Here's the winner among all the brewery burgers in Portland, which will go on to the Final Four.
BREWERY BURGER REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP: Ecliptic (5) vs. Migration (13)
825 N Cook St., 503-265-8002, eclipticbrewing.com. 11 am-10 pm Monday-Thursday, 11 am-11 pm Friday-Saturday, 11 am-9 pm Sunday.
The monster house burger ($14 with fries) is served on a plump potato roll that crushes pleasantly in the fist. It's topped with a lot of aggressive ingredients—pancetta, red onions, melted Gruyere, and Russian dressing—which are applied gently, bringing it into perfect alignment.
My server didn't ask how you want the burger done, and mine came out medium-well, a little overcooked for my taste. It's also arguably a little salty thanks to the pancetta and Gruyere. But it's a damned good burger.
820 NE Dekum St., 503-719-6475, breakside.com. 11:30 am-10 pm Sunday-Thursday, 11:30 am-11 pm Friday-Saturday.
Breakside just opened their second brewpub, next to the New Seasons in Slabtown. Breakside's beer is in high demand, yes, but so is their food—and the burger is performing like an MVP.
It's $16 with waffle fries, but it's a hulking half-pound of Kobe-style beef from Boise's Snake River Farms that has a beautiful char on the outside. The server didn't ask how we wanted it, and instead brought it out with a perfect pink center. The patty is lathered up with Rogue Smokey Blue cheese.
WINNER: Ecliptic. Almost alone among the brewery burgers, Ecliptic was aggressive with its ingredients but still managed to highlight the beef, mixing tart and creamy Russian with the salt and richness of pancetta and Gruyere wihotut overpowering the overall burger. It's the finest brewery burger in Portland, and will face off against Stoopid Burger in the Final Four.