Red hot: Don’t be fooled by how delicious this burger looks. Image Credit: Clint Egbert/XPRESS

Dubai Heading to the impressive Qube Sports Bar at Meydan Golf Course for the ‘Inferno Burger’ challenge, my otherwise clear head was swirling with conflicting thoughts about how I should approach my date with the hottest burger in town.

‘It’s no burger, it’s a beast,’ the invite proclaimed along with the tagline, ‘Are you man enough to tame the flame?’ Now these kinds of challenges have always attracted me, although honestly I didn’t quite know what to expect in this case. I’d heard from people who had been man enough to try the burger which contained the hottest-rated chillies and peppers available, that it was quite lethal, not enough to kill but enough to batter your ego and your taste buds.

I just kept telling myself things should be fine as long as I listened to reason in my head, although as I sat at the table I was handed a disclaimer which besides saying that the responsibility was all mine, also said I must be in sound mental condition. Now that began to worry me since after hearing its ingredients from chef Sunil Anandan I began to wonder why anybody in their right senses would even try this.

It’s quite chilli out there

The inferno burger is made of 100 per cent freshly ground beef/chicken and packed with a selection of the hottest chillies around. In the patty mix are homegrown UAE chillies, chopped Bird’s Eye chillies from India and Sri Lanka, flaked Cayenne pepper and Chocolate Habanero chillies, which pack in more than twice the spice of a regular Habanero. On top of the burger is Lava sauce, a Sambal-style concoction featuring a red-hot selection of chillies from across south-east Asia. No part of the burger is left without a kick of heat with even the toasted sesame seed bun packing a punch thanks to an infusion of Scotch Bonnet chilli oil and chilli seeds.

Just looking at the burger sitting in front of me was an eye-watering experience. Chef Sunil prodded me to take the first bite which I did with much apprehension. Even after being prepared for the worst, I wasn’t quite prepared for what hit me. My mouth was on fire from just one bite and with the challenge to finish it in 30 minutes without any accompanying drink, including water, I could see this ending only one way.

“The worst that can happen is vomiting or diarrhea, besides the burning sensation,” the chef assured me. I decided not to take my chances despite it tasting particularly good, whatever I could make out amid the fiery sensation.

Naturally, I ended up making it to the chef’s personal wall of shame. At Dh60, the inferno burger is free if consumed within 30 minutes without any accompanying drink, a feat that will also ensure the person’s immortality on Qube’s Wall of Flame.

As far as publicity stunts go, this is a sure-fire winner (forgive the pun). I am not so sure about it making it to the list of the most sought-after delicacies though.