They didn't require much convincing. The boys were in. The Man or Mouse challenge at the Pyrmont Bridge Hotel was in their sights. All that stood between them and chest-thumping glory was a plate of chips, salad and one kilo of rump steak.
How much steak do you get for one kilo? We debate its size while we wait for it to arrive. The steak is part of their regular bistro menu, a one kilo "prime grain fed rump" that is normally priced at $36 with a recommendation that "we suggest you share".
The steak comes with either chips and salad or mash and vegetables. Your choice of sauce - pepper, mushroom, red wine or bearnaise - is also included.
Man or Mouse challenge: 1kg of rump steak, chips and salad $20 on Thursdays
The Man or Mouse challenge is available every Thursday night. The bar isn't terribly busy tonight, but most diners seem to prefer to head upstairs to the bistro. We're content to set up camp with beers on the ground floor, keeping company with a handful of international backpackers and several disinterested locals as we watch the steady stream of office workers, residents and casino-goers passing by.
You can hear the gulps of nervousness when the steaks finally land at our table. One kilo of steak is evidently a generous slab of cow. Lady Gaga could have fashioned a dress out of it and still had leftovers for a handbag.
The steak may be hefty, but it's the mountain range of chips beneath it that seems to strike the greater fear.
Richard is ready
We're convinced that Richard has what it takes as he wields his steak knife with youthful glee. Minh and I, meanwhile, happily concede there's no way we can complete the challenge. Bar staff happily let us share the $20 steak between two as long as we agree we are opting out of the challenge. They even provide us with an extra plate.
Let's be honest. One kilo of meat is a lot of protein. The steak is cooked surprisingly well - a touch gristly in parts, but there's a delicious smoky char from the grill marks, and ours is served at medium rare as requested. Even between two people, we struggle, getting through most of the meat but only eating half of the chips. I reckon this could easily feed three people.
Richard 0 Food 1
And so despite our cajoling and earnest cheering from the sidelines, both Richard and Irish eventually, painfully and dolefully wave the white flag of defeat. Richard was so close! Irish - not so much.
Is it possible? Yes it is. We witnessed a few victories, humbly worn with no Adam Richman fist-pumping or Man vs Food style post-match press conferences. If you do manage to clear the plate, you won't receive a t-shirt, or get your photo on the wall, but you will get your $20 back. And maybe a night of indigestion for your troubles.
Man or Mouse? You decide.
The Man or Mouse challenge is available Thursdays 6pm-9pm. 1kg rump steak, chips and salad - clear your plate and the meal is free. Meal must be consumed in front a service area to the satisfaction of an authorised team member. No sharing is allowed.
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Pyrmont Bridge Hotel
96 Union Street, Pyrmont, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9660 6996
Bistro opening hours:
9am - 10pm 7days
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4/19/2012 02:36:00 a.m.