Visiting with Ooblies in Downtown Medford

One of the best perks of working downtown has been the lunch selection at all of the area’s food trucks. Within walking distance of the brewery we can find teriyaki chicken, breakfast burritos, artisan sandwiches, and these guys: Ooblies Waffle Sandwiches. We love their tasty and quirky selection so much, and we invited them to join our brewery-preview Permit Party last August.

From the Ooblies creator himself, Tanner, here’s a bit about how Ooblies came to be, what to expect for upcoming waffle sandwich specials, and which beverages pair best with our favorite creations.

DSC_3829_edited-2What motivated you to start a waffle sandwich food truck?

Originally, I never planned on opening up a food truck. It was a spontaneous idea that stemmed from the suggestion of a friend. I came up with the idea for waffle sandwiches in 2012 when I was in Singapore and ate a Belgium waffle that was filled like a jelly doughnut with a sweet meat paste. When I observed the street vendor injecting the waffle with the meat paste, I thought it looked like a lot of work and wondered why they didn’t just spread it over the waffle, fold it up and make a sandwich out of it. From there on the idea of waffle sandwiches stuck in the back of my head, but it wasn’t something I thought about daily or ever really focused on until a few years later when I wanted to start a business my family.

The idea to do a food truck and sell waffle sandwiches came from a conversation with a close friend about starting and running a business, and my friend happened to mention that a food-truck might be fun and maybe I could start one, but they weren’t sure what I could sell. Well, they didn’t know, but as soon as they said it, the idea of waffle sandwiches came rushing back to me and it was waffles from then on.

 

DSC_3838_edited-1What would you say are the best places to take your sandwich and eat downtown?

We always say the best place is right where your eating it, because if your eating a waffle sandwich it can’t get much better than that!  We do have other suggestions though, like right outside our food truck. Sometimes, if your lucky, the magical, secret taste-test waffle appears in that area and you may get to try something new that no one else has ever gotten to try before! When not hunting for the elusive secret taste-test waffle, we suggest enjoying your waffle at the tables outside the Craterian by the water fountains during summer.

 

Tell us about your seasonal recipes, like the Pumpkin Spice Waffle. Are there any new ideas coming up for us to look forward to?

One of the best parts of making waffle sandwiches is that the possibilities are endless. Whether it’s savory or sweet, we always enjoy coming up with new sandwiches, and try to use what is in season or what sounds fun or festive for the time of year, like our Pumpkin Spice Waffle. That was October’s special waffle, made with my own mixture of hand-ground ginger, clove, cinnamon, cardamom, lemon zest and vanilla whipped into a sweet and tiny bit spicy pumpkin cream, topped with house made caramel, crushed walnuts and fresh pears right here from our valley…. though, sometimes I just get crazy and do something really odd for the time of year, like this month’s special: the Frenchy. The Frenchy, is an explosion of summer memories in your mouth and is made with French lavender whipped maple butter on a French Toast Waffle with raspberries and blueberries…a little odd for this time of year, but hey, we are a little odd here at Ooblies anyhow!

We also have a couple other specials this month, such as our Hot Mother Clucker (with a Buttermilk fried chicken breast, cayenne chili maple glaze and half sour pickles) and The Count of Monte Cristo (a lovely sweet and salty waffle made with turkey, swiss, ham and blackberry jam). Coming up in December, we’ll do a pulled pork waffle per customer request, and possibly a peppermint crème brulee waffle sandwich.

 

DSC_3907_edited-2We’d personally pair a coffee stout with your breakfast waffle. What are some other beverage pairings you’d suggest with your waffles?

A coffee stout is an excellent choice for the Breakfast Waffle. A vanilla porter goes quite well with any dessert waffle, except maybe our Berry Delightful. For the Berry, we suggest a sparkling champagne, which is also a killer with….wait for it….our Buttermilk Fried Chicken! An IPA is a good choice for the Hot Pastrami, and if your looking for something non-alcoholic a sparkling IZZE soda will hit the spot every-time

 

How did you come up with the name Ooblies, and what does it mean?

According to Larousse Gastronomique, the ancient Greeks (1100 B.C.E. to 146 B.C.E.) made wafer-like waffles called obleios. The wafers were cooked by pouring a thick batter mixture onto one heated plate and then setting another heated plate on top of that. These wafers were not exactly the waffles you think of today, but they created the foundation for modern day waffles. We derived Ooblies (pronounced oo-blees) from obleios, and since it’s a word we created, we say Ooblies means Waffle Sandwich!

So why did we pick Ooblie’s compared to other possible names such as the illustrious Two Jerks and a Waffle, or Waffletastic? Well, three reasons: first, it was derived from the ancient Greek word, Obleios, that helped create waffles, and our family is part Greek so that’s a big point for family heritage – booyah! Second, it makes the sound “ooo,” like ” Ooo that’s good,” and our waffles tend to leave that impression on everyone who tries them. Loved it! Third…. well, you know that googly eyed looking thing people text to each other? —> 0_o We liked how if you added a little line underneath Ooblie, it looked like a smiling googly eyed dude, and that pretty much sealed the deal.

There you have it!  Thanks, Ooblies, for taking the time to answer all of our questions.  And for making us hungry.