Chow Bella

Two Phoenix Restaurants Are Competing in the James Beard Burger Battle, Voting Now Open

Two Phoenix Restaurants Are Competing in the James Beard Burger Battle, Voting Now Open
Blended Burger Project
The James Beard Foundation is hosting a national contest that invites chefs from around the country to create a more sustainable burger, composed of at least 25 percent chopped mushroom in place of meat. This year, there are four Arizona restaurants in the competition: Charro Steak and Lindy's on 4th from Tuscon, and two Goodyear contestants, Eagle's Nest and Toscana's.

Eagle’s Nest has submitted the Hail Mary, a patty of portabella, button mushrooms, roasted garlic, thyme, jalapenos, bacon, and shallots mixed with ground brisket, topped with bourbon bacon jam, lettuce, house-made pickles, red onion, devil dog sauce, a slice of American cheese, and a slice of Havarti cheese on a brioche roll.

Toscana’s Restaurant has entered a pan-seared burger of 80/20 ground beef mixed with house-smoked mesquite button mushrooms and topped with grilled tomatoes, caramelized onions, shaved lettuce, fresh watercress, apple-wood bacon, aged smoked cheddar, house-made Arizona cowboy candy, and mayonnaise on a King’s Hawaiian bun.

The top five competing chefs will compete in the final Blended Burger Challenge in New York next year.

If you want to vote for a local Arizona competitor, go online and cast your vote before July 31.

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Felicia Campbell has written about food, culture, and cars for digital and print publications all over the world and is the author of The Food of Oman: Recipes and Stories from the Gateway to Arabia (Andrews McMeel, 2015). Her husband learned quickly that she’d rather get a bag of avocados than a bouquet of roses.