Basil-Smoked Burgers with Zinfandel

Phillys Basil-Smoked Burgers with Zinfandel

Phillys Basil-Smoked Burgers with Zinfandel

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Philadelphia, PAPhilly's Basil-Smoked Burgers: Makes 6 - Philadelphia's burger scene is legendary, but this basil-smoked burger recipe, infused with the essence of zinfandel and grilled to perfection, stands out as a unique and flavorful creation.

Philadelphia's Signature Basil-Smoked Burgers: A Culinary Delight


  • Pesto Mayonnaise:
    • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
    • 2 tablespoons prepared basil pesto
  • Patties:
    • 2 pounds ground sirloin
    • ¼ cup Zinfandel wine
    • ¼ cup minced fresh basil
    • ¼ cup minced red onion
    • ¼ cup fresh Italian bread crumbs
    • 8 sun-dried tomatoes (packed in olive oil), finely chopped
    • 2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • Additional:
    • Vegetable oil, for grilling
    • 8 large fresh basil sprigs, moistened with water
    • 6 large sandwich rolls, split and seeded
    • 6 slices Monterey Jack cheese
    • 6 red leaf lettuce leaves
    • 6 (¼-inch-thick) tomato slices
    • 6 paper-thin red onion slices, separated into rings
    • 6 fresh basil sprigs, for garnish


  1. Prepare the grill: Light a charcoal grill for medium-high heat or preheat a gas grill.

  2. Make the pesto mayonnaise: Combine mayonnaise and pesto in a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate.

  3. Mix the patties: Gently combine sirloin, zinfandel, basil, onion, bread crumbs, sun-dried tomatoes, and garlic salt in a large bowl. Avoid overmixing to maintain tender patties. Divide the mixture into six equal portions and form them into patties.

  4. Grill the burgers: Brush the grill rack with oil. Toss the moistened basil sprigs onto the coals (for charcoal grills). Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook for 5-7 minutes per side for medium doneness. In the last few minutes, toast the buns cut-side down on the grill's outer edges.

  5. Melt the cheese: Top each patty with a slice of Monterey Jack cheese during the final minute of cooking.

  6. Assemble and serve: Spread pesto mayonnaise on the buns. Layer each bottom bun with lettuce, a patty, tomato, onion, and a basil sprig. Top with the other bun half and enjoy!

Why this recipe stands out:

This recipe elevates the classic burger with a few key twists. The addition of Zinfandel wine adds depth and complexity to the flavor profile, while the basil-smoked element imparts a subtle smokiness. The pesto mayonnaise adds a burst of freshness, and the Monterey Jack cheese melts into a gooey, satisfying layer.

Whether you're grilling for a crowd or simply treating yourself, these Philly basil-smoked burgers are sure to impress. They're a testament to the city's vibrant culinary scene and its love for innovative takes on classic dishes.

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