Opa!

A Burger Celebration.

photo © M. J. Wickham

In 2006, I was a contestant in the Sutter Home Build a Better Burger cook-0ff held in Napa, California over a sunny September weekend.  I was one of ten contestants, five competing in the Beef category and five in the Alternative category (chicken, pork or other non-beef proteins).

In countdown to this year’s Build a Better Burger contest, Sutter Home is celebrating with a ’100 Burgers in 100 Days’ promotion on their web site. Today (Day 84) my Opa! Burgers are featured and I can’t help but to relive every moment of that fun filled weekend.

I competed in the Alternative category with my Opa! lamb burgers which had a kalamata olive & feta cheese spread, roasted red pepper mayo, sliced sopressata, tomato slices, baby spinach, and a patty made of ground lamb, chopped garlic and dried porcini mushrooms reconstituted in Sutter Home red wine.  The competition was stiff, and while I didn’t really think I had a shot, I was certainly hopeful that I could place.  That was until the Food Network film crew person put microphones onto each and every one of the other nine competitors and then looked at me and said ”she doesn’t need a mic.” 

Well if that doesn’t take the pressure off, I don’t know what would.  I figured he knew something I didn’t – that I wasn’t a contender.  Given that, I decided I’d just have some fun, make my little burgers and enjoy the day.  I mean Sutter Home had already treated Mr. Darcy and me to a lovely weekend in Napa and the whole event was meticulously well run (and coming from a corporate event planner, that’s huge compliment).  Could I really complain?

So it was to my great surprise that I ended up placing first in the Alternative category, bringing home not only a nice cash prize, but also that fantastic burger chef statue that now graces my kitchen.

photo © M. J. Wickham

I just love that burger chef statue!  And that is a microphone you see on my apron.  The audio guy “found” one for me right before we took the stage.

The call for entries for this year’s Sutter Home Build a Better Burger contest closes soon.  Do you have a tasty burger recipe everyone raves about?  Have you thought about entering?  You should!  This is one recipe contest that is completely worth shooting for.  I only have one recipe in so far, but am working on a few more ideas I hope to submit before the entry period closes.  Hmm, I think I know what we’re having for dinner tonight….

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One Response to Opa!

  1. Teri says:

    Love that Burger Guy trophy !!!!!

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