In one month, more than fifty thousand votes were cast at santafe.org in The Green Chile Cheeseburger Smackdown. The contest is sponsored by the Santa Fe Convention & Visitors Bureau in partnership with the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market and the Santa Fe Restaurant Association.
Of the eighteen restaurants competing, the six finalists as determined by an online vote are as follows:
· Terra Restaurant at the Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado
· Luminaria Restaurant and Patio at Inn & Spa at Loretto
· Bert’s Burger Bowl
· Cowgirl BBQ
· Agave Lounge at Eldorado Hotel & Spa
As the finalists start honing their burgers for the final, there is a twist to the competition. In August KOB FM Morning Mayhem show host Carlos Duran will lead two live, green chile cheeseburger crawls to taste the 12 burgers that did not get nominated and choose a “Lucky #7” finalist to compete in the September 7th Green Chile Cheeseburger cook off. The crawl will be carried live on KOB 93.3 on Tuesday, August 13 from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM and Friday, August 16th from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM. The Lucky #7 winner will be announced on Carlos’ morning show on Monday, August 26th.
The 7 finalists will be judged at the Santa Fe Railyard during the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market Green Chile Harvest Festival. The esteemed judges are:
· Cheryl Jamison, Tesuque resident, James Beard Award winner, well-known cookbook author and one of the country's foremost authorities on barbecue, grilling, and smoke cooking.
· Michael Bauer, long-time food critic for the San Francisco Chronicle.
· Cathy Barber, food, travel and lifestyle editor for the Dallas Morning News.
· Kate Krader, Restaurant Editor for Food & Wine Magazine.
· Ellise Pierce, investigative journalist, new Santa Fe resident, Cowgirlchef blogger and life-long cook.
· Ginny Sohn, Publisher of the Santa Fe New Mexican newspaper.
In addition to an Overall Winner as chosen by the judge’s panel, a People’s Choice Award will be determined by popular vote with all 7 finalists providing burger bites to those buying a ticket and attending the Smackdown.
The cook-off will take place on the North end of the Railyard along Market Street at Manhattan Avenue starting at 10:30 AM on September 7th. All green chile aficionados are encouraged to get involved by taking part in the People’s Choice Award voting. Tickets to sample and vote for the People’s Choice Award burgers are $15 and can be purchased the day of the event.
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