Nothing says "summertime" like cleaning up the backyard and getting those grills fired up.
We've also gotten so used to nature's erratic patterns here in Florida that we've adapted barbecuing as a rain-or-shine activity -- it has also become a bit of sport with numerous competitions in different aspects of grilling becoming rather popular across the land.
See also: Rain Doesn't Stop Boca Burger Battle, Bite Gastrotruck Conquers Competition
For the third time, Sanborn Square Park will host the Boca Burger Battle and judging by the increasing turnouts and level of competition among the contenders, this is one event that is here to stay.
There will be 19 restaurants and food trucks competing this year in the juried competitions of "Best Grill Master" and "Best Alternative Grill Master" as well as a people's choice award of "Best Boca Burger."
Last year's judges awarded "Best Grill Master" to Bite Gastrotruck and "Best Alternative Grill Master" to 4th Generation Market. The people awarded three top Boca Burgers with Morton's Steakhouse taking first, Rebel House second and Potions in Motion third.
While most competitors are returning including last year's winners defending their titles, here's the full roster of grillers who'll be vying for bragging rights: Morton's Steakhouse, Potions in Motion, Shake Shack, 4th Generation Market, Moonshine Mollys' Country Saloon, Ruth's Chris Steak House, Boca Burger House, Red's Backwoods BBQ, 13 American Table, Cuthill's Bar & Grill, Burger Craze, Tucker Duke's Lunchbox, Salt 7, Bite Gastrotruck, Benny's on the Beach, Moran's Italian Bistro & Brick Oven, Green Spot Kitchen, and McCoy's Restaurant.
The judging panel will include notable food personalities like Jamie Frankel from Burgers by the Beach and Chef Ron Duprat from Bravo's Top Chef. With a thematic "backyard BBQ"governing the ambiance, this year will also feature a variety of food tasting stations as well as plenty of beverage choices from sponsors like Cockspur Rum, Svedka Vodka, Holy Mackerel beer, and Madria Sangria.
Looking to purchase some wine?
There will be special discounts at the new wine store although something tells us that most deals will be on Moscato, which is a variety that can't go away fast enough in our opinion.
General admission to the event is $50 and VIP tickets are $120 per person. Ticket holders are entitled to unlimited food and drink tastings with the only difference being that the VIP admission gets you in at 6 p.m. and into the IKEA-sponsored lounge area and an after party with the judges and competitors. There will be live music courtesy of Classic Rock Therapy.
3rd Annual Boca Burger Battle, A Grilling Affair! from 6 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, July 12 at Sanborn Square Park, 72 N. Federal Highway, Downtown Boca Raton. 21+ with ID, no pets allowed. For tickets call 561-338-7594 or visit bocaburgerbattle.com