Winner: Holeman & Finch Cheeseburger
Restaurant: Holeman & Finch, Atlanta
Sandwich Creator: Chef Linton Hopkins
Inspiration: “Following chemotherapy and radiation, chef Hopkins lost his taste for a number of foods, but never for a cheeseburger. He wanted to create something honest, something that’s always been there for him—a comfort food, a memory food.”
Key Ingredients: Two griddled beef patties, American cheese, red onion, house-made pickles, fresh baked pan de mie bun, and from-scratch ketchup and mustard.
Food Cost: $4.62
What the Judges Said: We know what a lot of you are thinking: A cheeseburger with two patties, some onion and a pickle wins? Damn right. Sometimes you just don’t mess with a perfect thing, and a cheeseburger is one of life’s great joys. Hopkins gets it so right here, particularly the perfectly seasoned patty that is loosely formed. The H & F Burger is like crack, and we’re addicted. With that said, as you can see from the list of honorable mentions, creativity does have its rewards.
• Double Whammy: Club Level Grill, Richmond, VA
• Pig Face Burger: Keg & Kitchen, Westmont, NJ
• Hot Mess: Mel’s Burger Bar, New York City
• The Ultimate Cure: Red Heat Tavern, Wilmington, MA
• Carolina Chili Burger: Topher’s, Hattiesburg, MS