In an amazing display of overconfidence and disregard for my physical well-being, I took on The North Star’s Man Vs Food challenge last week.
I’m stupid, but I’m not suicidal, so I didn’t go for the Dead Budgie Hot Wings made with the terrifyingly named Naga Ghost Chilli (which is used to make stun grenades. No, really.). I also avoided the “Ever So Slightly Big” Scotch Club Sandwich – an entire loaf of bread stuffed with so many fillings that it constantly teeters on the brink of collapsing in on itself to form a black hole.
I chose what I thought would be easy pickings – the dubiously titled Fun in a Bun. After all, it’s “only” a 45oz burger, topped with onion rings, cheese and crispy bacon. Oh, and it comes with chips too, in case you were still feeling a bit peckish.
I have no idea why I thought I could eat the equivalent of a dozen quarter-pounders. Was it a complete inability to visualise imperial measurements? A man-crush on Adam Richman? Or just good old-fashioned idiotic male pride? Probably a combination of all of the above.
According to one of the extremely lovely staff at the North Star, about eight people have finished the beef behemoth in about 6 months. No word on how many of them have secured a place in the X-Men thanks to their mutant power of gluttony.
Of course, I couldn’t take on a challenge of this magnitude without a wingman. The fearless Pete the Greek played the Goose to my Maverick (sorry Pete, if you wanna be Maverick, you write the bloody blog) and joined me in my quest.
After a day of near starvation, and with our despairing other halves cheering us on/sighing and rolling their eyes, we leapt headlong into the heart of meaty darkness looming before us.
We were the first to arrive for last week’s installment of culinary S&M, so we were blissfully unaware of the sheer quantity of food heading our way. The first clue came when we were told to sit next to each other rather than opposite – because the table wouldn’t be wide enough for both plates.
There was an audible gasp from all four of us when the first burger arrived, carried by an alarmingly slight waitress who must spend the other six days of the week doing a Sarah Connor-in-Terminator-2-style training routine to make it through a Wednesday evening shift. She wished us luck and retired to a safe distance.
I can’t tell you much about how it tasted after the first couple of bites; for that brief moment, bacon, onion ring, cheese and burger were in perfect juicy delicious harmony, and for a piece of meat the weight of a small child it was cooked amazingly well. But there was no time to sit there and enjoy the bloody thing. We had a job to do.
The pair of us dived into the fray with no regard for our own safety. And my god did we pay for it.
By the time I’d finished the first quarter it was like being waterboarded with mince. After 45 solid minutes of eating every mouthful became like chewing on a leather sofa cushion. The human mouth just isn’t capable of dealing with a 3 inch thick slab of cow.
Pete began laughing hysterically like a madman being led to the gallows, and our other halves looked visibly concerned that it was all going to end in some kind of horrible internal injury.
And if we hadn’t accepted defeat at the halfway mark they probably would have been right. A combination of impending gastric doom and the insurmountable psychological mountain of a huge pile of rapidly cooling mince meant we had to throw in the towel.
Fifty Shades of Mince
In short, it was fun in a weird Fifty Shades of Mince kind of way. Not proper fun, but that strange, unpleasant kind of fun that makes people run marathons and bungee jump out of helicopters. You do it Because it’s There. Just don’t be too disappointed if it defeats you.
Ah well. At least I managed dessert…
Thank you very much to everyone at the North Star – you were all insanely nice and lots of fun, and we particularly appreciated how you kept popping back to make sure none of us had died.
Also, I highly recommend that you read Ed Gilbert’s brilliant blog on the North Star’s Man vs Food night – he not only attempted but defeated the 3lb megaburger last year. I assume that when he’s not blogging, he spends his spare time wrestling grizzly bears. On fire.
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