Blackened Burgers

“The ‘Pandemic’ Wine Club Reserve, as chosen by our in-house blending team, has a significant amount of char and smokiness to it, thanks, in part, to the substantial amounts of Petit Verdot and Petit Sirah. It is also rounded out with blueberry and cherry notes. It seems like the perfect pair to a well-made grilled burger. Add the blackening spice, the sharpness of the cheddar and the smokiness of the aioli and you have a match made in heaven!”
– Harry Wetzel, Head of Operations & Family Partner

– Serves 4 –

1 lb. ground beef, 80% lean
1 lb. ground lamb
4 Tbsp. dried thyme
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. sugar
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp. cumin
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
½ tsp. nutmeg
1 cup mayonnaise
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, seeds removed
2 tsp. adobo sauce from chipotle peppers
1 lime, juiced
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ tsp. salt
Burger buns
Extra sharp cheddar

Method of Preparation:

Aioli: Several hours in advance, combine all of the aioli ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Refrigerate.

Blackening Spice: Combine all ingredients thoroughly and season both sides of each burger patty.

Burger: Prepare a charcoal grill by lighting with a charcoal chimney or lighter fluid, keeping the coals to one side of the grill. Mix the ground lamb and beef together until thoroughly incorporated. Separate the meat into four even quarters, then form into patties. Leave a small indent in the center of each patty with your thumb (this will prevent the burgers from shrinking too much). Once the coals are ready, sear the burgers directly over the coals for 4-5 minutes. Flip the burgers and sear for 2-3 minutes, then move to the side of the grill, away from the heat. Top each burger with cheese and cover the grill. Cook for an additional 4-5 minutes for medium. Remove the burgers to a plate.

Assembly: Toast the buns, either in the oven or over the coals. Spread a healthy amount of aioli on the bottom bun, then top with a burger and the toppings of your choice.

This recipe is best cooked over charcoal but can be done on a gas grill or the stovetop.