Wednesday, 4 September 2013

The Terminator Burger Challenge

It's not often that I crave a burger.  I'm not talking about a bog standard thin patty with a bit of plastic cheese in a slightly dry bun (although I do love plastic cheese, reminds me of University) but a real meaty burger that requires your jaw to stretch and preferably takes a knife and fork to eat it if you don't want to drip all over the floor.  Recently though I have been craving this exact sort of burger and strangely enough so has Steve. 
Both of us probably need to up our iron intake or something.

There is one difference between Steve and I.  When I get a craving, I tend to just ignore it unless it is immediately to hand in the kitchen (apart from the one time Steve had to order me a burger at 1am as I couldn't sleep the craving was so strong).  When Steve gets a craving, we go out for dinner.
I like it when Steve gets cravings!

There is one place in Canterbury that we had been hearing rumours about online.  Pictures of burgers as big as your head were surfacing on people's profiles on Facebook, alongside defeated expressions and loosened belts.  We had been talking about investigating it for a while so we called up RV to see if he was free (he was) and headed into town for the evening.
It turns out that there is a new burger challenge in town.  Meet The Terminator, the creation of the team at The Picture House. 24oz of lean beef pattie, 4 rashers of bacon, 4 slices of cheddar cheese, spicy Spanish sausage, pickle, baby gem, smoked paprika mayo, tomato, 4 giant onion rings and a mountain of chips and coleslaw.

The deal?  Finish it and you get it for free.
Don't look at me like that - I was going nowhere near it!  Steve and RV on the other hand stepped proudly up to the challenge.

There aren't many food challenges in Canterbury but both the boys had, in their early 20's, completed the starter, burger and dessert challenge set by the now long-closed Fatty Arbuckles and Steve had also attempted the Marlowe Dessert Challenge earlier this year.  They couldn't let a new challenge go by untested.

When the burgers came out there was a collective gasp around the restaurant.  A table of young girls next to us actually leant over for a closer look.
Compared to them my Italian Job of 8oz lean beef patty, homemade pesto, mozzarella, home made salsa and chips looked positively saintlike (and tasted really good too)!
The boys looked at each other, looked at their wooden serving platters, took deep breaths and dived in.  Steve went for the isolation technique, removing his favourite bits and starting work on those first.
RV went for a more systematic approach, working through the burger in layers.
They had 1 hour, after which the challenge would be declared lost regardless.  They didn't even get close.  I'm not sure how anyone could to be honest - the size of the bun is a full meal and that coleslaw mountain is at least half a jar of mayo on its own!
After a valiant effort by both of them, they were forced to admit defeat and throw in the towel napkin.  I'm fairly sure that their arteries were breathing huge sighs of relief as they did so.
As the boys digested their food and groaned I went for a wander around The Picture House.
Near the Westgate Towers this bar and restaurant is popular with the student and local population alike.  We came here for Ellie's hen do, having hired the balcony as a private area for us and they also operate as a pre-theatre venue with the option of ordering from the theatre menu if you need a quick meal.
The menu is good and includes a 'Gourmet Burger Menu' (one of the only places in Canterbury that actually has a burger menu) plus other restaurant fare.  It gets busy so book in advance!
It lives up to its old world Hollywood name with dressing room lights illuminating the corridor and bouncing back images of 1950's Canterbury alongside screen icons.

There is a giant screen projecting old black and white films (and sometimes modern classics) onto the back wall, providing entertainment as your wait for your friends to join you.
As mentioned, there are very few burger joints in Canterbury so it's great to find somewhere that does a good variety of burgers, plus a challenge for those extreme eaters out there!

Man Vs Food, eat your heart out.

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