Very few food items create as much divisiveness as the simple, yet easily innovative burger. Ask anyone in this city who makes the best burger and you're bound to get a different answer nearly every time (even though there are a few fan favorites). [I submit: Indy tastemakers and their favorite local burgers 1|2|3|4|5.]
This weekend on Georgia Street at Building Tomorrow's Indy Burger Battle 2016 a clear winner of top burger will come into view, and that winner will be representing Indy in the World Food Championships in Orange Beach, Alabama, later this year.
I will be joining Liz Biro, food writer for the Indy Star and the Indianapolis Pacers' power forward, Myles Turner, as one of the guest judges on to choose the Critics' Choice winner. But don't worry, we aren't hogging all of the burgers to ourselves. Event-goers will have the opportunity to taste generous sample of each burger and then cast the vote for their favorites, which determines the People's Choice winner.
Past burgers have ranged from the out there, like The Garden Table's Spicy BBQ Lentil Sorghum Burger to classic, more simplistic, but equally delicious offerings. Last year's winners Colts Grille and Between the Bun will both be returning this year to compete again. They will be joined by Kuma's Corner, Red Lion Grog House, Flamme Burger, Teddy's Burger Joint and seven other Indy restaurants.
Tickets are $30 if you get them online before Saturday and $35 at the gate, but I would suggest getting them early, it will likely sell out. Your ticket will get you a taste of each burger, plus one free beer from Tow Yard Brewing Co. or Sun King Brewing Co. (if you're over 21, obviously).
All proceeds from the event benefit Building Tomorrow, a social-profit that has helped bring quality education to students in East Africa since 2006. They do this through building schools in these areas and they also shed light on the fact that every child has the right to an education in a quality environment.
According to their website, "As of May 2016, Building Tomorrow has opened 32 fully operational schools in rural East Africa, providing enough learning space for over 10,000 students and counting. But we’d never stop there, which is why there are nine schools currently under construction, and we expect to break ground on our 50th school by the end of 2016. We continue to push towards completing our Educate51k plan as part of the Clinton Global Initiative, a five year, $12 million plan to provide a safe, local, permanent, quality and supportive learning environment for an additional 50,980 children across Uganda."
The ability to give back to an organization as important as Building Tomorrow is reason enough to go to this event. The fact that we get to fill our faces with burgers and maybe a beer or two is just an added bonus.
Saturday, July 30, 1-4 p.m.
Georgia Street, Downtown Indianapolis