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‘Burger Week’ returns to Owensboro for 4th year with more burgers and a new award

Daniel Reche (Pexels)

Owensboro’s Burger Week is back for another year with some new twists in addition to its biggest burger selection yet.

Burger Week allows area restaurants to feature a specific burger to the public for a limited time. All items are priced at an equal rate and are evaluated by a panel of judges to determine the overall winner.

Bigger, Better, and Beefier

O’Bryan’s Bar & Grill: The Double Bacon Mozzarella Cheese Stick Burger
Owensboro Burger Week (2021)
2021 Winner - O’Bryan’s Bar & Grill: The Double Bacon Mozzarella Cheese Stick Burger

This will be the fourth year for the city-wide event hosted by the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s called ‘Burger Week,’ but we actually do it over two weekends and a week, so it’s over nine days. That gives people the opportunity to try as many burgers as possible,” said Dave Kirk, with Visit Owensboro.

Kirk told WKU Public Radio that he brought the idea to the city in 2021, during the COVID-19 pandemic to help support local businesses. The event has continued to garner interest from fans, with burger sales climbing each year.

In 2023, participating businesses sold 34,549 burgers during the event, generating around $245,000 in local revenue.

“And that’s just the featured burger,” Kirk said. “People will go to a lot of these places and get the featured burger, but they will also get something else off the menu or even another burger.”

2022 Winner - Dee’s Diner: The French Toast Breakfast Melt
Owensboro Burger Week (2022)
Dee’s Diner: The French Toast Breakfast Melt

He added that during the first year, Burger Week saw 24 competing businesses. That number has nearly doubled this year, with 41 restaurants set to participate in the beefy showdown.

“Most of them are local. There are a couple of chains; we don’t deny chains, but there are very few—less than five.”

New Award

Along with some new featured burgers, this year’s event will introduce a People’s Choice Award, where fans will be able to vote online for their favorite burger.

“It’s something that the community really gets behind—both the restaurants and the consumers. The creativity that flows that week is unmeasured, and we always look forward to seeing what people come up with," Kirk said.

2023 Winner - Windy Hollow Biscuit House: Shrimp & Grits Burger
Owensboro Burger Week (2023)
Windy Hollow Biscuit House: Shrimp & Grits Burger

He added that blind taste testing is conducted each year by a distinguished panel of self-proclaimed burger experts to determine the grand champion.

“We do a double-blind judging panel where we get people from around the community, some with a culinary background and some without,” Kirk said, noting the judges don’t know where the burger is from and that the restaurants don’t know when the burger is picked up for judging.

While many burger restaurants will be participating in Burger Week, other barbeque, pizza, and Mexican cuisine establishments will also throw their hats in the ring with their own burger.

Kirk called for patience from customers as businesses prepare for an influx of orders.

“Putting out that kind of productivity over nine days is really hard for the restaurants, but they continue to come back, and they always want to know how they did as far as the scoring goes. It’s something they take great pride in.”

Burger Week returns to Owensboro March 1–9.

More information about participating restaurants and their featured burgers is available online at the Owensboro Burger Week website.