(3) OC Burgers, 1201 Airport Freeway, No. 190, Euless vs. (7) Maple and Motor, 4810 Maple Ave., Dallas
OC is the California surfer dude of local burger joints -- confident, cocky, even a little aloof. Maple and Motor gives off an Austin hipster vibe, grease-stained and stubbornly simple. Their contrasting styles made for an intriguing and oh-so-close second-round burger matchup. OC's California avocado burger was big and beautiful, with green avocado wedges peeking out over the top of two glistening charbroiled patties. The bun was sturdy, the bacon wonderfully chewy and the tomato fresh. The OC sauce added some light spice to the creamy and abundant avocados, creating a harmony of flavors. This Cali burger would be tough to beat. But after one bite at Maple and Motor, we knew the game was on. M&M's thick, 1/2-pound patties are cooked "pink," as they should be. We added pepper jack cheese, fresh grilled jalapeños, bacon and a fried egg to top it off. This was a messy masterpiece: The bacon was salty and satisfying; the jalapeños provided a nice, vinegary kick; and the yoke was on us, literally, when a spray of yellow covered our fingers after the first mouthful. But two problems emerged. The butter-brushed bun became soggy under the weight of the egg yoke and burger juices; we had a full-scale bun breach. And the meat itself lacked any distinctive seasoning -- on its own, in a plain cheeseburger, it would be very ordinary. The charbroiled OC patties, on the other hand, were bursting with flavor and provided the ultimate edge to OC in this impossibly close contest.
The winner: OC Burgers