieur on Country Wheat Bread; Balsamic Marinated Chicken and Basil Pesto Croque Monsieur on Sourdough Bread; and Classic Ham Dijon and Swiss Croque Monsieur on Seven-Grain Bread.

“Each little sandwich has a different and unique taste,” says Susan Dederen, VP of Culinary. “The breads, spreads and proteins make them different, but the classic béchamel and Swiss cheese mix ties each sandwich back to its French roots.” She says offering a variety of tastes on one plate is appealing. “Plus, if you are going to be indulgent—like eating a Croque Monsieur—you want to be sure the taste is worth it.” The trio comes with a light spring mix salad, or with tomato basil soup for comfort-food appeal.

The dish started as a limited-time winter offering, and it’s now an annual winter menu item. And, going back the other way, the mini turkey and chicken Croques Monsieur may be added to the lunch menu as full-sized sandwiches.

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