Burger Bash 2013 Ends in a People's Choice Tie; Le Rivage Wins Over Judges
The Blue Moon Burger Bash returned this year and offered something new besides burgers: a tie!
All photos by Billy Lyons
They came. They ate. But they couldn't quite make up their minds. In a first, Burger & Barrel's bash burger tied Guy Fieri's bacon mac n' cheese burger in the people's choice award category, confirmed after three separate counts, according to host Rachael Ray. While the Food Network star's popularity and ability to excite a crowd undoubtedly made him a favorite, every New York City restaurant came to play with something unique.
Competition was fierce. Commerce opted for a homemade roll to highlight chef Harold Moore's traditional burger, and if there had been a best bun contest, this team could have taken the title (though they did run out of burgers before the night was over). Newcomer Distilled--which won our Best Wings prize in Best of NYC 2013--spiced things up with poblano relish and a side of spicy garlic dill pickles. Shake Shack handed out entire cheeseburgers while others offered sliders, stepping up the size strategy to win over the crowd. Of all offerings, most unique might have been Ilili's shawarma burger with Lebaense jalapenos on a cardamom sesame bun. And Spice Market's spicy Thai short rib burger was a heavy favorite among the carnivores in attendance. Additional top finishers included Schnipper's Quality Kitchen and West Caldwell, New Jersey's Pudster's.
And while the people may not have been able to decide on one true champ, the judges had no problem: They elected Le Rivage's french onion soup burger, a last-minute entrant. Paul Denamiel's burger was served on an English muffin, and it featured stewed onions, bechamel, and emmental cheese.
Josh Capon's team looked to defend Burger & Barrel's championship. They did...sort of.
Burger and Barrel's Bash Burger, which tied for first place in the people's choice award
If there was an award for best portion size, Shake Shack would be #1.
Cast Iron featured wisco cheese whiz and Nueske bacon on their burger
The Wisco Bacon Burger
New entrant Distilled opted for poblano relish and crispy fried onions on their beef burger
The crowd ponders which burger to check out next
People play ping pong in an effort to burn off burger calories
Commerce featured a homemade roll for their traditional burger
Pudster's Original: an angus burger inside a grilled cheese
Above, Pat LaFrieda and company dish out the awards for the evening's best burgers
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