Today’s diners demand more from their burger than the standard extras of bacon and cheese. Though there’s still a time and a place for a straightforward sandwich, if a restaurant doesn’t provide a range of options, grumpy customers are guaranteed to kick up a fuss. Now, you can enjoy everything from jalapenos to mac and cheese, should you wish it. But, while only purists would dismiss most delicious additions, one Carolina restaurant may have taken things a step too far for everybody.
As part of their exotic meat month, held annually every April, Bull City Burger and Brewery have introduced a very special, limited edition burger to their menu. Until the end of the month (un)lucky customers will be able to get their hands on a sandwich containing pasture-raised North Carolina beef, gruyere cheese and spicy chili sauce, all topped with an oven roasted tarantula.
The tarantulas have been raised specifically for the restaurant by a local business specialising in unusual animals. While there are no doubt many masochistic foodies intrigued by the prospect of a spider sandwich, the brewery’s aptly named owner Seth Gross revealed in a recent interview with Reuters that there are only 15 of the burgers available.
Thanks to the strictly limited availability, getting your hands on the new burger is not simply a matter of turning up and ordering. Instead, Bull City Burger have implemented a raffle system to guarantee that everyone has an equal opportunity to sample the sidery snack. Would-be diners must come into the restaurant, fill out a lottery ticket, then wait for their name to be drawn. After that, the customer has two days to arrange their date with destiny.
The challenge itself has a few extra perks, beyond the chance to eat a tarantula. For $30 dollars, contestants receive the burger and a side of dirty fries. If they successfully finish the whole thing, diners get a limited edition tarantula challenge t-shirt and receive social media immortality in the form of a photo with Mr Gross himself.
The latest offering continues Bull City Burger’s proud tradition of odd April menu items. Previous features have included iguana, camel, alligator and a smorgasbord of insects, all served in a variety of ingenious ways. For instance, the restaurant recently unveiled a second adventurous option, for those who prefer their food less leggy, in the form of a python curry. However, despite their impressive record with strange critters, it’s clear that the new tarantula challenge takes the oddly flavoured biscuit.
As strange as a tarantula may seem, it’s important to bear in mind that the insect is actually considered a delicacy in some parts of the world. In Cambodia, deep fried spiders are served whole by street food vendors to locals and tourists alike. The food has been variously said to have a “crab-like” flavour, as well as an unpleasant acrid taste. Clearly, it all depends on the quality of your spider.
With April rapidly drawing to a close, anyone wishing to get their hands on this spidery slider will have to move quickly. The burger has already been conquered by an enthusiastic 10-year-old Carolinian resident, proving that age is no obstacle for strange tastes. Presumably, the whole of North Carolina is waiting with some trepidation to see what Bull City come up with for 2019.