Updated: Oct 3, 2019
Two of our local pubs, Hotel Jesmond at Jesmond and Thoroughbred Hotel at Scone are battling it out against nine other NSW finalist contenders for the title of Best Bar Burger in this year's AHA NSW Awards for Excellence.
AHA NSW CEO John Whelan said the Best Burger category was one of the most hotly contested with dozens of nominations received.
“The competition between pubs is hot and the burgers keep getting better,” he said.
“It definitely was a tough challenge for our independent judges to narrow it down to 11 finalists. Today pub chefs right across NSW are constantly mixing up their range and being creative with their burgers - long gone are the days of just a piece of meat, lettuce and tomato between two buns.
“There’s no doubt the burger is one of the most popular items on any pub’s menu – and definitely one of the most instagrammed.
“I want to congratulate all finalists and wish them all the best on the night.”
Hotel Jesmond spokesperson Daniel Ferguson said couldn't be prouder of his chef Paul Thornton who is also nominated as a finalist for Regional Chef of the Year.
"'The Jeso' Burger is perfectly balanced and not over complicated," Dan said.
"Each element has been carefully considered to work in harmony with each other. It showcases a house recipe blended burger pattie, signature house recipe burger sauce, a soft melt in your mouth milk bun, melted cheese, crisp juicy pickles all balanced with the freshness of tomato and coral lettuce.
Simplicity done well is the key to the infamous “Jeso” burger.
Likewise, Thoroughbred Hotel spokesperson Jack Allen said the team is wrapped to be be nominated for Best Burger in the AHA NSW Awards for Excellence this year, after taking out the 2018 gong for Best New/Total Redeveloped Hotel - Country.
"We are nominated as finalists for The Smoked Roughie, House hickory smoked Hunter Valley Pork Belly with maple bacon, seed mustard apple slaw and house Texas BBQ sauce on our very own milk bun fresh from our own bakery served with ale battered fries," Jack said.
"We love every aspect of this burger from the delicious Smokey sweetness of the pork belly and bacon combination- joined with the fresh creaminess of the appleslaw and topped with a juicy traditional southern BBQ sauce on the freshest of milk buns which we bake ourselves."
The finalists for Best Burger 2019 are:
Cauliflower Hotel - Waterloo
Dee Why Hotel - Dee Why
Hotel Jesmond - Jesmond
Moko Eastwood - Eastwood
Royal Hotel - Paddington
Tattersalls Hotel - Inverell
The Lakes Hotel - The Entrance
The Orchard Hotel - Chatswood
The Sheaf - Double Bay
Thoroughbred Hotel - Scone
Village Green Hotel – Grafton
The Awards will be announced at a gala event at The Star Event Centre on Tuesday, 19 November 2019.
A full list of award finalists is available at: www.ahaawardsnsw.com.au