As someone who’s spent a lifetime traveling and tasting some of the world’s best foods, I can confidently say that there’s something uniquely American about the humble burger. There’s just something about a perfectly cooked patty nestled between two soft buns that can transport you to a place of pure, unadulterated happiness. And last night, at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival‘s Burger Bash competition, I got to witness that magic firsthand.

As the crowd roared and the judges deliberated, two burger joints emerged victorious. The first, Motek Cafe, took home the People’s Choice award, a true testament to the power of community and the love for a damn good burger.

But the real star of the show was BurgerFi, a fast-casual dining concept that has been making waves in the industry for its commitment to responsibly sourced ingredients and chef-driven menus. Their BBQ Rodeo Burger, made with all-natural Angus beef and topped with charred jalapeños, pepper jack cheese, and crispy haystack onions, was deemed the Very Best Burger by the judges Robert Irvine, Phil Rosenthal, Nicole Gates, Jawan Strader, Ming Tsai, and Dave Portnoy.

And let me tell you, this burger was the real deal. The meat was juicy and flavorful, with just the right amount of char. The jalapeños added a perfect kick of heat, while the crispy onions provided a satisfying crunch. And that Memphis sweet BBQ sauce? It tied everything together in a way that left my taste buds begging for more.

But what I loved most about BurgerFi was their commitment to sustainability and transparency. They source their ingredients from responsible and ethical suppliers, and their menu boasts a range of options for all dietary needs and preferences. This is the kind of fast-casual dining we need more of – delicious, affordable, and socially conscious.

So to the folks at BurgerFi – congrats on a well-deserved win. And to the rest of you burger enthusiasts out there, go forth and taste for yourselves why this joint is quickly becoming a household name.