Classico Balsamic Beef Burgers with Grilled Vegetables and Basil Mayo

Pairs well with:


Get cozy and get pouring. Our Merlot is the wine for long weekends and lengthy chats.

A few years ago my husband and I were traveling, and we ate at a tiny local Italian restaurant that made the most wonderful balsamic classico chicken. We’ve talked about it ever since. For this recipe I translated the basic idea of that dish into a delicious burger.


8 ounces sliced porcini mushrooms
1 cup frozen pearl onions, thawed
1-1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 clove of garlic, crushed with a press

2 pounds ground chuck
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh minced basil
1 tablespoon grated parmesan
1 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
Vegetable oil to brush on grill

1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon minced fresh basil

6 ciabatta rolls, split
6 slices smoked gouda
3 cups baby spinach leaves


Preheat a gas grill to medium-high.

Place mushrooms, onions, and tomatoes in a large bowl. In a small bowl mix together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, sea salt, and garlic. Pour over vegetables; toss to coat. Set aside to marinate.

To make the patties, place ground chuck in a large bowl. Mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, basil, parmesan, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Pour mixture over chuck and combine, handling meat as little as possible. Shape into 6 patties to fit buns.

When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5 to 7 minutes on each side for medium. Place the buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly during the last 2 minutes of grilling. Place the gouda slices on the patties during the last 1 minute of grilling.

Drain vegetables and place in a grill wok. Cook with patties on the grill with lid closed until vegetables are tender, stirring once (when patties are turned) or more if necessary to avoid burning. If vegetables reach done before patties, move to edge of grill or else remove from grill and cover to keep warm.

Make basil mayo by combining mayonnaise and basil in a small bowl.

Remove cooked patties, buns, and vegetables from grill. To assemble burgers, spread basil mayo on top halves of buns. Arrange 1/2 cup of spinach leaves on bottom half of each bun. Top with patties, grilled vegetables, and remaining bun halves.