Southern Comfort Burger – Toasted in Winter Park, Fla.

Posted: March 5, 2013 in Burgers
Tags: , , , , ,

Toasted BurgerMarch 3, 2013

Convinced I will never locate a better establishment than Melt Bar & Grilled, I immediately became overwhelmed with emotions when I heard the Orlando area was opening a grilled cheese place of its own. Could there be a new glorious contender to knock the Melt off its extremely high post? I needed to find out.

A few days prior to Toasted’s grand opening, I studied some social media posts the restaurant publicized. With it being located in Winter Park and that it advertised truffle and rosemary fries, my hopes started to diminish. This sounded like a rich person’s version of a grilled cheese joint. Rich, stuck-up people eating grilled cheese? Gross.

I was wrong, yet my hopes should have diminished for other reasons. Toasted rests inside a strip mall and the inside is verrrrry small – completely not what I expected. Tables were bunched together and there were even more outside. People were standing by the wall waiting for others to get up so they could sneak in to sit down,  while some took their meals inside the yogurt place next door. And the line to order produced obstacles for patrons and the front-of-house workers as it was an extremely compact space. I understand it was Toasted’s first week of operating so maybe the lines will decrease in the future.

Not wanting to compare it to the Melt, I found it difficult not to formulate more observations. Toasted is more like a lunch spot as it does not feature adult beverages or a bar. The “Periodic Table of Cheeses” on one wall helps in the personality of the place, though, and the menu is nice and simplified. Items certainly cost less than I originally thought, but the fries are extra. So the Southern Comfort burger I decided upon was only $7, then there is the option to add $2 for salted fries or $2.50 for the truffle and rosemary variety.

Toasted MenuThankfully I grabbed a table that stood open for about one second and eventually the burger appeared. It looked dynamic, boasting a sweet barbecue sauce, bacon, cheddar and mac & cheese on an artisan bun. A rewarding burger for the price indeed, and I gobbled that baby up. The mac & cheese did not spark a lot of my taste buds, but positioning it under the patty saved the bun from getting soggy.

While eating, the owner/manager walked around and greeted customers. I decided to ask if he had ham and salami I could add to a burger, similar to the Fat City Burger at the Melt, and unfortunately they did not. I noticed sandwiches without a burger patty were being served on toasted bread, and he said I could build a burger with that bread instead. I did like the bun I devoured, but it did not call out “grilled cheese.” My new plan is to order The Big Cheese for just $5.50 on my next visit, and add the meat. It may cost a bit more, but it will give me a true opinion of Toasted.

I envision this new eatery exploding to a point where it will require a new location. Give it an eclectic feel and a bar area while not making the dining space that much bigger, and it could be Orlando’s next Graffiti Junktion. Maybe even better. Or maybe it actually could be the new Melt. I can only hope, because damn do I miss that place.

AFTERWORD (I just felt like having one of these) I somewhat agree with the name of the Southern Comfort burger due to the mac & cheese, but when I saw “Southern Comfort” I expected it to also include more items such as Cajun seasoning, short ribs or even sweet potatoes.  I am glad it did not, though.

  1. moonzblue says:

    Cheesy goodness I can look forward to! Thanks for the preview.

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