11 minutes was the time to beat. To beat and eat the Tacopocalypse’s Hot Mess Express — a crazy concoction of beer-battered waffle, gravy, potatoes, cheese, scrambled eggs, slaw, unidentified sauces and a mess of beef, chicken, and pork pieces.
As the Des Moines is Not Boring food blogger, I’d been asked to participate in the Change’s second food eating contest. See pictures from the first contest at HotShots. The instructions were simple. Show up and eat. To prepare, I fasted for the day, listened to plenty of ‘Eye of the Tiger,’ and watched some professional eating contest videos online.
As I watched the food eaters dunking hot dogs in water, I hoped this friendly competition wouldn’t go that far. However, full disclosure, the girl next to me did dip her waffle in water and said it went down real easy – mental note for next time.
I arrived got my apron and awaited the “Hot Mess Express.” At first I thought it was going to be spicy but the only spice was a little bit of wasabi crème on the side (seriously this dish must have had 100 ingredients in it).
There were 6 competitors in total and the competition was fierce. There were contestants from Raygun, Willis Auto, the Derby Dames. With a little trash talk and fun introductions underway, the competition began.
What did it taste like? If you took a big bite, it tasted like a weird chili/gravy waffle. I started off with big bites and quickly switched to a small bite strategy: chew, chew swallow, chew, chew swallow.
After three minutes in they announced a halfway break. During the half-time challenge, an audience member of our choice attempted to toss 5 tortillas into a bucket and tag us back into the race. After the 30 second break of digesting and water sipping, it was back into eating. Unfortunately (or probably fortunately in the long run) I was defeated pretty quickly. While the rest of us were probably about ¼ of the way through our dishes when Phil James polished off his plate at 6:10 — a new recorded.
Needless to say I didn’t win, but I did hold my own! I had a blast and got a gift certificate to Tacopocolypse. I probably won’t be ordering the ‘Hot Mess Express’ anytime soon but it’s available to order if anyone wants to take on the challenge themselves!