WOB tacos, street or otherwise, are great
UF Professor Emeritus Dr. Jon Roosenraad, and I go a long way back. At this point it appears he and I will most likely make it to the end of the line together. We have shared a ton of philosophical conversations about hypothetical issues over the years and one of my favorites is about heaven and hell.
With Roosenraad being a practicing Catholic, I'm sure you could guess his understanding of the hereafter.
Years back I discovered a great drinking song all about beer. When Jon and I are drinking with pals, often times I will stand up, raise my glass, and recite to my good friends the lyrics praising the nectar of the gods:
After which I have grown accustomed to hearing Jonny's retort "You're wrong Mike! Heaven is one big, giant beer cooler that I will be thrown into the middle of when I die."
Now here we are a zillion years later, and I see a notice on the worldwide web that the World of Beer is now serving lunch.
Now who do you think my first choice is for a lunch partner at The World of Beer?
Speaking of time flying by, it seems like only a few years ago Hooter's uprooted their 'Breasturant' from downtown and relocated to this building on SW 34th St. just off Archer Rd.
After Hooter's, a Mexican, La nopalero, restaurant opened their doors in this building and survived for a couple of years. They didn't last long. Have you seen all the Mexican lunch stops in what I call the Archer Rd. triangle?
World of Beer has done an excellent job of remodeling the inside of their new world. They have removed the bar that sat in the middle of the room, which has created a much more spacious environment. So this is a new, customer friendly lunch spot with a multitude of seating choices and a very impressive bar that runs the length of the building.
I didn't count the televisions but believe me when I say there are more TVs than you can throw an empty beer mug at.
Jon and I arrived on the early side of noon and selected a table dead center in this golden nectar emporium.
You can't help but notice all the beer taps lining the wall behind the bar. "We have 53 beers on tap, and 533 bottled beers," The bar keep proudly said as she poured Rosey his xxx xxx.
World of Beer seems to have its act together, and this lunch with my pal was looking like a good idea.
I did a little research before lunch and I saw the WOB has some interesting-sounding lunch entrees including a Flat Iron Steak Sandwich, ($12), an Artisan Sausage Board, ($15), FlatBreads, ($8), and Street Tacos. 2 tacos for $7, and 3 for $10. There is a WOB restaurant menu link below under Additional Info.
Roosenraad, being a completely serious midwesterner, ordered the Guiness Bratwurst with Guiness- infused bratwurst, sauerkraut, sautéed onions and peppers, and a house mustard on a toasted Hoagie roll.
Our server didn't do a very good job of explaining what Street Tacos were, but I liked the sound of a different kind of taco. According to the WOB menu, Street Tacos are:"Topped with freshly-made roasted tomato & corn salsa, shredded lettuce, avocado, fresh cilantro & queso fresco, served in lightly grilled tortillas":
Beer-Battered Shrimp with Sriracha Lime Aioli
Crispy Beer-Brined Chicken with House-made Ranch dressing
Ahi Tuna (raw) with Sriracha Lime Aioli
Still thinking about tacos I looked up the definition of street taco:
"So far as I can tell the only difference between a run-of-the-mill taco and a street taco is the location from whence you bought it! If you bought it from a Taco Stand or Food Truck on the Street...it's a "street taco", if you made it at home or got it in a restaurant-NOT!!! That's right. All those expensive new menu items, are basically just a sales gimmick, and a very lucrative one at that!"
Two tacos for $7 bucks was a hard deal to beat, so I ordered the shrimp and chicken tacos and a small Spring Greens and Kale Salad. Yep, that's correct GLOBers, The GLOB Master ordered a kale salad! What the kale, it was very good. In fact it was delicious. My salad also contained goat cheese, apples, sweet pickled red onions, and candied pecans tossed that were tossed with the greens in a house-made framboise vinaigrette.
You know GLOBers I am trying very hard to maintain some control over my diet. I get excited when I see things like tacos on the menu because of the small amount of carb from the thin flour tortillas, which fits well in my diet mission of proteins, veggies, and very little else.
The chicken and shrimp tacos were very good. I could taste the lime aioli, and goat cheese, and all the ingredients were fresh and cris and blended together to create a most excellent taco.
Once again you can see how the little things make a difference. I was at a Mexican lunch stop over the weekend and ordered a soft shell taco and a burrito. Unlike the WOB taco shells that were quickly toasted on the gril, the tacos came to me limp, mushy, and unappealing right out of the package.
I'm going back to the World of Beer. There are some other interesting sounding lunch entrees on the WOB menu that I must try at this SW 34th St. lunch stop.
The Pluses and Minuses of the World Of Beer
World Of Beer + indicators: For the non-craft beer drinker the menu suggest different beersto pair withr different entrees
World Of Beer - indicators: None noted. This lunch stop will become popular, and crowded come september . . .
Be the first to offer your GLOB comments, lunch photographs and opinions about the World Of Beer. Please identify your opinions with a PLUS SIGN (+) for positive comments, and a MINUS SIGN (-) for your negative comments. - THANKS!
WOB: Appearance no indicator of success
I know I am not alone in thinking "If you are going to do something, do it well." If that means focusing on one subject, so be it. As the name implies, beer is World of Beer's specialty, but the new location on 34th Street is trying its hand at many different crafts, namely cocktails and cooking. I will just say the cocktails need some work. For now, though, let's focus on one of my most-anticipated weekend mealtime experiences: brunch.
Considering the new World of Beer (WOB) is in the same plaza as brunch heavy-hitter Peach Valley Café, it is safe to assume there will be competition, what with the line at Peach Valley tending to be long due to its consistency and quality, which keep hungry patrons pacing outside and drinking complimentary coffee for over an hour on any given Sunday. Hearing about WOB's 'Beerunch' every Sunday from 11 am to 3 pm. I was hoping for déjà vu: Great menu with a variety of tantalizingly decadent and intriguing brunch options. It seemed almost too good to be true. Local owner David Menard reassured me that this WOB would rectify complaints of other locations, including serving food in general and hosting good live music at a reasonable volume, so I went into brunch with an open mind.
Let me preface this by saying that I had this WOB brunch a few weeks before the official opening, which will occur on Friday, May 27. Menard said the kitchen and bar staff were still in training, but food will be served from now until the location's official opening date. Here is a brief overview of a few items:
Chicken & Waffles Sandwich ($11): This was actually the last thing to arrive to the table, as apparently it was an oversight and there was a mix-up. The presentation was somewhat lacking. The 'Belgian beer-infused waffles' not only lacked a hint of beer taste, they didn't have much of any taste. They were nice and crispy, though. The 'beer-brined' chicken was also lacking, as well despite it seeming to be a decent cut of meat. To my dismay, even the maple syrup lacked flavor.
Blueberry Wheat French Toast ($8.50): When I read 'maple-infused brioche bread,' I envisioned thick slices of sweet, crisped brioche, but the reality was thin, soggy, and sad. Again, the syrup was lacking. Once again, not a hint of beer seemed to be present in the blueberry compote, which seemed to be premade, pairing well with the previously-frozen blueberries.
Hangover Skillet ($12.50): I was particularly excited about this one, but once I saw the size of the skillet, I knew I would not get the best bang for my buck, image at the top of this review. The eggs-cheese-veggie combo was fine, but the candied bacon not only lacked the typical sweeter taste, but it was actually unbelievably over-seasoned. On cutting into the sausage, the cheese center was a tasty surprise, but sadly the tots, like many other ingredients incorporated into brunch, seemed previously frozen. Even the Texas Toast was more like thin slices of white bread.
It's not technically on the brunch menu, but the one redeeming aspect of the brunch was the Smores Waffles ($5.50), listed in the Dessert section. However, that is purely due to ingredients, not execution. Of course adding marshmallow fluff and chocolate would create a pleasing taste sensation. I will be back to test for improvement. I certainly would love it if the food were as well-crafted as the newly-renovated space's ambiance, an inviting, open-air atmosphere with multiple sections of various seating styles, ideal space for a night out.
- Phone Number: 352-559-8775
- Address: 3265 SW 34th St.
- Urban GLOB Location: 34th Street
- Web Site: World Of Beer
- Latitude: 29.62439
- Longitude: -82.37194