“Berry Good” Burgers with Balsamic Cranberry Sauce and Rosemary Mayonnaise

Pairs well with:


Bright and full-bodied, this Zinfandel wine is a curious contradiction in tastes.


1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries
1/2 cup cream sherry

1 cup white onion, finely chopped
1 tsp garlic powder
2 pounds ground chuck
1 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon PLUS 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1/2 cup chicken broth or stock
1/3 cup canned, whole berry cranberry sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup mayonnaise
6 slices of thinly sliced red onion
6 good quality, firm, sourdough hamburger buns,


1. Soak the dried cranberries in a small bowl with the cream sherry for 20 minutes to soften berries. Drain (discarding cream sherry) and coarsely chop berries.
2. Mix 1/2 cup of the chopped white onion, the presoaked cranberries, the garlic powder, the ground chuck, pepper, and salt in a large mixing bowl until incorporated, but with a light hand to avoid compressing the meat too much. Divide mixture into six equal portions and form patties. Set aside.
3. Prepare a medium hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover or preheat a gas grill to medium high.
4. In heavy medium skillet over medium-high heat (on the grill), melt the butter until bubbling. Add the remaining chopped white onion and 1 tablespoon of the chopped rosemary and sauté until onion softens, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth, the cranberry sauce and balsamic vinegar. Stir until sauce melts, about 2-3 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce has reduced enough to thickly coat spoon, about 10-15 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste and set aside. Mix the mayonnaise and remaining 1 teaspoon of rosemary together in a small bowl. Set aside.
5. Place patties on grill rack and cook, turning just once, about 4 minutes on each side for medium rare. In last 3 minutes of cooking patties, place the hamburger buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of rack and toast to desired crispiness.
6. To assemble burgers, spread the cut side of buns with the rosemary mayonnaise. Place a burger on each bun bottom and spread burger generously with cranberry/balsamic vinegar sauce. Top with slice of red onion and cover with bun top.