Seeing as how I've been on a mission to get out of "food blogger shape", I don't really go out for burgers anymore. While I love nothing more than taking down a hearty bacon burger, especially after a night of heavy boozing, that pile of medium rare deliciousness defeats the purpose of me going to the gym. Then again, ingesting copious amounts of calorie rich alcohol probably isn't helping me either, but you have to pick your battles, right?

With that being said, there's no event I get more excited for all year than the Denver Burger Battle. Last year was my first time going, and as long as I'm alive, and this event exists, I'll be in attendance. This year the Denver Burger Battle stepped their game up and switched venues. Instead of a scorching hot parking lot in the middle of downtown, this year we were lucky enough to have our grumbling stomachs grace the field of the Denver Broncos (Praise be to Elway). This in and of itself was an experience, but of course, the fun didn't stop there. 

I was lucky enough to get VIP access so I could cruise through the restaurants offerings before the large crowds started to pour in. This gave me a chance to quickly decide whose I liked best. Now, last year I shared with you my tasting notes on all of the burgers I tried. This year, I'm changing it up a little bit, and have created Indie Eats Denver Burger Battle Awards. So here's three completely made up awards that carry no clout whatsoever outside of my blog. 

The burger that I would love to eat on a Sunday after drinking: The Sink

Texas Onion Straw Burger – Provolone, Cheddar Cheese, Jalapenos, Crispy Onion Rings with Chipotle Mayo.  I love seeing the really unique burgers at the burger battle, but I also love the ones that I would see myself ordering on an average day. With my fondness for spicy foods, and spicy foods being a cure for hangovers, this was definitely one of my favs. The fresh Jalapenos were crisp, and spicy, and the freshness cut through the rich fried onions and melty cheese. While it didn't blow me away, this is something I would order on the regular.

 

 

The Burger that had so much going on, but was still amazing: Crave

The Wiseguy – Crispy Mozzarella, Prosciutto, Fresh Basil, Tomato and Onion Drizzled with Balsamic and Olive Oil. Ok, last year I loved the Daffy from Crave. Yes, their burgers have a ton of flavors going on, and they're messy as hell. Here's the thing though, they're pretty damn good. The flavors work together, and don't overcomplicate the burger. If they had a location closer than Castle Rock, I would probably be down there a lot more often.

 

 

 

The Burger that unexpectedly made my knees weak: Mateo's

Colorado Sirloin, Caramelized Onions, Herb Aioli, Gruyere.  I don't make it up to Boulder very often, but I can assure you that I will from here on out, if only to eat something from Mateo's again. This burger was perfectly cooked and seasoned, and had a perfect blend of flavor profiles. The sweet caramelized onions paired with the creamy aioli and the melty gruyere. It was simple, yet extremely sophisticated in it's execution.

 

 

Ok, so I know these awards don't have any official meaning to the Denver Burger Battle and it's attendees, but these two do. Here are the official winners of the day:

Judges Choice – Larkburger - Bacon Truffle Cheddar Burger. Truffle Aioli, Applewood Smoked Bacon and Tillamook Cheddar
People's Choice – Crave - The Wiseguy – Crispy Mozzarella, Prosciutto, Fresh Basil, Tomato and Onion Drizzled with Balsamic and Olive Oil

Once again the fine people at the Denver Burger Battle have accomplished pulling off the best food event in Denver. While I definitely encourage you try all the participating restaurants, I also encourage you to plan on going to the 2013 Burger Battle next year. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.