South Beach Wine And Food Festival 2009 Burger Bash

Right before entering the hallowed tent at the Burger Bash, I was handed a menu/program with all of the participants listed as well as any sides they might be serving & wine suggestions. This also included a voting chip to be used for the People’s Choice Award. I, of course lose it before we even get into the tent. Why didn’t I go back outside and go get another one? Once I got a whiff of that seared meat that lost chip was the least of my worries.

(click to enlarge)

We decided to take the amusement park technique and start at the back of the tent and work our way to the front. My wife Marcela and my friend Yislin were here with me. We had a plan of attack to take pictures of every Burger and then try them. That plan went out the window as the lines got longer.

Near the back left of the tent was Good Stuff Eatery which was actually what I was looking forward to trying most. Their Coletti’s Smokehouse Burger was great, it was juicy and their marshmallow shake was great.

Next up was Kobe Club, the Burger was good but the Shoestring Truffle Parmesan Idaho Fries (as good as they sound) were a little overwhelming flavor wise.

Kobe Club “Bash Burger” w/ Parmesan Fries

At this point, I discover the Coca Cola stand serving ice cold 8 oz. bottles. Honestly, what else could I ask for? I’m right near Shake Shack which I’ve heard so many good things about but I didn’t think much of it once I tried it (won’t stop me from trying it in New York though and soon in Miami Beach).

Shake Shack Half Stack w/ Yukon Gold Fries

I spot the SW Steakhouse Wynn station and go for it. It’s served on a griddled Muffin with a side of Potato Fritters and some Garlic Ketchup. Not too shabby. I really like the Muffin and Fritters. The garlic ketchup? Thanks but I’ll stick with Heinz.

SW Steakhouse Wynn Las Vegas’ Ground Prime Sirloin Burger w/ Potato Fritters & Garlic Ketchup

Yislin goes to Rouge and comes back with an extra Medium Rare Burger, not my cup of tea or hers for that matter. I try it and although it’s not bad, I need my meat just a little more on the cooked side (liked their mac n cheese though).

Rouge’s Rouge Burger

The gals head out and are gone for what seems like forever but return with a sampling of Michy’s, Bistro One (An honorable mention for Bistro One’s side of Spiced Tostones, which were ridiculously good), Morimoto and Every Day with Rachael Ray (Don’t Kiss Me Garlic Burger). Of the four, Michy’s was a standout with Morimoto’s a close second. They mention he wasn’t the most personable dude in the world.

Michy’s Steak Burger

Bistro One’s Chipotle BBQ Empanada Burger

Morimoto’s Saga Wagyu Burger

Rachael Ray’s Contest Winner: Don’t Kiss Me Garlic Burger

At this point we decide we’re better off moving around as we’ve pretty much tasted everything on this end. The ladies decide to go get some wine from the Vibrant Rioja stand. While I’m waiting around I notice a mini mob nearing me. It turns out Guy Fieri is walking around and being followed by some folks. Yislin decides she should go try Katie Lee Joel’s Logan County Hamburger.

Ubuntu’s Vegan “Boudin Noir” and Andrew Garrison Shotts’s Holy Mole Burger

This brings us up to the ridiculous line for Bobby’s Burger Shack. While waiting in line, Yislin decides to check out Ubuntu’s Vegan “Boudin Noir” and Andrew Garrison Shotts’s Holy Mole Burger. The Logan County Hamburger (which was a Patty Melt) tasted better than those 2. Ubuntu’s tasted like a bad cookie and Andrew Garrison Shotts’s Holy Mole tasted almost like a bad cookie (We felt the same way).

Bobby’s Burger Palace’s Bobby Blue Crunchified Burger

We finally get to the front of the line and figure out why the hold up. Bobby Flay is posing for pictures with everyone. Hmmm….nice of him or was he trying to garner everyone’s vote? We liked the burger, it had some nice flavor and the crushed Potato Chips were a nice touch.



The gals descend on the 2 dessert places, Driscoll’s & Jaxson’s.  I tried both of them and was not blown away by either. Yislin hits up the Love Food Cafe for their Cheddar Jalapeño Burger. I liked the burger itself but I could have done without the Fresh Salsa.

Love Food Cafe’s Cheddar Jalapeno Burger

While sitting discussing which is the best burger, George Duran of Ham On The Street fame walks by. Marcela has her picture taken with him. Cool dude.

Marcela and George Duran (who she loves)

We also had tried at some point Michael’s Genuine Bacon Cheeseburger and Pier Sixty Six Burger and both were winners in my book. We decide (well I don’t actually have a vote, remember I lost my chip) that Good Stuff Eatery’s Coletti’s Smokehouse was the best burger. We head over so that they can cast their vote and Spike Meldelsohn is walking around right in front of his stand trying to convince anyone within earshot to vote for him.

The winner for the People’s Choice, Judge’s Choice and Allen Brothers Golden Grill awards is Good Stuff Eatery.

Clean sweep and well deserved, it was definitely the best burger we tried. After the presentation of the awards, he poses on stage for awhile. Just as I’m about to leave I spot Hosea from Top Chef Season 5. I wish him luck on next week’s finale (he eventually won Top Chef). As we’re walking out I mention to Marcela that we’re about to walk over where I think I lost my chip and would you believe it? She found it. Luckily, Spike didn’t need my vote tonight.

Comments (4):

  1. Miamiadguy

    February 20, 2009 at 3:36 PM

    We are soooo there with you next year!!

  2. ChadC

    February 20, 2009 at 5:32 PM

    I just had a burgasam….

  3. Ceasetodream

    February 20, 2009 at 9:52 PM

    Sounds stressful, like the Calle Ocho of hamburger sampling…I probably would’ve puked on somebody.