No winners yet in Rocky's epic burger eating challenge
THIS humble reporter doesn't shy away from a food eating challenge, but when I laid eyes on the monster 'Norm Challenge Burger', my confident bluster faltered.
The epic burger, created by the Central Park Motel's chef Nina Jakins, came with the promise that "if you could eat the whole thing under 5 minutes 35 seconds, you get it for free”.
Coming with two beef patties, double bacon, double Swiss cheese, onion rings, American mustard, aioli, topped with a cheesy jalapeno sauce and a mountain of chips, the 'Norm Challenge Burger' seemingly required a dislocated jaw to get your mouth all the way around it.
After diving headlong into the eating challenge, I have one word of advice for prospective contestants - maybe give the hot-off-the-grill meat patties a bit of time to cool down first.
My approach was to break the burger down one patty and bun at a time and just keep on ploughing through, saving the chips for last.
There was also a need to shed your dignity and be prepared to wear a lot of sauce on your face.
In the end I got through the burger but was only able to nibble on some tokenistic chips before the timer ran out.
After the challenge, Ms Jakins explained that the gentleman who had gotten the closest to completing the challenge had adopted a similar burger splitting strategy and only had a couple of chips left on his plate before the timer ran out.
Ms Jakins explained the rationale behind the unusual burger name.
"I named it after Norm, the manager who has been here for a long time and put a bit of fun on the menu,” she said.
"He eats like a sparrow, one chop and a handful of veges for dinner so I thought I'd name a mega burger after him.”
She said the burger eating challenge, which kicked off on Wednesday, was "to have a bit of gimmick, just to get it out there and challenge the public and at the moment on Facebook we're having a really good response”.
The strategy appeared to be working with 12 wannabe contenders stepping up for the challenge at lunchtime yesterday.
"We tried to do it ourselves and couldn't do it,” Ms Jakins said.
"With that amount of chips, 400g of meat on the burger alone and it's got that spice with the jalepenos as well.”
Ms Jakins said challenges like this brought the fun back to eating out in Rockhampton with fellow diners often caught up in watching and cheering on the food gorging spectacles.
She believed it was only a matter of time before someone knocked the challenge over.
The burger costs $16 normally and is only on their lunch menu on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday between 11.30am and 2pm. Book your burger in advance on 4927 2333 or just walk in.