Burger Bash 2017 Winners: Black Tap and Le Rivage
We've got all the insider scoop and the mouthwatering photos you want.
You know we love a good burger, so it's no surprise that Burger Bash, featuring dozens of between-the-bun creations from some of the country's best chefs, was the ultimate meaty indulgence for us. This jam-packed event kicked off the second night of the New York City Wine & Food Festival (it's the 10th anniversary!), and in true festival fashion, there was no shortage of eats, drinks and Food Network stars on hand.
We did our part sampling all the savory bites up for grabs (we tried the sweet desserts, too, of course), and took in the sights and sounds as host Rachael Ray and the judges, including Iron Chef Showdown floor reporter Jaymee Sire and NSYNC's Lance Bass, mingled with partygoers and took fan-selfies galore. Like in years past, tonight's Bash was more than just a Friday night tasting; there was an element of competition involved too.
Chef Josh Capon (pictured above), a past Burger Bash champion at both the New York City Wine & Food Festival and the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, made an epic return to the contest, showcasing his now-beloved Bash Burger. While his Bash Burger was among the judges' top picks, the panel awarded their highest honor to Le Rivage, which offered a super-decadent French onion soup-inspired burger in all its cheesy glory (pictured top). The guests, however, had a different favorite; after the votes were tallied, Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer, perhaps best known for their over-the-top milkshakes, claimed the people's choice trophy this year.
Many restaurants offered half or a quarter of a burger tonight, but Shake Shack, in keeping with its beloved tradition, dished out full-size beauties to each guest. Their Mound City Shack was overflowing with STL sauce and layered with crispy, salty bacon.
Let's be honest. When it comes to burger, two patties are better than one. Pig Beach's self-titled burger proved that to be true yet again its offering, which featured not one but two layers of gooey American cheese, one blanketing each patty.
The NoMad Bar was on hand as well, and they opted for a savory-sweet pairing that was just what we needed after several salty bites. Their signature Nomad Burger, finished with special sauce, was juice and full of flavor, and it was rounded out by a cup of smooth Milk and Honey Ice Cream.
When it comes to building a burger, there aren't many rules, which means that Melt Shop's Burger Melt offering was well-received, even though it wasn't served on a bun. This burger-patty melt hybrid featured bread slices filled with beef patties, sweet onions and gluelike layers of melty cheese. To round out their golden-brown bites, the team at Melt Shop opted for golden tots, finished with a creamy sauce, pickled jalapeno and nutty Parmesan cheese for good measure.