Heart Attack Grill
|Type||Limited liability company|
|Industry||Full service restaurant|
|Headquarters||Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.|
|Owner(s)||Diet Center LLC|
The Heart Attack Grill is an American hamburger restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada (formerly located in Chandler, Arizona). It has courted controversy by serving high-calorie menu items with deliberately provocative names coupled with waitresses in sexually provocative clothing.
The establishment is a hospital theme restaurant: waitresses ("nurses") take orders ("prescriptions") from the customers ("patients"). A tag is wrapped on the patient's wrist showing which foods they order and a "doctor" examines the "patients" with a stethoscope. The menu includes "Single", "Double", "Triple", and "Quadruple Bypass" hamburgers, ranging from 8 to 32 ounces (230 to 910 g) of beef (up to about 8,000 calories), all-you-can-eat "Flatliner Fries" (cooked in pure lard), beer and tequila, and soft drinks such as Jolt and Mexican-bottled Coca-Cola made with real sugar. Customers over 350 lb (160 kg) in weight eat for free if they weigh in with a doctor or nurse before each burger. Beverages and to-go orders are excluded and sharing food is also not allowed for the free food deal.
The Heart Attack Grill was founded in 2005 in Chandler, Arizona, by Jon Basso with the declared intent of serving "nutritional pornography", food "so bad for you it's shocking". The idea came when writing a marketing thesis about fitness training studios, as he became inspired by stories about his clients cheating on their diets. A second Heart Attack Grill opened in Dallas, Texas in May 2011, but closed in October 2011.
One of the restaurant's promotions is a reward for customers who finish a Triple or Quadruple Bypass Burger, after which they are placed on a wheelchair and wheeled out to their vehicle by their "personal nurse".
The Dallas location suffered a similar fate within a few months after that. According to a blog entry in the Dallas Morning News, as of October 12, 2011, the locks at the West End location were changed due to nonpayment of rent. Additionally, food critic Scott Reitz of the Dallas Observer reported being unable to reach the manager by phone and that the restaurant's official website had been "scrubbed of any Dallas location information."
On February 11, 2012, a customer suffered what was reported to be an apparent heart attack while eating a "Triple Bypass Burger" at the grill. Restaurant owner Jon Basso called 9-1-1 and the customer was taken to the hospital. Another patron, Blair River, age 29 was known as the Grill's "Gentle Giant" and described as an unofficial spokesman and regular patron. He died of flu-related pneumonia in March 2011. In February 2013, a second unofficial spokesman and daily patron, 52-year-old John Alleman, died of an apparent heart attack while waiting at a bus stop in front of the Las Vegas restaurant. Other similar incidents include on April 21, 2012, when a woman fell unconscious while eating a Double Bypass Burger, drinking alcohol and smoking.
The Heart Attack Grill menu consists of eight burger varieties based on number of half-pound patties: the "Single Bypass Burger," the "Double Bypass Burger," the "Triple Bypass Burger,", the "Quadruple Bypass Burger.", the "Quintuple Bypass Burger.", the "Sextuple Bypass Burger.", the "Septuple Bypass Burger." and the "Octuple Bypass Burger." Each of the burgers can be augmented with "unadulterated" (not drained of the grease from cooking) bacon slices in quantities of five slices per patty, thus five slices of bacon on the Single Bypass, ten slices on the Double Bypass, 15 slices on the Triple Bypass, and 20 slices of bacon on the Quadruple Bypass Burger and so-on. All burgers are served, per patty, with a slice of American cheese, red onion, sliced tomato, and Heart Attack Grill's own unique special sauce.
The only available side item is "Flatliner Fries," fresh French-cut potatoes deep fried in pure lard. Heart Attack Grill also offers "Butter-fat Shakes" in vanilla, chocolate and strawberry flavors. This high calorie shake is so named because it is made from butter fat cream. Various packaged candies are also available as dessert items, most notably the controversial candy cigarette.
For refreshment, high sugar content sodas are available as well as bottled water and several brands of malt liquor and beers served in the can. There is also a full bar which, in keeping with the theme, serves FAT bastard wines and liquor shots served in four ounce novelty syringes.
The Quadruple Bypass Burger with 9,982 calories (41.76 MJ) has been identified as one of the "world's worst junk foods". It consists of four half-pound beef patties, twenty strips of bacon, eight slices of American cheese, a whole tomato and half an onion served in a bun coated with lard.
The restaurant was featured on an episode of Extreme Pig-outs on the Travel Channel, All You Can Eat on the The History Channel, World's Weirdest Restaurants on Food Network Canada, ABC News, and on a CBS report with Bill Geist.
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- Phoenix News Times — Heart Attack Grill's Quadruple Bypass Burger Challenge
- Heart Attack Grill, Where a Burger is 8,000 Calories and the Fries are Cooked in Lard
- Nightline from ABC News: The Heart Attack Grill http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hqf_SIQ3JAk
- CBS. November 25, 2008. A Meal To Die For on YouTube.