A Dubuque restaurant has made it into the Iowa Beef Industry Council and Iowa Cattlemen’s Association top ten restaurants for burgers in Iowa for 2023.

Credit: Iowa Beef Industry Council
Credit: Iowa Beef Industry Council

I'm happy to say that Foodie Garage Eatery in Dubuque has officially made the top 10 for burgers in the state. I'm also as equally satisfied to say they definitely deserve the honor (and BTW try their Reuben, too).

Credit: Foodie Garage Eatery
Credit: Foodie Garage Eatery

According to a press release from the Iowa Beef Council, "Iowa’s Best Burger Contest" is a two-phase competition. The first phase is based on votes from the public with the 10 restaurants with the most votes being placed in the “Top 10.” From there, three anonymous judges will visit each of the restaurants, scoring the burger patties based on taste, doneness, and presentation.

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Last year’s winner was the “Smashburger” from the Flying Elbow in Marshalltown, seen below.

Credit- IOWA BEEF INDUSTRY COUNCIL Smashburger from the The Flying Elbow
Credit- Iowa Beef Council
Smashburger from the The Flying Elbow

The top ten nominees for the contest this year include:

Follow those links, and plan your trip, to get your hands on the best burgers in Iowa for 2023!

hamburger with fries
Credit: nitrub

To qualify, the burger must be a 100% real beef patty served on a bun or bread product. Burgers may include any combination of condiments, sauces, cheese or toppings.

“In total, we collected 6,414 votes for 509 Iowa restaurants. This year’s Top Ten restaurants are award-winning worthy, but are only a few of the many restaurants in Iowa that do an outstanding job of promoting and serving our beef products to their customers on behalf of Iowa’s beef farmers.”

-Kylie Peterson, Director of Marketing for the Iowa Beef Industry Council

Five of the Top Ten restaurants are new qualifiers, including Ben’s Burgers, Burger & Company, Flight Bar & Grille, Jeronimo’s Bar & Grill, and Parlor on Main.

The final phase in the quest for the 2023 Iowa’s Best Burger now begins. All Top Ten restaurants will be visited by a panel of anonymous judges who will evaluate the burgers based on taste, appearance, and proper doneness. The judges’ scores and comments will be figured with the winner announced on May 1st. This announcement will kick off May Beef Month in Iowa.

Past winners include:

  • 2021 – Bambino’s; Ossian
  • 2020 – Twisted Tail Steakhouse & Saloon;  BeeBeeTown
  • 2019 – Wood Iron Grille; Oskaloosa
  • 2018 - Café Beaudelaire; Ames
  • 2017 – The Smokin’ Hereford BBQ; Storm Lake
  • 2016 – The Chuckwagon Restaurant; Adair
  • 2015 – The Cider House; Fairfield
  • 2014 – Brick City Grill; Ames
  • 2013 – 61 Chop House Grille; Mediapolis
  • 2012 – Coon Bowl III; Coon Rapids
  • 2011 – Rusty Duck; Dexter
  • 2010 – Sac County Cattle Company; Sac City
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