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Extreme eating: burgers at Oscar’s Tavern

March 26th, 2010 · 3 Comments · Center City, Oscar's Tavern, burger, cheap eats, dive bar, friends, fries

This isn’t as extreme as the time I ate a burger while I rode my bmx bike off  a cliff into a ring of fire and then a shark ate me. No I just ate a burger at Oscar’s Tavern. That’s pretty fucking extreme (extreme language!) if you are familiar with this particular Philly dive bar. Oscar’s has become a regular happy hour spot for us library folks. It’s dimly lit and has this great old school feel.  This is not the place you go to check out the latest microbrew. No, we go there for the cheap big gulp sized glass of Yeungling and the fun characters that fill the bar.

During one of our recent visits I was surprised to see an extensive burger list. Some of them even sounded kind of exotic, French burger anyone? I joked about having burger club at Oscar’s but I feared for the safety of my burger club lovelies. So I did it myself with a small group of fearless burger eaters: SouthernArchivist, MarcRecords and Slosh. I have changed the names to protect the not-so-innocent.


I kept it simple and ordered the bacon cheeseburger. I would say it was a 6 or 8 ounce patty. Cooked super well done so it was a bit dry but actually had a nice char which added something to it. The bacon was crispy and the burger was topped with tomato and raw onion. It was served on a kaiser bun, which is my least favorite kind of bread for a burger bun but it worked with this burger. It was a good quality kaiser roll.

Bacon cheeseburger

MarcRecords wins a metal for bravery, he ordered the French burger. The burger was described as being topped with baked ham, swiss cheese and a burgundy wine sauce. While I saw the ham and the cheese, I did not detect any of the burgundy wine sauce. I was strangely disappointed. I had a bite of the French burger but didn’t really get much flavor from the ham or cheese. Bummer. I would probably just stick with the plain cheeseburger or bacon cheeseburger. SouthernArchivist kept it super simple with a plain burger and Slosh got the cheeseburger and it might also have had bacon on it. Thanks you guys for playing along!

French burger

When at Oscar’s stick with the cheese fries. Super crispy and topped with Cheez Wiz. Have I mentioned my love of Cheez Wiz? Oh I haven’t. Well when you’re parents divorce at 8 and you live with your dad, you learn to love Cheez Wiz. We ate that shit on everything and it was awesome. Thanks dad! Back to the fries, we often get 1 or 3 orders of these things because after a few monster glasses of beer you need cheese fries. It’s simple mathematics, I’m sure there is an equation for it.

Cheese fries

At the end of the day would I order a burger from Oscar’s again? Probably not. Especially now that 500° just opened right down the street. I’m pretty excited about it. I will continue to visit Oscar’s to get together with my library pals, drink cheap beer and have a good time.

Oscar’s Tavern
1524 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102-2804
(215) 972-9938


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