Charity extravaganza Philly Burger Brawl returns for a fifth year on Sunday, June 14, and it’s bigger than ever before. Organizers Rob and Maggie Wasserman (of Rouge, 500° and Parlor Suburban Square) have lined up 60 different chefs and restaurants to put forth their best patties. It’s up to you and a panel of judges to decide whose is tops.
Two things make this a must-attend fest. First, tickets that let you sample all 60 burgers and include a drink are only $35 (here; there’s also an hour-early VIP option for $100). Note that tickets won’t be sold at the door, and will go quickly. Second, all proceeds go to help advance literacy in Philadelphia schools — past years have raised $900,000 for the cause.
When you head to Xfinity Live between 3-6 PM, make sure to seek out these 15 burgers that are new to the competition.
Aldine: Chef George Sabatino has competed in the Brawl before, but not since launching his avant-garde dining room in Rittenhouse — we’ll be expecting something luxe atop his grilled meat.
Bank & Bourbon: At the impressive new restaurant in the Loews hotel, Tom Harkins serves a burger made from dry-aged beef — hopefully his green herb dressing will make a showing here.
Bareburger: Which of the many incarnations of patties at this high-end fast-casual will make the trip south?
Beast & Ale: The Beast Burger served at this Tim Spinner/Brian Sirhal tavern in Manayunk is ready to roar for the top spot.
Bridget Foy’s: Garces Group alum Paul Wachman recently took over at this South Street mainstay, so watch for something that combines comfort and elegance.
Dog and Bull: The cheddar-ale bacon burger with crispy fried onions is famous at this Croydon tavern, but any of their creations (each designed to pair with a different beer from nearby Neshaminy Creek) could be a contender.
HipCityVeg: Get ready for an upset if the meat-free Ziggy burger from Nicole Marquis’ vegan fast-casual pulls out a win.
La Peg: The house burger at Peter Woolsey’s Delaware waterfront brasserie has Parisian flair, thanks to a red wine reduction, caramelized onion marmalade and delice de bourgogne cheese.
Lo Spiedo: Charred Creekstone Farms brisket is ground into the patty at this Vetri Navy Yard spot, which only has to make a short leap across the highway to the event.
Masters Bar & Restaurant: Templetown’s new bar/study hall/comfort food haven does a house-ground burger on the regular — it’s just a matter of seeing what they pair it with.
Pacific Prime: Traveling to the city from its home at the Valley Forge Casino is this upscale steakhouse — there’s no burger on the regular menu, but you know they can handle their beef.
Tredici: No hints of the menu at Zavino’s forthcoming sibling enoteca in Midtown Village have been leaked, as of yet, so who knows what kind of burger the chef will bring?
Village Whiskey: For the first time, Jose Garces’ burger specialist will compete — whether the foie gras-topped Whiskey King will make a showing is another question entirely.
Vintage: At this Midtown Village wine bar, chef Peter Pray does a burger with Morbier cheese and tomato-bacon jam, so we can only hope he brings his French-inspired game to the competition.