Burger lovers provided lots of answers to the question "Who has Iowa's Best Burger?" After counting the votes, the top ten restaurants are ready to move on to the next level: the selection of Iowa's Best Burger for 2012, which will be announced the first week of May. The top 10 restaurants were announced March 19 by the Iowa Beef Industry Council and the Iowa Cattlemen's Association.
Next step is for judges to secretly visit those restaurants, try the burgers and select Iowa's Best Burger. Now in its third year, the Iowa's Best Burger contest in 2012 received over 4,250 nominations that named 212 restaurants. The Iowa Beef Industry Council and the Iowa Cattlemen's Association counted the nominations, and the results are as follows (listed in alphabetical order):
Ankeny Diner, Ankeny
Coon Bowl III, Coon Rapids
Drake Diner, Des Moines
Farmer's Kitchen, Atlantic
Ferg's Lounge & My Tighe's Restaurant, Grand Junction
PerXactly's Bar and Grill, Maquoketa
Rube's Steakhouse, Montour
Sac City Bowling Center, Sac City
The Ritz, Arnold's Park
"The Top Ten nominations are scattered throughout the state," says Elaine Utesch, a Correctionville farmer who is chairman of the Iowa Beef Industry Council. "The nominations covered restaurants in over 130 Iowa communities. That response shows that Iowans and Iowa restaurants know that burgers will always be a popular item. Restaurants love to make burgers and their customers love to eat them."
"Although we won't announce Iowa's Best Burger until the first week of May, we encourage everyone to stop at one of the Top Ten restaurants for a burger," Utesch says. "Iowans have a very special place in their heart for burgers. The burger is the all–American classic served in almost every restaurant from the local café to the finest white tablecloth establishment."
Top 10 restaurants will be visited by judges to choose Iowa's Best Burger
Nominations for the contest were made from Feb. 13 through March 16, 2012. The Top Ten restaurants were the top vote-getters when all on-line, paper and faxed ballots were counted.
The top ten restaurants will be visited by a secret panel of judges who will evaluate the nominee's hamburgers by proper temperature for serving a ground beef patty, appearance and taste. The winner will be named the first week of May as a kick-off to May Beef Month, and will receive a plaque and a media prize package that will include an on-site live radio announcement. All Top Ten restaurants will receive a certificate.
To continue to learn more about the contest, you can visit www.iabeef.org or "friend" the Iowa Beef Council Facebook page. You'll also find a map showing the locations of the Top Ten restaurants. Last year a total of 3,500 nominations for the Best Burger title were received. The winner was the Rusty Duck in Dexter, while Sac County Cattle Company of Sac City won the inaugural event in 2010.
About the Iowa Cattlemen's Association: The Iowa Cattlemen's Association represents 9,600 beef-producing families and associated companies dedicated to the future of Iowa's beef industry. ICA's mission is "Grow Iowa's beef business through advocacy, leadership and education."
About the Iowa Beef Industry Council: The Iowa Beef Industry Council is funded by the $1-per-head beef checkoff. Checkoff dollars are invested in beef promotion, consumer information, research, industry information and foreign market development, all with the purpose of strengthening beef demand.