Hog Wild Burger – Oblivion Taproom – Orlando, FL
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Address: Oblivion Taproom
5101 E Colonial Drive
Orlando, FL 32828
On the Web: http://www.obliviontaproom.com
Oblivion Taproom is a newish beer and burger joint in Orlando, Florida. They specialize in craft beers, good food made from scratch and being weird (their words, not mine :). I found this terrific trio of a restaurant by a recommendation from my official Orlando foodie connect, @juliusmayojr of Droolius. Last year he tipped me off on Junior Colombian Burger, so I knew he wouldn’t steer me wrong.
Julius gave me the recommendation back in January, but I forgot to make a note of it on my official “burger list”. Luckily, Oblivion Taproom followed me on Twitter shortly after the seeing the conversation between Julius and I. And I don’t mean “following” in the generic sense of the word, they actually read my tweets!
Case in point: I found myself starving in Orlando after the first day of the trade show I was attending. Tempted by the lure of convenient (but probably lackluster) food on the convention show floor, I tweeted my foodie lament to no one in particular. Surprisingly, about a half hour later I received a reply from @obliviontaproom
@burgerjunkies Hungry? Come get lost in Oblivion!
— Oblivion Taproom (@obliviontaproom) February 17, 2012
By then, I had already made plans to go out to dinner with other trade show attendees, but that tweet was enough of a reminder that Oblivion Taproom was my “don’t miss” place to eat on this trip to Orlando. With an invitation like “Come get lost in Oblivion”, I knew it was a spot I couldn’t pass it up.
My first stop after the second day of the trade show was the 30 minute drive out East Colonial drive to give them a try.
I asked Julius which burger I should try, but his main tip was that was that they were “all good” because of the flavor of the meat. Even after previewing the menu on their website I was undecided, but once I sat down, my server’s (Dawn?) first suggestion was the Hog Wild Burger, so that’s what I went with.
To be honest, the ingredients of the Hog Wild burger read like one of those “extravaganza” type burgers that you eat just to say you conquered it: a beef burger topped with chopped pork, caramelized onions, bacon (What?! Double pork), house BBQ sauce, onion rings and sharp cheddar on a brioche bun. In reality, the Hog Wild burger was a well thought out texture and flavor ride; on par with the amusement parks Orlando is most known for.
As I brought the burger to my mouth, the smokiness from the bbq pork greeted my nostrils with a welcoming aroma. The burger was cooked nicely and the bbq flavor seemed to be infused into every inch of the roughly half pound, hand formed smooth beefy patty. You’d think that chopped pork and bacon might be a pig overload, but the softer texture of the chopped meat combined with the slightly crispier texture of the bacon and crunch of the massive onion ring danced nicely together. I could tell that real care was taken in the preparation of the chopped pork, as it felt like an integral part of the sandwich instead of an exercise in excess. The bun was fresh from a local bakery and held up nicely through the meal.
Speaking of aromas, I had the best cider of my life while at Oblivion (thanks to a tip I saw on the Yelp iPhone app). If you get a chance to have Woodchuck Spring Cider on tap, go get it. You can smell the maple before you take your first sip, but the cider itself isn’t overly sweet. It was the perfect pairing for the sweeter bbq notes in the burger.
The Hog Wild Burger, Oblivion Taproom and the Woodchuck Spring cider scored a triple win in my book. As a nice bonus, after seeing my tweets that I was on my way, the owner took time out to stop by my table and say “hey” and gave me a bit of history on the place. It was interesting to find out that the owners were vegetarian, but their creative Chef Goody definitely wasn’t :) First thing I did when I got home was start my search for Woodchuck Spring Cider in my area. Oblivion Taproom seems a little out of the way, but the trip was well worth it. They had only been open 4 months when I stopped by, but my whole dining experience was smooth from start to finish. Great atmosphere and stand out burger make this a must stop for any of my future visits to Orlando!
Have you been to Oblivion Taproom? What’s your favorite burger there?
- Burger Juiciness (because a dry burger is just wrong) 7
- Bun Goodness (a quality meat holder is essential) 8
- Burger Flavor (is the meat itself extra tastilicious) 8
- Burger Value (you can pay too much for a .99 cent burger and an amazing burger can seem like a steal at $20…and vice versa) 10
- B Factor (this is that super subjective thing that makes each review unique. That gene se qua, that something special about the experience. Could be the special sauce, could be the atmosphere of the joint, could be the ridiculous shakes that you paired the burger with, or it could be some french fries that make you wanna cry) 10
Total Score: 43pts