New Orleans has been given many descriptors over its long history, but one of the most fitting terms used to describe this city is extravagant—from its sights and its people to, especially, its food. The word is very appropriate, considering how this city has found a lot of its pop culture fame through its food. So, what happens when people in this extravagant city decide to kick their food up a notch? You get some great eating challenges that only the bravest of souls with the emptiest of stomachs should attempt. Here, we are highlighting some of the intense food challenges that you can try in the Greater New Orleans Area. There are a lot of restaurants in New Orleans that offer different kinds of challenges like Acme Oyster House and Bobby Hebert’s Cajun Cannon; so, go hit the town and see how many of these extravagant challenges you can completely master.
Bayou Beast Challenge
Bayou Hot Wings, 6221 S. Claiborne Ave. #104, bayouhotwings.com
Dubbed as having the best wings in the world by Adam Richman of Man v. Food fame, Bayou Hot Wings not only serves up some incredible-tasting wings, but it is also home to the intimidating Bayou Beast Challenge. The challenge, created by owners Allen Nguyen and Kyle Makepeace, is to eat an extremely spicy 10-piece chicken wing dish made with imported spices from different countries in Asia. People looking to attempt the challenge need to call in advance to make a reservation and are required to sign a waiver before attempting, as these spicy wings have sent a few people to the hospital.
Challengers have five minutes to eat everything off the bones without the help of other foods, liquids, and napkins. They also can’t strip the meat off the bone and are allowed no bathroom breaks. If participants end up throwing up, they will be disqualified, unless they are willing to eat their own vomit. For the lucky few who complete the challenge, they will have their picture on Bayou Hot Wings’ Hall of Fame in the restaurant, their website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Winners are also rewarded with a limited edition Bayou Hot Wings “Beast” t-shirt. If you think you’re enough of a beast to conquer the Bayou Beast Challenge, then head over to Bayou Hot Wings and be ready to feel the burn.
Cannon Burger Challenge
Bobby Hebert’s Cajun Cannon, 4101 Veterans Memorial Blvd., bobbyheberts.com
Known for combining authentic Louisiana food culture and Louisiana sports culture, Bobby Herbert’s Cajun Cannon also serves a true mountain of a burger dubbed the Cannon Burger Challenge. This challenge entails eating a burger made up of seven medium-well patties topped with cheddar cheese, pickles, tomatoes, onions, and three golden fried shrimp. This hill on a plate also comes served with Cajun Hebert Fries, which is a large portion of crispy fries topped with a crawfish mushroom cream sauce and cheddar cheese. Challengers are tasked with eating the entire dish and absolutely no sharing is allowed. Make sure you come in practically starving because failure will result in a $50 bill for the challenge. If you ended beating the challenge, you get a free meal as well as bragging rights. Take a drive out to Metairie, maybe watch a game or two at Bobby Hebert’s Cajun Cannon, and see if you can win against the Cannon Burger Challenge.
Tchoupitoulas Sundae Challenge
The Creole Creamery, 4924 Prytania St., creolecreamery.com
The Creole Creamery is the perfect place to escape from New Orleans’s humidity with its wide assortment of delicious ice creams. If you really want to beat the heat, though, then you need to go for their Tchoupitoulas Sundae Challenge. Named because it’s as big as the street itself, the Tchoupitoulas Sundae is a mammoth sundae made up of your choice of eight scoops of ice cream and eight different toppings, all served in a massive bowl with whipped cream, sprinkles, cherries, and wafers. The sundae is $25, and while it is available at both Creole Creamery locations, the challenge itself can only be attempted at the Prytania Street location. Each challenger has to eat the entire sundae by himself/herself and cannot receive any type of help. Winners will have their names immortalized on The Creole Creamery’s Hall of Fame plaque, which holds a long line of names since the first-ever winner completed the challenge on April 3, 2004. If you have a monster of a sweet tooth, then come on over to The Creole Creamery and tackle their Tchoupitoulas Sundae Challenge.
Dat Dog , 3336 Magazine St., datdog.com
Known for its insane selection of sausages, Dat Dog is the one place to go if you are hungering for a good old-fashioned, or new-fashioned, hot dog. However, there is a monster lurking in the depths of Dat Dog’s kitchen, and it’s called the Datzilla. The Datzilla Challenge is truly a sight to behold and is not for the faint of heart. Whoever wants to attempt the challenge needs to call their order ahead and make a reservation. Challengers will have 20 minutes to try and vanquish the Datzilla Dog, which contains a hot sausage, an alligator sausage, a crawfish sausage, fries, andouille sauce, cheese, chili, onions, jalapeños, sour cream, and guacamole, as well as two glasses of Dat Dog’s house beer. Not only do competitors have to get all of that down within 20 minutes, they also have to keep all of it down for 20 minutes. If the participants vomit at all during that time, then they forfeit the challenge. Whoever can successfully slay the Datzilla will be rewarded with a free meal, free Dat Dog merchandise, and have their picture taken to congratulate their victory. So come, all you brave souls, and see if you can slay Dat Dog’s Datzilla Challenge.
Big John Burger Challenge
Gretna Depot Café & Spirits, 362 Huey P. Long Ave., Gretna, facebook.com/GretnaDepotCafeSpirits
Located in the heart of beautiful Old Gretna, Gretna Depot Café & Spirits provides locals with delicious sandwiches, hearty entrée platters, and some of the best burgers you can find on the Westbank. One of these amazing burgers is the Big John Burger. This juicy, colossal 2-pound (32-ounce) burger, which is so big it’s served on a 9-inch muffuletta bread bun, comes dressed with lettuce, tomatoes, bacon, cheese, and a side of fries. Challengers will have to finish the burger and fries by themselves within 30 minutes. People who finish everything and don’t end up having a heart attack will be rewarded with a free t-shirt and Gretna Depot’s amazing signature drink, the 32-ounce Trainwreak. The next time you find yourself on the Westbank, head over to Gretna Depot Café & Spirits and see if you can truly handle the Big John Burger Challenge.
5th Quarter Challenge
The Bayou Burger and Sports Company, 503 Bourbon St., bayouburger.com
Feel like taking on a challenge while you’re out on the town, so to speak? Well, make sure to make your way over to Bayou Burger on Bourbon Street because they have a real challenge ready and waiting for you. Called the 5th Quarter Challenge, this dish is composed of a four-pound, multiple patty burger loaded with cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, pickles, and red onion, as well as a two-pound side of Bayou Burger’s Debris Fries, which are topped with cheddar jack cheese, roast beef, gravy, sour cream, and green onions. Competitors are only given 45 minutes to eat the entire six-pound challenge. To the winners, a spot on the Wall of Honors and a complimentary 5th Quarter Challenge jersey are given as rewards. To the losers, living the rest of their lives with the knowledge of their defeat, receiving the Shirt of Shame, and having to pay $45. Stroll your way over to The Bayou Burger and Sports Company, take on the 5th Quarter Challenge, and walk away with either a winner’s jersey or the Shirt of Shame.
Pho Cam Ly, 3814 Magazine St., phocamly.com/home
Not only known for its great-tasting Vietnamese cuisine, Pho Cam Ly, located on ever-busy Magazine Street, is also home to the daunting Pho Challenge. Served in a bowl that is bigger than most people’s torsos, the Pho Challenge is an oversized Vietnamese soup made up of two pounds of noodles and two pounds of meat. Challengers, who must read and sign a waiver before attempting the feat, must finish this terrifying challenge within one hour. If completed, the winners are rewarded with a free t-shirt, their picture on Pho Cam Ly’s Wall of Fame, their tab being covered, and well-earned bragging rights. Be forewarned, however, that losers will have to pay their own tab if they can’t finish the challenge, which is a whopping $50. If you think you have the stomach for it, then come over to Pho Cam Ly and try to master their Pho Challenge.
Bonus Burger Challenge
Barcadia New Orleans, 601 Tchoupitoulas St., barcadianeworleans.com
It’s save to assume that everyone in New Orleans is always looking to have some fun. Filled to the brim with drinks, food, and vintage arcade games, Barcadia is one of those places where fun’s to be had, especially if you’re in the mood for a food challenge. Barcadia’s Bonus Burger Challenge, which is a double patty burger with cheddar cheese, pepper jack cheese, a fried egg, fried onion rings, caramelized onions, sliced avocado, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and a side of fries and two pints of beer, is a truly artery clogging dish that contestants will have to get down in just 20 minutes. Contestants can’t drink any other liquid aside from the two pints of beer, can order the burger at any temperature but can’t alter any of the toppings, and can dismantle the burger, as long as all of the ingredients are eaten within 20 minutes. If anyone ends up losing their lunch within those 20 minutes, they will automatically fail and failure will result in a $30 tab. Any and all winners will get a free meal, a free t-shirt, and have their name on Barcadia’s wall. If you feel like you have the courage (naturally or through liquid means), then go to Barcadia New Orleans and see if your iron stomach can contain the Bonus Burger Challenge.