For the last day of our Orlando vacation Simone and I took a drive to the other side of town to 2631 S Fern Creek Ave, about twenty minutes away from Disney, to Johnny's Fillin Station, which locals say has the best burgers in Orlando. Johnny's Fillin Station is by all descriptions- a dive- it looks like it may have actually been a gas station at one time, but the atmosphere only adds to the fun. Our waitress was right out of the Dukes of Hazard complete with pigtails and daisy duke short shorts. I loved this place before I even had any food. For those of you not busy checking out the waitresses, there are TVs at every turn of the head, and patio seating outdoors. Rumor has it they have some great Bikini contests outside in the summer, but sadly, I missed them on this trip.
Simone decided that she would make an entree of an appetizer and a salad. The salad was as it should be with lettuce and vegetables and dressing and not very exciting. For her appetizer choice she went with deep fried macaroni and cheese. A Healthy portion of fried triangles arrived quickly to the table, filled with the classic boxed mac and cheese with lots of extra shredded cheese folded into it. The batter was a fresh tasting beer batter and it was fried to perfection. Kids would love it- and we did also. As Simone likes to say, It was melty goodness.
The sign on the outside of the joint said they had the best burgers in Orlando, so of course I had to try a burger. I choose the half-pound BBQ burger, topped with lots of sliced ham, lots of Swiss cheese, and lots of smokey BBQ sauce with a side of lettuce and tomato. This was one of the best burgers I have ever had. The burger was cooked to a perfect medium char just as I ordered it, the ground beef was fresh and the combination of ham, Swiss and BBQ sauce was a wonderful melt in your mouth mess. It took about twelve napkins to finish this, but it was glorious to the end. A truly awesome burger both in size and flavor- and yes -the best in Orlando. Not that I needed it, but I had tater tots loaded with cheese as a side to my burger and these also brought back some great childhood comfort food memories. When I say that you can't go wrong with Tater Tots, I tell the truth, and adding cheese to them is genius.
To end the meal, we decided to try a slice of carrot cake. After we ordered, our daisy duke short shorts clad waitress went into the kitchen and quickly came back to our table to let us know it would be right out as soon as the cook could get a chance to run across the parking lot to get it. HUH ?? This was an interesting statement and one worth a conversation, so Simone asked the question. Apparently, Johnny's Fillin Station doesn't really cater to the Orlando elite, so the owner decided that to attract even more people he should build a healthy upscale restaurant and wine bar across from the Fillin Station, and call it Johnny's Other Side. This is where all the desserts get made on a daily basis so this is why our cook had to run and get our carrot cake. I must say that it was well worth the run (at least we thought so- we didn't ask the cook) The carrot cake was large moist and delicious, the cream cheese frosting was sweet and spread thick, and thankfully, there were no raisins. This was a great way to end our vacation. Johnny's Fillin Station is a dive- but a fun place with great classic diner food. I look forward to making it a regular stop when we come back to Florida and when you find yourself here, you should check it out also. 4.5 stars for the Fillin Station.