BELENThe winner of the Best Green Chile Cheeseburger in Valencia County was featured on a national internet restaurant roadshow.  

Big Mike’s Burgers and More was featured on America’s Best Restaurants (ABR), which is a national media and marketing company based in Florence, Ky.., dedicated to showcasing locally-owned, independent restaurants nationwide. 

Jesse Jones | News-Bulletin photos
While America’s Best Restaurants videographer Jacob Robinson films inside Big Mike’s Burgers and More, owner Mike Montaño, center, and America’s Best Restaurants host Luis Rivera talk about the restaurant’s menu and what food Rivera will be trying for the show.

“From what I understand, they have a burger that they won in the state fair, called their taco burger,” said Luis Rivera, host of ABR. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like it the way that they explained to me so I’m excited to try it.” 

In 2022, Big Mike’s taco burger won the People’s Choice award at the New Mexico State Fair, green chile cheeseburger challenge. It is a one-quarter-pound patty in two hard-shelled taco shells. 

Rivera says he gets to travel once a month and he gets to try delicious food from around the country.  

This was his first trip to New Mexico, “and it’s been awesome.” 

Mike Montaño, owner of Big Mike’s Burgers & More, was more than happy to have the two-person crew have all access to his kitchen.    

“I think it’ll boost business; it will be more coverage out there and people will know who we are because we’re kind of tucked away over here down in Belen,” said Montaño. 

America’s Best Restaurants host, Luis Rivera talks cooking with Big Mike’s Burgers and More line cook, Patrick Logan, as Logan makes a prize-winning taco burger for a customer on Jan. 24.

Typically, restaurants get featured on the ABR when the establishment is nominated by people.  

“There were a bunch of people who nominated Big Mike’s and I mean what’s not to love about the name, gotta check out Big Mike’s,” said Rivera.  

The episode will be broadcast on ABR’s network of social media channels, its website and Big Mike’s Burgers & More’s Facebook page. 

Big Mike’s Burgers & More is located at 19388 N.M. 314, Belen, and is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Fridays; closed Saturday and Sunday. 

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Jesse Jones lives in Albuquerque with his wife and son. Jesse graduated from of the University of New Mexico twice. This spring, he graduated with a degree in multimedia journalism and, in 2006, he received a bachelor’s degree in university studies with an emphasis in photojournalism. He is a current fellow of the New Mexico Local News Fund.