Another truly spectacular display this year where all my heros mingle with the burger eating masses while I tried to eat one of each burger competing without getting physically ill from protein overdose. Stream of consciousness: Minetta Tavern-can you say Mini-Black Label burgers?; DuMont Burger-Williamsburg's best (other than Luger's) with brilliant fried pickles; Bobby Flay's Burger Palace-wanted to hate it but loved the great sauce with micro-greens and chips on top ( Mrs. GG would claim the Cubans invented "crunchification" by putting potato sticks on their fritas) with a great caramel milkshake; Fatty Crab- a warm shot of rum with tabasco, lime juice and simple syrup to accompany the kimchee topped brisket burger; Lure-the winner of the People's Choice award (who says a fish place can't do meat?); Wildwood BBQ- bbq sauce beats ketchup any day (soon opening Bill's Burger Bar in the Meatpacking District); Old Homestead-aged ground steakburger but the truffle infused mac and cheese was my favorite side dish; Spotted Pig- British April Bloomfield masters Yankee burgers with some blue cheese (roquefort, why not British stilton?) and a duck fat fried potato wedge on the side; Wollensky's Grill-another beefsteak burger with a beefsteak tomato and beefsteak fries; Gus + Gabriel's Michael Psilakis-expected lamb but his short rib and brisket blend was great.
For dessert: Cake Man red velvet cupcakes; Kee's passion fruit bon bons, Jacques Torres chocolate chip cookies and mini-coke ice cream floats courtesy of Coca-Cola.
All of the top food bloggers were vying for interviews and photo opps: emerging internet foodie maverick and founder of AlwayshungryNY Jeff Zalaznick was there ; I saw Josh Feedbag "Mr. Cutlets" History of the Hamburger Ozersky judging, Ed "Serious Eats" Levine dieting, George "Hamburger America" Motz (whose T-Shirt I was coincidentally wearing) showing a slideshow of burger joints from around the country from his book and we exchanged stories about Bobcat Bite in Santa Fe and Hildebrandt's on L.I.; , Annie "Secrets of a Restaurant Chef" Burrell was rockin' out on the food and Adam "A Hamburger Today" Kuban was furiously taking notes like me to try to remember it all . Also someone named "Rachel Ray" showed up though I'm not sure what her connection to great food is. Afterwards I gave thanks for what I had consumed kneeling in front of a porcelain altar trying to prevent a glorious technicolor yawn.