Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Boca Burger Battle - The Results

There was no way a 5 minute rain shower was going to stop this event. It was an honor to be asked to Judge the First Annual Boca Burger Battle "A Grilling Affair."

View from the Grill Masters Judges Table

With over 20 food vendors serving up Burgers, of course, fries, wings and ice cream. Even a spice bar to make your own BBQ rubs. We could tell, with the view from the judges table, that the crowd was eager to get eating as quick as possible... So were we. After our VIP Jack Daniels cocktail, the judges were on our way to the Grill Masters Judges Table!

Let's EAT!

Thank You Jack Daniels!
The first burger arrived at 7:05pm on the dot! We were only provided #'s. No Names. A description of the burger that each contestant had provided (some just were not as descriptive as others... i.e - we get a Burger and their description simply stated "Vegan Burger." I would of loved to know what exactly made up the burger because it happened to be very good.) Either way, the overall quality of the burgers I ate was incredible. Job well done to ALL of the contenders!

The portions we were given to judge were small (we did have 20 to try!)... Either a slider, half of a burger or 1/4 slices of a burger. Which actually didn't help the judging. They should of at least provided the judge with half. How can we really get a sense of flavor or if its cooked well enough from a burger cut in a 1/4 size bite. The 1/4 bite sizes actually had the most issues. Missing onions. No bleu cheese. Take note contenders... Serve solid portions! We actually got a burger that was 100% PLAIN. The description had fried pickles, fried tomatoes, fried onion strings & a special sauce. It showed up plain! WOW.

Each contender did have to serve a Presentation Burger which was 1/3 of the point system (1/3 - taste & 1/3 overall - 15pts max - 0 to 5pts per category) and I must say, they all looked incredible but why would some contenders only use the Judges Burger as their Presentation Burger? Unless you call your burger a Slider, do not present me with a slider to judge on presentation. Some were very heavy and other looked like they were cooked in my backyard.

BBQ burgers seemed to be a theme throughout the night. Others got creative; Adding beer as a meat seasoning, blending the meat with beef & turkey sausage (my favorite) and most really going overboard with their toppings. Sometimes, to create the best burger, you just need to focus on the meat and compliment it with a few toppings. I mean, do we really need, pears on a burger? Sliced pear. What does that even do for a burger? The burgers really did a great job with the flavor combinations. I was shocked to see how well grilled eggplant & cucumbers taste on a burger. Only 1 fried egg burger. And one contender had the freshest & hottest jalapenos on the planet!!!

By the end of the night we really had a clear cut winner amongst the judges. They split the contenders in 2 categories: Best Alternative Burger & Best Conventional Burger.

Judge's pick for Best Grill Master went to:
1st place - Rebel House
       - Rebel Burger: Charm City Sauce, Pickled Tomato, Crispy Onions & Sesame Bun
2nd place - Gimme A Burger
3rd place - Big Joe's Burgers & Wings 

Judge's pick for Best Alternative Grill Master went to:
1st place - The English Tap & Beer Garden 
      - Ahi Tuna Slider: Wasabi Mayo, Seaweed Salad, Baguette Slide Bun
2nd place - 4th Generation
3rd place - Irie Spice

People's Choice for Best Boca Burger went to:
1st place - Rebel House 
2nd place - Super Dave's Diner
3rd place - Red's Backwood BBQ

Burger Photos to be updated as more information is provided to the judges on our eating order...


Winner: Best Alternative Burger
(English Tap & Beer  Garden)

Winner: Best Conventional Burger
(Rebel House)

English Tap & Beer Garden
Best Alternative Burger
Ahi Tuna Slider

Rebel House
Best Conventional Burger &
Fan Favorite Vote
"Rebel Burger"
The English Tap & Beer Garden on Urbanspoon
Rebel House on Urbanspoon