Mucho Macho challenge: fight against spice

As I walked into Cazuelas Mexican Cantina, I was greeted by the photos of people on the wall of fame who completed the extra spicy Mucho Macho Burrito challenge. It wasn’t the 12 inches of rice, refried beans and steak that scared me, but it was the super-hot habanero sauce that made me consider a giant pizza challenge instead.

Those who can finish the spicy burrito in less than 20 minutes are awarded a free meal and T-shirt, have their photo hung in the front of the restaurant and are able to say they can handle anything on the Scoville scale.

After mentally preparing myself all day, I was determined to finish the challenge. However, my initial confidence was immediately shattered when the waitress brought me a waiver to sign before beginning and told me if I got up or drank any milk, I would automatically fail the challenge.

After it was placed on the table, my eyes started watering and I knew this challenge was going to be more difficult than I had anticipated. I grabbed my fork and waited for the 20 minute timer to begin. When the time started, I took my first bite and immediately regretted ever stepping foot in that restaurant.

My tongue was going numb and my stomach felt as though it was burning from the inside out. The thought of a glass of milk sounded better than anything. After five excruciating minutes and only two bites of the burrito, I tapped out.

The Mucho Macho Burrito challenge was not the heat I expected. I can say I attempted the challenge, but I was no match against the habanero sauce. After five glasses of milk and an embarrassing amount of bread, I still couldn’t lick my lips or feel my tongue.