RECIPES: Recipe Details

Rate This Burger 
No votes yet

The Ultimate Patty Melt

I love the old-fashioned patty melt that you get at the diner, dripping in butter and gooey goodness. Well, I wanted to update this classic and really create the best version possible of it. The patty is composed of tender beef with pieces of applewood-smoked bacon in the patty as well. The patty is then topped with melted Emmenthal cheese and shallots sautéed in Chardonnay. It is served on toasted rye bread coated with a delicious garlic-herb butter. I guarantee you will never have a better tasting patty melt!!


1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves, minced
1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, minced
1 tablespoon fresh Italian parsley leaves, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
9 shallots, thinly sliced crosswise in rings (can substitute 2 red onions)
3 tablespoons Sutter Home Chardonnay
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
6 strips applewood-smoked bacon
2 pounds ground chuck
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack
6 slices Emmenthal cheese
12 slices rye bread


Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.

To make the garlic-herb butter: Combine the butter, garlic, tarragon, basil, and parsley in a food processor. Process until well combined. Remove the mixture to a small bowl and refrigerate until serving.

To prepare the shallots: Heat the oil in a large fire-proof skillet on the grill rack. Add the shallots and sauté for 6-8 minutes, until the shallots just begin to caramelize. Add the Sutter Home Chardonnay and cook until the liquid has evaporated. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat. Set aside.

To make the patties: Add bacon to a large fireproof non-stick skillet and cook on the grill over high heat until crispy, about 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Finely chop.

In a large bowl, combine chopped bacon, beef, salt, and pepper. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties to fit the pieces of rye bread.

Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, just until done, about 4 minutes on each side for medium-rare. During the last 2-3 minutes of grilling, place a slice of Emmenthal cheese on each patty.

As the burgers are cooking, place 2 tablespoons of the garlic herb butter in a large fireproof non-stick skillet and cook on the grill until melted. Add as many slices of rye bread as can fit and cook until toasted, about 1-2 minutes on each side. Remove the bread and repeat this procedure until all of the rye bread has been toasted, on both sides, in the garlic-herb butter.

To assemble the burgers: On a slice of rye bread, place a patty (cheese side up) and equal amounts of sautéed shallots. Top with a slice of rye bread.

Makes 6 sandwiches.