It seems that everywhere we turn there's a new city asking "How can we be the most aggressively Texan city in the state?" There must be some sort of underground cooking competition we're missing because this state has some seriously enormous food. San Antonio has the biggest pizzas. Austin has the biggest donuts. And Houston? We have one of the biggest and definitely the tallest burgers in the state.
At Mel's Country Cafe in Tomball, you can get a towering 3-pound burger known as the "Mega Mel." This massive burger is one and a half pounds of ground beef (four patties), one pound of bacon, 1/4 pound of cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and pickles. That's a whopping 5,218 calories right there.
And here's the challenge—you must eat the entire burger in under two hours with no assistance and still be able to walk and talk afterward without getting sick.
The rare winners get their name proudly displayed on the wall of conquerers. But win or lose, you get a shirt that either says "I was defeated by the Mega Mel" or "I survived the Mega Mel." We're hoping you survive either way though.
Here are some techniques to finishing the challenge: smash it down (with a mallet perhaps?), chop it up into a burger salad (health restored), start from the top and bite all the way down (expert level move), or just take a picture, pretend to your friends like you won the challenge and hand it back.
The ultimate champ—Daria Emmons—completed it in just 20 minutes, and has held her place since 2013. She's a petite little woman, so I'm skeptical about it.
You can get the burger for the price of just $24.99, but I'm guessing you pay for it in more ways than one.
So, is the price worth defeating Daria and claiming your Texan throne?
Mel's Country Cafe
Address: 24814 Stanolind Rd Tomball, TX 77375
Why you need to go: Next to chugging beer from a giant cowboy boot, it's pretty much the ultimate Texan challenge.