Extraordinary Beef Burgers with Wine Planked Fig Salsa

Pairs well with:


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

We love pulling out the grilling planks.The aroma and taste is even better when you have soaked the plants in fruity Sutter Home Wine. The subtle smoke flavor that is created is a perfect match for the fresh hot burgers.


2 oak grilling planks (6″ X 12″ each)
1 bottle Sutter Home Zinfandel wine

1-1/4 pound ground beef chuck, preferably grass fed
1 -1/4 pound ground beef sirloin, preferably grass fed
3 tablespoons avocado oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1/2 cup grated red onion
1-1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon crushed green peppercorns
1 cup fresh champagne grapes

5 fresh California Figs, stems removed and cut in half
1 red onion cut in wedges
3 fresh jalapeno peppers, cut in half and seeded
1 lime, cut in half
3 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons avocado oil
3 tablespoons fig preserves
1 teaspoon sea salt

6 best quality artisan rolls
12 crisp lettuce leaves
6 slices ripe heirloom tomatoes
6 slices Gruyere cheese


Remove 1/4 cup wine from bottle and reserve for later. Place grilling planks in a baking dish and pour the remainder of the bottle wine over the top to cover. Weight planks down to submerge. Soak for 1 hour.

Preheat gas grill to Medium High.

Combine the beef, reserved 1/4 cup wine, oil, garlic, rosemary, onion, salt and pepper. Gently stir in the grapes. Form into 6 patties. chill until ready to grill.

Remove planks from wine. Brush the cut sides of the figs, onion, jalapeno and garlic with avocado oil. Place on the planks, cut sides down. Place on the grill and close lid. Grill for 15 minutes or until plank is smoking and fruits and vegetables are beginning to blister. Watch closely so plank does not start to burn. Remove from the heat. Let cool slightly. Crush garlic and place in bowl. Squeeze juice from lime over garlic. Stir in the avocado oil, fig preserves and salt. Whisk to combine. Coarsely chop figs and vegetables. Toss with mixture in bowl.

Brush grill grate with oil. Place the meat patties on hot grill. Cover and cook until desired doneness, about 5 minutes per side. During last few minutes of cooking, place the rolls on the side of the grill to toast lightly. Top burgers with cheese and allow to melt. Remove buns from grill. Place lettuce on bottom. Top with tomato slice. Add burger. Finish with generous spoon of Fig Salsa and replace bun top.