New York City is one of the most visited cities in the world. It is internationally known for Manhattan, the Statue of Liberty, The Rockefeller Center, the 5th avenue, its yellow cabs, Yankees baseball team, Brooklyn, Queens and Harlem districts,… but also for being a cultural melting-pot. During your stay, you should definitely try out some of the best kitchens in the country. Book a hotel room in downtown New York in order to facilitate your travel. Go and explore the different districts like a real New Yorker, from Chinatown to Upper West Side, walk through Little Italy and Chelsea, and try the unbelievable variety of food that is available.
Many people do food challenges for the glory. Some do it for the free t-shirt. And then there are others who are truly just always that hungry. Whatever the case may be, New York City has some surprisingly intimidating food challenges that hurt your stomach just to think about. Massive steaks, spicy wings and loaded sandwiches can be found all over the place, but these are a few that only the strongest stomachs can attempt.
Kenska – Finish 4 pounds of house curry and rice in 20 minutes. No t-shirts here, but the meal (worth $25) is free if you finish in time.
Brick Lane Curry House – Rather than a massive amount of food, how about a massive amount of flavor. Well actually, when you take on the Phaal Challenge, you’re more likely to experience “excruciatingly hot curry, more pain and sweat than flavor.” If you think you can handle it though, you get a free beer to commemorate your victory and a certificate to remind you that you’re a Phaal Curry Monster.
Buffalo Cantina – 2 wings basted in a variety of pepper extracts. No standing, wiping or napkin use allowed. If you can do it, these 24 wings are free and you get your pretty, sweaty face on the Buffalo Cantina Wall of Fame.
Ottomanelli Brothers – Finish a 24 ounce steak burger, fries and a 20 ounce soda within 20 minutes and lunch is free. This is the “Hulk” Steak Burger Challenge, so while 24 ounces may not sound super intimidating to many hearty eaters, even the pros should beware.
LoneStar Bar & Grill – There’s an 87 ounce steak with your name on it, and when you can make hunk of meat and a side go down smooth, you get the steak and t-shirt free. Plus you get a picture on their website – so future employees have one more thing to be impressed with while they’re screening you.
The Lunchbox – This Staten Island joint is home to not one, not two, but three different ways to either embarrass yourself or triumph over the Lunchbox. Attempting “The Motherload” gets you 8 pounds of Mojo sloppy joe on a 16 inch Kaiser roll. That sounds intense, but that’s not all. You delicious sandwich is topped with 1 pound of cheddar, ¼ pound of onions and all of it has to be finished within 30 minutes. While that sounds bad, you are allowed to have a partner and one choice of utensil to defeat this sandwich with. the “151” is 151 ounces of any flavor milkshake you want (they have the 3 standard flavors) and must be fully slurped down in under 20 minutes. The “Death Wish” is the one you really need to be concerned with – clearly. The spiciest buffalo wings are layered with 3 levels of hot, including the Habanero Ghost Chili extract (the Guinness Book of World Record’s hottest pepper in the world.) Eat within 10 minutes with no utensils or napkins, plus you can’t drink anything for 10 minutes after the last bite goes down! Winners and losers both get t-shirts in these challenges, although the loser’s t-shirts aren’t very flattering, and the winners are the only one’s who don’t have to pay!
Food challenges are one of the best ways to get a free meal in NYC, assuming you can finish. Most of them, you probably won’t need another meal for a while, so they’re generally a great investment when you win. If you’re really trying to save money, check out all the New York City deals and coupons that can save you on hotels, shows, tours and nightlife. You might need that hotel while you fight off this food coma, and then get ready to check out the next one when you’re feeling hungry again!