The Cherry Best Burger!

Accolades 2018 Finalists
Pairs well with:

Cabernet Sauvignon

This rich red easily complements your homemade chicken dishes, red meats, game, and mildly seasoned pastas.


  • Patties:
  • 2 Pounds ground beef (80/20)
  • 3/4 Cup dried, pitted cherries
  • 1/2 Teaspoon granulated garlic powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt and pepper (each burger) Sweet & Smoky Cabernet Ketchup:
  • 1 Cup of ketchup
  • 3 Tablespoons adobo sauce (from a 12 ounce can of chipotle peppers)
  • 1/3 Cup plus 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 1 Teaspoon granulated onion powder
  • 1 Teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 Teaspoon ground black pepper Shallots:
  • 5 Large shallots, sliced into thin rings
  • 1 Teaspoon reserved bacon grease
  • 3 Tablespoons salted butter
  • 3 Tablespoons Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon (reserved from soaked cherries) Other Ingredients:
  • 6 Brioche hamburger buns, sliced horizontally
  • 1 1/2 Cups extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 12 Slices bacon, each slice halved
  • 1 Large bunch watercress, rinsed and dried


  • 1. Preheat your grill, that has been cleaned and the grates oiled, to medium heat 2. Place a 9 to 12-inch cast iron skillet or cast-iron flat griddle onto grill grates to get HOT! Note: make sure handle has protective covering to prevent burning yourself 3. While grill is heating, place dried cherries into a small bowl and pour in 3/4 cup of Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon 4. Keep covered with plastic and set aside until burger mixture requires further attention 5. Next, place all of the ketchup ingredients into a 1-quart oven safe saucepan 6. Make sure the handle has protective covering to prevent burning yourself 7. Combine all well, stirring occasionally for 5 to 7 minutes 8. Ketchup will turn a deeper red color 9. Remove from grill, keep covered for later 10. While ketchup is cooking, thinly slice your shallots into rings; set aside 11. Now add your bacon to the HOT cast iron pan and cook until crispy (7 to 10 minutes), turning occasionally 12. Once cooked, remove bacon, drain on paper towel and keep covered with foil 13. Reserve only 1 teaspoon of the bacon grease in the pan and discard the rest 14. Leave pan on grill and temporarily lower temperature under pan. Keep the temperature low enough to keep bacon grease from burning until needed for shallots 15. While the bacon is cooking, drain cherries well 16. Reserve the wine liquid for sauteed shallots 17. Finely chop the cherries in a small food processor, then add them to the ground beef in a large bowl 18. Add the garlic powder, salt and pepper into the bowl and combine well without over mixing the burger meat 19. Divide meat mixture into 6 evenly sized round shaped patties 20. Make a small indent with your thumb into the center of the patty to maintain evenly shaped burgers while cooking 21. Generously salt and pepper both sides of the burger 22. Place burgers onto a parchment lined tray 23. Cover with foil and keep cool in refrigerator until grill time 24. Turn the heat under the cast iron pan back up to medium heat 25. Add the butter and combine with bacon grease using a wooden spoon 26. Add the shallots to the pan and saute until soft, about 4 to 5 minutes 27. Once soft, add the 3 tablespoons of reserved Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon, stirring occasionally until liquid has completely cooked off 28. Remove pan from grill, cover with foil, and set shallots aside until burger assembly 29. Finally, place all the burgers onto the grill 30. Cook 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium temperature 31. Top each burger with 1/4 cup of the shredded cheese during the last two minutes of cooking time 32. Close lid of grill to promote melting of cheese 33. With 1 minute remaining, dip the interior side of both the top and bottom half of each bun into the pan with the cooked shallots 34. Lightly coat with the pan grease and place on grill to toast Assembly: 35. Spread bottom half of brioche bun with sweet and smoky cabernet ketchup 36. Place burger onto bun 37. Add the sauteed shallots, followed by 4 halved pieces of bacon and a small handful of watercress 38. Spread top half of brioche bun with the sweet & smoky cabernet ketchup, and top the burger 39. Be sure to pour yourself a glass of Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon to enjoy along with “The Cherry Best Burger” around!