Monday, March 30, 2009

Elvis-Sized Portions Redeem So-So Cheeburger Cheeburger

Can you imagine the thinking that went on to create Cheeburger Cheeburger? Name, name, hmmm... I’ve got it! Let’s name ourselves after a SNL skit that no one under 40 remembers. Food, food, hmm… We’ve gotta be different; let’s serve hamburgers, fries and milkshakes. Theme, theme, hmmm… Okay, get this: we’ll be like nothing else out there if we theme the place as a fifties diner!

No, I’m serious. That’s the concept behind Cheeburger Cheeburger. But I think there’s a little more to it than that. They’ve really tried to take a dated concept and take it to a new level. They don’t serve any old greasy spoon burger. Their burgers are huge and use Black Angus beef. They don’t just have milkshakes. They have 75 flavors of milkshakes that include some unique ones like watermelon, brownie batter, chocolate covered pretzel, Caribbean rum, and cinnamon bun. Even the wait staff is different from the norm. No sassy, middle-aged waitresses here. All the servers at Cheeburger Cheeburger are young, friendly and smiling. You won’t hear Elvis tunes blasting from the jukebox. Well, yea, you will hear that. Some things are sacred.

I ordered the ½ Pound (actually 10 oz.) “Serious” Cheeburger ($7.99) with Blue Cheese, onions and tomato. There are no burgers on the menu with pre-selected toppings. You get to choose whatever you want from a multitude of traditional and non-traditional toppings. All burgers come with cheese (you pick from American, Bleu, Swiss, Feta, Pepper Jack, Mozzarella, Cheddar, Provolone or a mix of Jack and Cheddar cheese). Some may enjoy this decision process, but I prefer to order from a pre-selected menu of choices. I’m not a burger cook. Shouldn’t the cook know how to put together toppings for burgers? My Cheeburger was served well done, not even close to the medium I ordered. It was gray throughout with no charring on the outside of the patty. It was a large patty, however, and was flavorful. The bun was fresh and the Bleu cheese was tangy and quite delicious. I wondered why I wasted my time selecting toppings. There were a couple of slender, tasteless onion slices and one wilted tomato slice the size of a half dollar. A single, toothpick-skewered olive atop the bun was a nice touch.

My guest’s “Semi-Serious” 1/3 pound (7 oz.) Cheeburger was also served well done instead of the medium as ordered. There were only 5 customers in the restaurant. Surely the cook wasn’t distracted by too many orders at once to cook our burgers as ordered.

We attempted to order a basket of “Frings” ($5.29), what Cheeburger Cheeburger calls a combination of French fries and onion rings. Our waiter stopped us by informing us that a half size order ($4.29) would be plenty and would save us a dollar. He was right. The half size was enormous. Both the fries and rings were cooked perfectly brown and were not greasy at all. The rings could have used a little more onion flavor and were not the kind where the onion pulls out of the breading when you bite into them. Those are the best.

I tried a cherry “Shake-a-Soda” ($2.29) for my beverage. It was a soda water and flavored syrup based drink shaken by hand. It sounded great but just wasn’t sweet enough for me. Also available was Egg Cream Soda. I may try that on my next visit.

For dessert we both tried milkshakes ($3.19 half size). With all the flavors available we couldn’t make up our minds right away. We finally decided on brownie batter and mint chocolate chip. They were both disappointing. We expected the mint to be a bright green. It was a pale shade of green. We expected the brownie batter to be a deep brown. It was pale brown. The mint chocolate chip shake tasted like vanilla and so did the brownie batter. Seriously. 75 flavors of shakes that all taste like vanilla? I hope that’s not the case but it was for the two flavors we tried.

Service was friendly and mostly attentive. Our waiter did disappear for a short spell after we ordered the milkshakes and a different server brought them over. Perhaps our server was too embarrassed to serve them? I would have been.

Cheeburger Cheeburger’s theme was a little dated, and the name was clever in the Reagan era. The food was hit or miss and fairly expensive, but the portions were Elvis-sized. The service was friendly and the restaurant was clean. A mixed bag, but overall, I enjoyed my visit. I’ll be back, but for now, Eating Orlando has left the building.

2 ½ Pelvises out of 5

Cheeburger Cheeburger
504 N. Alafaya Trail
Suite 105
Orlando, FL 32828


Cheeburger Cheeburger on Urbanspoon


akeorlando said...

I used to eat at the Cheeburger Cheeburger in MetroWest, and every time it messed-up my stomach. But their burgers are damn good!

Anonymous said...

I love the cheeburger cheeburger food is great and very satisfying love the texture taste and fries and rings i ordered the butterfinger cheesecake how awesome is that flavor was great i also got the creamy jalepeno sauce for my fries and rings great taste the staff was great 5 star