We love to eat. ALOT. Sure, we like a healthy, earthy salad just as much as the next guy, but some of our favorite dishes are those that speak to our inner “fat kid.” You know the ones I’m talking about…rich, decadent, over-the-top. Here are some of our favorite indulgent dishes from around Jax.
The Dish: Wonut
The Restaurant: Restaurant Orsay (3630 Park Street)
Part of town: Avondale
How does one describe a wonut? There really aren’t words. Wonuts arrived on the food scene a few years ago in Chicago and we rejoiced when we found them by accident on the dessert menu at Orsay. Wonuts marry the best qualities of a donut and a waffle to create a little bite of heaven. Orsay changes the flavors of the wonuts daily so it’s always a unique treat.
The Dish: Ice Cream Sampler (10 scoops)
The Restaurant: [CLOSED] A&J’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream (469 Atlantic Blvd.)
Part of Town: Atlantic Beach
A and J’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream offers up 10 flavors of ice cream daily. Each one is churned up in a 1920’s barrel ice cream maker that was still churned by horse prior to landing at A&J’s! Enjoy flavors from Thai Orange to Chocolate Cheesecake to Sour Cream Walnut Spice. Can’t choose just one flavor? That’s where the 10 flavor sampler comes in.
The Dish: Monster Burger
The Restaurant: Blue Boy Sandwich Shop
Part of Town: Locations on the Northside, Arlington, and Downtown
If you’re going to try the Monster Burger at Blue Boy Sandwich Shop, you might as well take the Monster Burger Challenge. The Monster Burger is a two pound burger patty on Blue Boy’s baked fresh daily bun, with toppings and a side of fries. The burger is the size of a dinner plate. This dish could literally feed a family of four. Or you could order it for yourself and try to finish it in 30 minutes. If you succeed, you won’t get your food for free, but you will get your picture on the wall and a t-shirt declaring your greatness of conquering the Monster Burger.
The Dish: Cinnamon Roll
The Restaurant: Sweet Theory (1243 King Street)
Part of Town: Riverside
Despite the fact that Sweet Theory uses no dairy, soy, eggs, or peanuts in their bakery, their Cinnamon Roll is the most gourmet cinnamon roll in Jax. It will ruin you for all others. It’s huge and heavy, but not the least bit dense. It is airy and sweet and cinnamon-y without being overwhelmingly rich. Sweet Theory’s Cinnamon Roll is the most perfect cinnamon roll we’ve ever had.
The Dish: Daddy of the Mac Melt
Restaurant: The Happy Grilled Cheese
Part of Town: Wherever their wheels take them, regularly on Saturday mornings at Academy Sports on Atlantic Blvd.
This is no ordinary grilled cheese. The Daddy of the Mac Melt is loaded up with American, Cheddar, Mac n cheese, pulled pork, and grilled onions. Every bite is a party in your mouth. They don’t call this the daddy of the mac for nothing.
The Dish: Cheddar Tomato Pie
Restaurant: Pie Heaven (1980 Mayport Road)
Part of Town: Mayport
Cheddar Tomato Pie comes in an individual size pie. Imagine a from-scratch version of Red Lobster’s cheddar bay biscuits as a thick pie crust, with fresh tomato and basil hiding inside. This has the flavor of the best tomato basil soup you’ve ever had, but in pie form. I don’t know how the folks at Pie Heaven came up with it, but their Cheddar Tomato Pie is a stroke of genius.
The Dish: Oreo Funnel Fries
Restaurant: Island Dream Food Truck
Part of Town: Wherever their wheels take them!
Love funnel cake? You’ll love funnel fries! They’re like funnel cake but easier to eat. What’s better than funnel fries? Funnel fries covered in Oreos and powdered sugar.
The Dish: Croissant French Toast
The Restaurant: Metro Diner
Part of Town: 7 locations across Jax. Find a location at www.metrodiner.com.
If the name didn’t accurately explain what is happening in this culinary creation, at Metro Diner they take four pieces of buttery, flaky croissant, batter it like French toast, and grill it to crispy perfection. It is topped with – what else? – powdered sugar. This is the ultimate fat kid food move: taking something that is bad for you and using it as an ingredient in something even more decadent and bad for you.
The Dish: German Poutine Haus Cut Fries
The Restaurant: German Schnitzel Haus (13475 Atlantic Blvd.)
Part of Town: East Arlington
This German spin on a perennial favorite is the ultimate indulgence. Haus cut fries, pork braten, jager gravy quark cheese, eggs, and bacon. Everything is better with bacon! It’s “slap ya momma good!”
The Dish: Ramen Chicken
The Restaurant: Blue Bamboo (3820 Southside Blvd.)
Part of Town: Southside
Chef Dennis Chan’s Blue Bamboo serves up this treat fit for a fat kid. Chicken around the size of a nugget is placed at the end of a skewer, wrapped in ramen noodles then fried to create what we’ve always described as the best chicken nugget you’ll ever eat.
The Dish: Colombian-style Steak Quesadilla and Burgers
The Restaurant: Shack Maui (13799-1 Beach Blvd.)
Part of Town: East Arlington
Created by UNF student from Colombia, Shack Maui is one of Jacksonville’s first after-hours restaurants. They serve of Colombian-style quesadillas and burgers covered in crushed potato chips along with a fantastic pineapple sauce made in-house. Next time you’re craving something different late at night, a Colombian-style quesadilla from Shack Maui is what you should indulge in.
The Dish: Bruschetta of your choice
The Restaurant: The French Pantry (6301 Powers Ave.)
Part of Town: Southside
The French Pantry is known for its amazing breads, which are served by restaurants all over Jax. Their bruschetta are covered with all sorts of cheeses, meats, and other deliciousness and are the reason folks will stand in line for nearly an hour in the Florida heat to do lunch at this long-time Jax hot spot.
The Dish: Footlong Hand-dipped Corndog
The Restaurant: Derby on Park (1068 Park St.)
Part of Town: Riverside/Five Points
Derby on Park’s footlong hand dipped corndog is an item we have struggled to photograph. It’s not pretty. It’s not on a stick. It is a giant hotdog inside unevenly battered cornbread, due to the handmade nature of the dish. Frankly, it is a bit of an intimidating, phallic-looking food. But if you give it a shot and take a bite, you’ll know you’ve struck gold. This corndog is the richest tasting corndog around. There’s a sweetness to the corn breading and the whole dish is fatty. You can nearly feel your cholesterol climbing with each decadent bite. You can’t possibly finish it. Nothing calls your inner fat kid like gourmet fair food.
The Dish: Beer Cheese Soup
The Restaurant: European Street Cafe
Part of Town: Locations in Riverside, San Marco, Jax Beach and Arlington. Find a location at www.europeanstreet.com
Thick, rich and over the top cheesy! European Street’s beer cheese soup has set the standard for beer cheese soup in Jacksonville for well over a decade. If you’re a fan of beer cheese soup this is the spot to for it. Bonus points for using it as a dip for the wavy potato chips that come with your sandwich!