Round one comes to a close with two flavorful matches that decided the last two to advance to the tournament's "Elite Meat Eight."
The Lake Tavern v. High Pointe Restaurant & Tavern
On the Trumbull side of the bracket, The Lake took on The Pointe. Two perennial favorites were ready to clash at All American Cards & Comics, in Warren, for a trip to round 2.
The Lake Tavern brought a fresh ground beef patty cooked to perfection. It was topped with sautéed onions caramelized in brown sugar, Swiss cheese and crispy bacon.
High Pointe countered with their namesake burger, the High Pointe. This was two half pound hamburger patties topped with hot peppers, pepper jack cheese, fresh lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles on a gourmet bun, with a side of their signature chain smoker sauce.
This was a true slug fest, with burger judges Greg Bartholomew, Josh Nativio and Matt Miller going back and forth, taking bite after bite before rendering a decision. They deliberated these tasty cheeseburgers to the last savory bite. All 3 judges were impressed by The Lake Tavern's entry, citing the deliciousness of the brown sugar caramelized onions, but ultimately, the flavors of the High Pointe burger won over 2 of the judges.
Check out the video HERE.
Magic Tree Pub & Eatery v. Mojo's Pub
The last 1st round match on the Mahoning side was decided at I Heart Radio with The Wolf's Fast Freddie hosting. The 2016 Meat 16 champ, Magic Tree Pub & Eatery stacked up their entry against the one from Mojo's Pub.
Mojo's put together a burger they call The Ragin' Cajun Blackened Burger. It's a tasty, 8 oz. burger topped with pepper jack cheese, tangy pulled pork, 2 crispy onion rings with a Cajun Alfredo sauce served on a fresh bun.
As delicious as the Mojo's entry was, Magic Tree's Chef Reggie came to play. The Yum Yum Belly Burger is an 8 oz. Premium Pastured Meats grass fed beef patty, Muenster cheese, crispy Asian braised pork belly with a hoisin glaze, wakame seaweed salad, house-made yum yum sauce, crunchy sesame wonton strips, Gochujang on a butter toasted brioche bun.
Burger judges, Matt Tranovich, Tom Bray and Matt Borza rewarded Magic Tree's effort with a unanimous 3 - 0 decision.
Watch the video HERE.