Burger Battle 2017

Written by Devon Cordell Category: Food & Drink Festivals Issue: March 2017
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Restaurants from across the Valley came together Thursday to compete in Scottsdale Culinary Festival's annual Burger Battle at Scottsdale Waterfront.

The competition was fierce, from Hopdoddy Burger Bar’s activated-charcoal sliders to Aioli Gourmet’s “Holy Aioli” burger. They were all fighting for two primo awards: the Judges’ Choice and People’s Choice trophies.

The event’s celebrity judges were Suzanne Clark, a self-described “recipe artist”; chefs Chris Neff and Eddie Matney; and award-winning freelance food, beverage and travel writer Christina Barrueta of Write On Rubee.

Asadero Cocina’s wagyu beef sliders were the hero of the night, and took home the trophy for Judges’ Choice. Asadero’s spicy burger boasted green chile, black olive cream cheese and sriracha ketchup.

An unexpected crowd favorite and winner of the People’s Choice award was Arizona Wilderness Brewing Co., with its peanut butter and jelly sliders spread with house-made peanut butter and jalapeño jelly and topped with white cheddar and bacon.

Two of last year’s winners continued to be crowd favorites: Mariposa Latin Inspired Grill, 2016’s People’s Choice winner, and Zinburger, whose Bruce Lee Burger won took the Judges’ Choice honor last year and People’s Choice in 2015.

Overall, the event was a beefy success, with hundreds of people leaving with smiles and full bellies.


 Asadero’s Chef Don Molinich (left) and his team work to prepare their wagyu beef sliders before the gates open.

Asadero’s winning wagyu beef sliders

Arizona Wilderness’ peanut butter and jelly sliders won People’s Choice.

A crowd queueing to try Relish Burger Bistro’s sliders. 

A big bite of Arizona Wilderness’ peanut butter and jelly slider.

Zinburger employees proudly showcasing their Blissful Brie Burger.  

Hopdoddy’s activated-charcoal sliders.

Photos and text by Devon Cordell