Wacko Burger & Cafe: Indo-American alliance

Jl. Drupadi No. 18, Seminyak

Wacko Burger situates itself on the calmer part of Seminyak, spilling out slightly to the sidewalk. The place is semi-outdoor, with the far end bordering itself with a patch of paddy field, which at my time of stay was vacant and therefore muddy — wrong season I guess. The decor was clearly very traditional, with pieces like rusty old windows; vintage local portraits, newspaper cut-outs, ads, and illustrations — a bold and clear move on nationalism. The wooden pillars that served as framework for the ceiling were deliberately left exposed, yet they featured surfboards, introducing hints of American culture into the picture.

The menu, on the other hand, is a carbon copy of American-diner menu sets, specializing in burgers and sandwiches. This time, hints of Indonesia were subtly added to several items in the menu, one being the incorporation of sambal bajak (a traditional chili paste made of chili, garlic, and an array of local spices) into one of their spicy burgers. In a sense, the entire restaurant symbolizes a democratic alliance between us and the western culture. One person next to me ordered chicken wings, which came in an “ayam jago” bowl. Indonesians would know that this image is the very heart and soul of local street food.

Burger: Down Under (IDR 88k, fries included)

I had gone for an Australian burger in an American-Indonesian hybrid restaurant — a bold move indeed.

It was a towering figure, boasting a medium-well 125g beef patty, fried egg, pork bacon, fried onion rings, and their very own “wacko sauce”. The patty was perfectly executed, turning out super juicy and tender. The onion rings gave into a nice crunch with every bite, the bacon was a bit tough but added saltiness into the mix, which is balanced out with the sweet notes from the beetroot. The fried egg seemed slightly out-of-the place flavorwise, but it was necessary for this one — for it won’t be reminiscent of Australia if it weren’t for the fried egg. The wacko sauce was the perfect condiment, an aioli-dijon mustard mix with good notes of sweet, tangy, and slightly spicy. It was definitely a very messy burger to down but you know what they say: if juice is not running through your arms then it’s not good enough yet.

Verdict:

Wacko Burger provides good ambience for both eating out and casual hangouts, although I have to admit their Indonesia-meets-America concept was a daring move, and it could be improved. On the food side, their burgers are good for their value, and their service is tip-top.

Written by

Junior doctor, writer, photographer, and part-time social media strategist. Receive weekly updates from me ⤵ https://sendfox.com/jonathanoei

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