Swiss Chalet has a nostalgic spot in my stomach. There was a time when my family would regularly visit the one nearby. Price-wise, it was cheaper than the other chains which was reason enough for my family to eat out.
There is one Swiss Chalet in Red Deer, located in the south side in the vicinity of Sobeys.
I decided to take my wife here so that she could share in the joy that my family had with Swiss Chalet for so many years. As well, I wanted to introduce her to the famous chalet sauce.
The interior, looking relatively new, was clean and comfortable. Families were eating all around us which points to their demographics.
Menus were dropped off though I didn’t need to open mine.
I am a creature of habit and as such, I have ordered the same meal every time in all the years that I have eaten at Swiss Chalet. I ordered my usual Rotisserie Chicken Club Wrap. It contains their rotisserie chicken, swiss cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and garlic mesquite spread wrapped within a flour tortilla. It comes with a choice of sides of which I always order fries. Their famous chalet sauce also accompanies the meal.
The Rotisserie Chicken Club Wrap was diagonally cut and propped up nicely on the plate. Obvious grill marks were present on the tortilla, but it could use a bit more time on the grill as the tortilla remained a bit soft and lacked that crunchy texture to enhance the wrap.
There was plenty of chicken (mixed of dark and white meat) with a piece of lettuce around the inner border of the wrap. The chicken was dry and had minimal flavor which is typical in all the years that I have ordered this wrap. That’s why the famous chalet sauce is a necessity.
There was a slice of swiss cheese and a slice of bacon in the center of the wrap with a sliver of tomato trapped in the outer circumference. Because of the sparse amount of cheese, bacon, lettuce, and tomato, the flavors were minimal, masked by the amount of chicken. This is also why grilling the tortilla is critical as it is the major textural contributor. I have had this wrap with a crispier tortilla in the past so it can be done.
So to save it all, in came the famous chalet sauce. I always ask for 2 cups more on top of the one that automatically accompanies the meal. Trust me, it’s essential. The sauce is tangy and mildly spicy with a cinnamon undercurrent. I always dip my Rotisserie Chicken Club Wrap in the famous chalet sauce before each bite.
The fries were very crispy and airy though a bit greasy. To counteract the greasy back-end and to elevate the fries, I slathered every fry with the famous chalet sauce before eating. The two meeting is kismet in my mouth. This is what I remembered from all my past visits. The combination of their crispy fries and famous chalet sauce brings me home. So I am going to admit here that when I get through each cup, I always wipe the sides clean with a fry. There is never a drop of sauce left when I am finished.
My wife decided to order a flatbread and went with the Hickory Rotisserie Chicken Flatbread. The flatbread uses the same rotisserie chicken in all their other meals along with monterey jack cheese, bacon, mayo, and hickory mesquite BBQ sauce. I persuaded my wife to choose fries because in secret, I just wanted more fries.
The flatbread had light “toast” marks, but like the tortilla wrap, remained a bit soft. The next time I order either one, I am going to request more grill time.
Like the wrap, the rotisserie chicken was dry with minimal flavor but for the flatbread, the hickory mesquite BBQ sauce came through. It packed a punch in flavor and was so dominant that the monterey jack cheese, bacon, and mayo had minimal roles. Texture-wise, the bacon, like in the wrap, was missing the crisp that would have helped the flatbread.
I ended up dipping the flatbread in the famous chalet sauce which gave the needed moisture and an additional dimension of flavor. Honestly, I think the famous chalet sauce is key to Swiss Chalet. It goes well with everything.
Surprisingly, my wife was not a fan of the famous chalet sauce. Looking back, I do remember a time in the beginning when I thought the famous chalet sauce was odd. Perhaps it is an acquired taste.
I “helped” her finish her side of fries along with the remaining amount of famous chalet sauce.
This meal did not recreate the magic from all those years ago though the famous chalet sauce was as delicious as ever. I think the challenge for any Swiss Chalet is the turnover of rotisserie chickens. They cannot be made to order so unless there is high traffic, it is hard to get one that just finished cooking. I experienced this when ordering rotisserie chickens at grocery chains and often would decide on the spot to get one if I saw them coming off the rotisserie oven. A fresh one straight out of the oven makes a big difference.
I expect to swing by Swiss Chalet again the next time I have an itch for their famous chalet sauce and crispy french fries.