Southwest Strip Burgers with Cheesy Horseradish Guacamole

Pairs well with:

Chenin Blanc

This wine is bursting with crisp, refreshing fruit flavors like apple, pear, and melon, making you want to swing your legs off a dock at sunset.


Toasted Pepitas:
1/2 cup raw shelled pepitas
2 tsp. whole cumin seeds
Cheesy Horseradish Guacamole:
6 ounces French style goat cheese
1 tsp. lime zest
1 Tbsp. jarred horseradish (not creamy variety)
2 medium garlic cloves, finely minced
2 medium Hass avocados, peeled, pitted, and coarsely chopped Patties:
2 lbs. boneless strip steaks, coarsely chopped and ground in a food processor
1 1/2 Tbsp. mild chili powder
2 tsp. kosher salt
2 Tbsp. Sutter Home Chenin Blanc wine
1/4 cup finely minced cilantro
1 Tbsp. Colavita extra virgin olive oil
vegetable oil, for brushing the grill rack
6 soft kaiser rolls, split
6 lettuce leaves
6 large tomato slices



Preheat a gas grill to medium high. To make the Toasted Pepitas, place pepitas and cumin seeds in a fire-proof non-stick skillet and cook on the grill for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until pepitas are lightly browned and begin to pop. Place in a bowl of a food processor and cool for 10 minutes. Process pepitas and cumin seeds in the food processor until finely chopped. Set aside. To make the Cheesy Horseradish Guacamole, in a large bowl combine the goat cheese, lime zest, horseradish, garlic, and avocados. Stir together while slightly mashing some of the avocados. Cover and refrigerate until serving. To make the patties, place the chopped pepita mixture in a large bowl along with the ground steaks, chili powder, salt, Chenin Blanc, cilantro, and olive oil. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties sized to fit the rolls. Brush the grill rack wiht the vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5 to 7 minutes per side for medium. During the final few minutes of grilling the patties, place the rolls cut side down on the outer edges of the grill rack to toast lightly. To assemble the burgers, on each roll bottom place a lettuce leaf, a tomato slice, a patty, and a generous amount of the guacamole. Add roll tops and serve.