Feta Stuffed Ouzo Burgers with Fontina Tomato Cheese Spread and Cool Calamata Tzatziki Sauce

Pairs well with:


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


6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons minced jarred Greek peppers, seeds removed (about 6 peppers)
3 tablespoons chopped, jarred roasted red peppers
2 pounds ground chuck
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons grated onion
2 tablespoons Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons Greek seasoning blend
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup Ouzo

Cool Calamata Tzatziki Sauce:
1 large English cucumber
8 oz. plain Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup chopped pitted calamata olives (about 15 olives)
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Fontina Tomato Cheese Spread:
6 oz. mascarpone cheese
6 oz. fontina cheese, shredded
2 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Sutter Home Zinfandel
1/4 teaspoon salt

Vegetable Oil, for brushing the grill rack
6 Kaiser rolls, split


Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high heat.

For the patties, place the feta cheese, Greek peppers and roasted red peppers into a medium bowl, mix well. Evenly divide into 6 portions, press each portion into a ball-shape; set aside. In a large bowl, place the ground chuck, garlic, onion, Worcestershire sauce, Greek seasoning, red pepper flakes, pepper and Ouzo. Handling the meat as little as possible, mix well. Divide meat mixture into 6 equal portions and form each into a patty around one of the reserved feta cheese balls, making the burger slightly larger than the rolls, and flattening the cheese ball in the center of the patty. Place on a large plate, cover with plastic wrap, refrigerate until ready to grill.

To make the cool calamata tzatziki sauce, shred the English cucumber. Place shredded cucumber into a clean kitchen towel, squeeze out water. Place cucumber into a medium bowl, add in the Greek yogurt, lemon juice, calamata olives and pepper; mix until fully combined. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

To make the fontina tomato cheese spread, place in a medium bowl the mascarpone cheese, fontina cheese, tomatoes, garlic, Zinfandel and salt, mix until fully combined. Cover and set aside until ready to use.

Brush the grill rack with oil. Place patties on the rack, cover and cook for 4 – 5 minutes per side until desired doneness is reached. During the last few minutes of cooking, place the rolls, cut side down, on the outer edge of the rack to toast lightly.

To assemble the burgers, evenly spread the cheese spread over the cut sides of the roll bottoms, top with a patty, then with the calamata tzatziki sauce. Add the roll tops and enjoy!