Burger king Stephen gets teeth into 'Man Vs Food' challenge
THE sound of banter and laughter filled the room, signifying high spirits last Saturday for a 'Man Vs Food' challenge at D'lish Food Emporium in Mallow, promoting the Gilbert Centre's new café.
With many of the attendant spectators joking about the meal of a six-pound burger to come, taking up the challenge was Stephen Neville from Ballincollig.
The attendant chefs diligently checked that the meal for the grand event was cooked to perfection, tended to by Stephen's friend, D'lish proprietor Cathal McCarthy from Bweeng; with their excitement partially masked by the distractingly calm music playing in the café.
The cumbersome meal was tackled by Stephen at 1.21pm, with the challenge to see if he could gobble the lot in an hour - or at all.
Friends, family and photographers alike gathered to take photos of the nervous young man's gastronomic ordeal. Stephen's friends - quietly hiding their disbelief at the sheer size of the gargantuan meal - encouraged him with plenty cheering and applauding as Stephen tucked in.
Undaunted by his audience, and the gigantic burger, Syephen cut up his meal into segments to consume the burger piece by piece, with whatever sauce he wanted at the ready on a side dish. Removing the huge top burger bun Stephen shocked most onlookers by placing several rashers upon the cheese covered burger, all the while laughing at seeing everyone else's reaction.
"Stephen's typical five-a-day", a friend called out - and received an approving thumbs up.
At 2.55, over an hour later, a thoroughly stuffed Stephen finally leant back, shaking his head, followed by crossing his arms at what remained of the food before him in an 'X' shape to inform everyone that he could take no more.
Even through the audience's chanting encouragement to continue eating, Stephen could only take in another couple of bites before throwing in the towel after eating more than two -thirds of the burger - over four pounds of meat. Still, he received a tremendous applause from all present for his dedication to the cause.
Proprietor Cathal then emerged from the crowd to bring Stephen a celebratory 'Man Vs Food' T-shirt, as Stephen shook hands with all chefs involved in the creation of the mammoth feast.
With Stephen heading away to recuperate after his ordeal none could argue but that it has been a memorable opening for the proud owners of D'lish food emporium.