The Chameleon. Lurking in the urban jungle, undetected, unknown, blending into the ever changing landscape, sampling everything from fine dining to reviewing take away joints, this lizard loves food possibly a little bit too much.

Hog's Breath Cafe Toowoomba (Lunch)

Overall score: 66/100 

Hog's Breath Cafe Toowoomba on Urbanspoon

Just by a happy coincidence, a very hungry Chameleon had a chance to revisit Hog's Breath Cafe in Toowoomba for the third time in his slippery slimy little life. It was lunch time, it wasn't The Chameleon's choice, but being in a group and having his meal shouted for him, The Chameleon happily crawled along to this very well known franchise at the end of Russell Street, not far from the Toowoomba CBD. In fact, it's really walking distance from Ruthven, but the location (again) is away from any 'dining precincts' as such, and The Chameleon is beginning to wonder if such a place even exists in Toowoomba.

Hog's Breath Cafe is a very popular restaurant. Let's face it, if you get your meal within the hour, you are probably doing well and in Toowoomba, the last two visits by the Chameleon resulted in lengthy waiting times. This time however, considering the size of the group that the Chameleon was with, the service was brilliant. Usually, drinks are well and truly finished before the food makes it onto the table, but upon arrival, the group entrees were ALREADY on the table. "Boss Hog Mushies" and garlic and herb bread greeted the, "we'll eat a horse each" crowd. They were OK, not bad for appetizers  although, as tasty as the mushrooms were (and deep fried 'just right'), they were a bit cold when The Chameleon was able to sample them. The mains were delivered well within what The Chameleon deems acceptable, especially for a large group as this one was.

The setting was as you would expect from Hog's Breath; raw, nostalgic, but tough and ready for whatever crowd were to visit. The furniture is rugged and the effort to mirror it's corporate image of a 'steakhouse for a football team' works in it's favour. In fact, The Chameleon could almost smell the various spilled beverages (of which 95% would of course be beer) from the previous night's festivities. The reality is, this is what you should expect here and, delightfully in some sense, it is what you get.     

The Chameleon chose the aptly named "Serious Steak Burger". Although at the time he did not know it, it was to be the most expensive burger he had ever eaten at $19.95. Framed by this thought during this reflection, The Chameleon can not but wonder how this burger ended up this expensive. Yes, it came with the very delicious curly fries (and they were very good indeed) and yes, the burger itself tasted awesome and even the chilli edge was spot on, but $19.95? Similar burgers can be had in most take-aways for $8-$12 and you could charge maybe $3 for the fries, so this means, really $11-$15 would of made sense. Hog's Breath would of course say "oh yes, but our burgers have double steak and double cheese". Unfortunately, the 'steak' was two thinly sliced pieces (very much tasty), instead of the 'piece of thick juicy tender steak' as one would imagine in a burger of this charge, and to be honest, who actually wants/notices double cheese on such a burger? Overall, The Chameleon was quite satisfied with the burger and it had that wonderfully grilled onion edge that is the signature of Hog's Breath, but would he spend the money again on the Seriously Expensive Steak Burger? Probably not, as a short walk and $11 get's you a much larger and much more unique burger at Phat Burgers
Hog's Breath Toowoomba stays true to the franchise niche and delivered positively on much of the experience, including excellent customer service this time around. The food was OK, but the prices are on the steep side for what is basically an upmarket raw-edged premium McDonald's when it comes to their burgers.
The Chameleon is mindful that in the past, a visit to a Hog's Breath in Brisbane delivered one of the finest steaks he had ever sampled, and that must be kept in mind when looking at this overall score, as the burgers probably do not truly reflect the quality that Hog's Breath is capable of on a good day. 66/100  


  1. You went to Hogs Breath and didn't eat the steak? And of course you would get a cheaper burger at Phat Burgers. They are a takeaway joint.

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