Weekend wing enthusiasts be warned: West End Tavern's Wing King Challenge is not for the faint of heart. With bragging rights, the 50 wings for free, a picture on the wall of fame, a T-shirt, and a dozen free wings (for whenever you want wings again) on the table, challengers must eat 50 hot wings clean to the bone in a half-hour without leaving the table, and they have to keep all the wings down.
At Eagle's Deli, $60 buys you an enormous hamburger. Namely, it buys you the Eagle's Challenge, which comes with 5 pounds of hamburger, 20 pieces of bacon, 20 pieces of American cheese, 5 pounds of fries, one pickle, and a soda. Down it all in less than an hour, though, and it's free — and it comes with an $100 gift card.
Complete the Carnivore Challenge at Atlanta's Big Pie in the Sky and you'll actually make money. This challenge allows two people to finish the $50 and 11-pound Carnivore Pizza topped with pepperoni, ground beef, Italian sausage, ham, and bacon in less than an hour. If they succeed, $250 is theirs, but they can't get up or throw up in the process.
Food challenges are not limited to conventional fast-food picks, as evidenced by Kenka in New York's East Village. Their Jumbo Curry Challenge puts 4 pounds of curry on a plate with rice that's meant to be devoured in 20 minutes or less. Finish and it's free, but be defeated and you're out $25.
Leisurely driving down California's blissful Pacific Coast Highway absolutely doesn't prepare you for the Brahma Bull Challenge at The Rib Line in San Luis Obispo. The barbecued feat includes 3 pounds of tri-tip steak sandwiched in sourdough bread and topped with your choice of barbecue sauce or salsa. Free for the finishers or $30 for those who can't make it.
As the name suggests, Burritos Mexican Grill's Mongo Burrito Challenge is an enormous burrito, with all the usual fixings, that weighs in at 8 pounds. That they actually include the burrito's dimensions on their web site (22.5 inches-by-8.5 inches-by-5 inches) is a testament to its mind-boggling size. Finish, and your meal is free, plus you'll get one free dinner each month for a year, or $50.
Sliders may sound easy to get down — such cute, small little hamburgers! But Chompie's, in Arizona, has thought of the epic Ultimate Slider Challenge, which is 5 pounds of sliders (12 in total), served with onion strings, going down the gullet in 30 minutes or less. Finish them all and they're free, plus you get a T-shirt, bragging rights, and your picture on the Wall of Fame.
At Lucky's Sandwich Company in Chicago, sandwiches are on another level — they put a heap of fries onto already enormous sandwiches. And their Sandwich Contest is the diner's choice of any three sandwiches to be completed in less than an hour, which gets you a T-shirt, the third sandwich free, and a photo on the wall. Finish in less than 30 minutes, though, and it's all free.
What child doesn't dream of having a never-ending banana split? You may have grown up slightly, but the challenge now exists at the San Francisco Creamery — it's called the Kitchen Sink Challenge. You must finish three bananas, scoops of up to eight ice cream flavors, eight servings of toppings, a mountain of whipped cream, almonds, and cherries on top. Finish in a half-hour and you get free ice cream for a year.
In true "everything's bigger" fashion, the Big Texan Steak Ranch boasts the Texas King Challenge, which consists of a 72-ounce steak dinner, complete with a baked potato, salad, dinner roll, and shrimp cocktail. It all must be completed in an hour or less to be free; if you take longer or don't finish, it's $72.00. While most attempts have failed, the youngest person to tackle the steak was an 11-year-old boy.
It may be called the Nine Pounder, but BGR, The Burger Joint's challenger burger actually weighs in at a whopping 15.4 pounds, once the bun and condiments are factored in. If you can down the 9-pound burger, two heads of lettuce, eight tomatoes, three onions, four whole pickles, and a "river" of their signature sauce in one sitting, it's free and you get a bottle of Maalox. Otherwise, it serves 10 to 15 people.
Before you attempt to join the 15 Dozen Club at New Orleans' Acme Oyster House, you must sign a medical release form. The club is for people who have downed a minimum of 15 dozen oysters in under an hour, a feat which gets you 50% off the oysters, a t-shirt, hat, and your name on the winner's board. Beat the record (currently at 42 dozen), though, and they're completely free.