Smokin' Hereford BBQ

L - R: Jonathan Borjas, manager, Ileck Thammathai, kitchen supervisor, Natalie Schumann, front-of-house manager. 

2017 Iowa's Best Burger Winner

Smokin' Hereford BBQ

The 2017 Iowa's Best Burger has been named at Smokin' Hereford BBQ in Storm Lake, Iowa! 

The restaurant serves The Hereford Burger which is 8 ounces of hand-pattied Hereford beef dressed with their house seasoning, made to order. The burger is cooked over a flame grill and is served with a choice of one side and corn bread. The burger is served with lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle on the side, and served on a toasted bun.

Read the complete news release here >>>

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The Iowa Beef Industry Council (IBIC) and the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association (ICA) are proud to announce the 8th annual Iowa’s Best Burger Contest. Nominations will be taken from Monday, February 13 to Monday, March 13, 2017.

Anyone may nominate a hamburger from an Iowa restaurant. To be eligible for the contest the hamburger must meet the following guidelines:

  1. To qualify as a hamburger, the burger must be 100% beef although other ingredients may be added to the patty (such as spices, vegetables, etc.)
  2. All burgers must be composed of a formed ground beef patty/patties served on a bun or other bread product (such as biscuits, focaccia or tortillas). Burgers may include any combination of condiments (such as ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard), sauces (such as barbeque or hot sauce), cheeses and toppings (such as bacon, onions, tomatoes and lettuce). Every component of the burger must be placed between the bun or bread pieces, or served open-faced on a bread product.

Official Rules

  1. Entries will be accepted online, by text, or mail between February 13, 2017 and March 13, 2017.  All nominations must be received in our office before 5 p.m. on Monday, March 13, 2017.
    • To enter online:  Log onto  Click on the Iowa’s Best Burger icon. Follow the on-screen directions to submit your nomination. 
    • To enter by U.S. postal mail:  Complete the “Iowa’s Best Burger Contest” nomination form available at Mail completed form to: Iowa Beef Industry Council, Iowa’s Best Burger Contest, PO Box 451, Ames, IA 50010. All paper nomination forms must be received in our office on or before 5 p.m. on Monday, March 13, 2017 to be considered.  Nomination forms received after that time will not be counted.
    • To enter by text:  Text BEEF to the number 313131 to cast your nomination.  An immediate reply text will be sent directing you to an online nomination form. 
  2. Burgers must be available on the nominated restaurant’s regular menu.
  3. Restaurant must be open for business by the end of the nomination period – March 13, 2017. 
  4. A restaurant may only win Iowa’s Best Burger Contest one time.
  5. The Sponsors (IBIC and ICA) retain the discretion to make all decisions regarding the interpretation of these Official Rules.  All decisions of the Sponsors are final and discretionary.

To follow Iowa’s Best Burger Contest, LIKE the Iowa Beef Council on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.  You are encouraged to post a photo of your favorite burger on social media using #IABestBurger.

Selection of Finalists

Ten (10) burgers will be selected as finalists from throughout the state based on the number of nominations each restaurant receives. 

  • All burgers nominated from a single restaurant will be included in that restaurant’s final nomination total.
  • Restaurants who receive nominations for multiple locations will be counted per individual location not as a total.  

Judging Criteria

Selection of the 2016 Iowa’s Best Burger will be conducted by an anonymous judging panel. Decision of the judges is final.

The following guidelines will be used in judging:

  • Taste – 50%
  • Appearance and Presentation – 30%
  • Proper cooking temperature / degree of doneness – 10%
    • Medium doneness, internal temperature reaches 160° F. 
  • Overall – 10%

Past Winners

2016's Winner was the Chuckwagon Restaurant in Adair!

Visit the past year's contest results