Revenge is a dish best served…
As men we spend a lot of time attacking each other, or being critical of one another. A common male pastime involves a group of men sitting in a room, drinking beers, and ragging on each other for one reason or another with no filter, buffer or regard for anyone’s feelings. This experience is the essence of men. In true male spirit, I went for blood, and the gauntlet was thrown down when I decided to state [unapologetically] that Brad Lyons’ Achilles’ heel is an Asian fusion burger. I do not know if Brad, Slater’s 50/50’s Executive Chef, or Scott Slater, Owner of Slater’s 50/50, had read any of my blogs prior this month’s entry on the Asian Pork Belly Burger. Either way, the opportunity for retaliation would present itself at a filming of an episode for Travel Channel‘s Food Paradise. Food Paradise is showcasing some of the nation’s hottest and spiciest foods, beers and spirits.
The 50 Alarm Burger, Slater’s Buffalo Chicken Mac ‘N Cheese, Latitude 33’s Spicy Camel, and Ironfire’s 7th Ring of NüHELL IPL certainly epitomizes hot and spicy. I put on my bold face, and request that O.G. Chris, Slater’s 50/50’s bar manager, inform the staff and film crew that I would be going for broke and trying everything…on camera.
Naga Bhut Jolokia (Ghost Chilies), beer-battered (unseeded and aged cream cheese stuffed) Habanero poppers, sliced and freshly ripened Jalapeños, three-alarm Colby Jack cheese, and ghost chili-bacon jam adorn a white brioche bun to make up the 50 Alarm Burger.
My wavier is signed, my gloves are on, the camera is rolling, sound is checked, and everyone is looking at me, eagerly, as a child looks out a pane glass window and awaits the arrival of his father. I bite, immediately the fresh green Jalapeño attacks my olfactory senses, marching forward with a youthful and upbeat stride up towards the battleground of my nostrils then a quick about-face back down my esophagus. The war has begun. I carry on, chomping and chewing the juicy and fiery hot fire patty. The cream cheese stuffed Habanero poppers meet the tip of my tongue with atomic explosion. Eating and talking is a challenge. My facial expressions are epic and illustrate the intensity of this burger. My head is engulfed in heat and sweat beads roll down my forehead, my mouth is on fire and I seek comfort from Ironfire’s 7th Ring of NüHELL. Chugging the beer, and catching a glimpse of the amazement from the film crew, I carry-on taking another bite of the burger, then seeking further refuge from the Buffalo Chicken Mac ‘N Cheese. The bleu cheese offers a little comfort but not enough to curb the attack of the hot buffalo chicken bites hidden within. With me beaten to a pulp, the filming stops, I quickly request a glass of milk, and the vengefully waged war is won.
I bow, humbly, before Scott and Brad in reverence. The 50 Alarm Burger accomplishes its mission of annihilating my tongue, esophagus and stomach lining. Off camera, I completed the burger, both beers, and packed up the Buffalo Chicken Mac ‘N Cheese for later consumption.
Scott, Brad…the two of you may have won this round, that is fine. Despite that, looking at the 2014 Slater’s 50/50 Burger Bracket, and seeing the Orange Chicken Burger having the lowest ranking score of 29%, my opinion stands: an Asian fusion burger is the Achilles’ heel of my friend and executive chef, Brad Lyons.
UPDATE August 3, 2014
Hot & Spicy Paradise 2 – Original Airdate: Tuesday, August 5, 2014
Slater’s 50/50 Pasadena
61 North Raymond Ave.
Pasadena, CA 91103
Hours: Sun 9:30a.m. – 11:00p.m., Mon-Thurs 11:00a.m. – 11:00p.m.,
Fri & Sat 11:00a.m. – 12:00a.m.
Breakfast is back every Sunday, starting at 9:30a.m. during regular football season!