The Pizzle Takes Las Vegas: The Heart Attack Grill is Actually Trying to Kill You

My very second post on this website was an essay called Something to Eat.

It was a hilarious piece. By hilarious, I mean, it made people cry and not in the funny way. Basically, I decided one day to get up and leave Chicago without knowing where I was going, and the resulting trip made me feel a little better about my life being a hot pile of fermented bull semen.

My mental batteries have been low, so last weekend, I made a split-second decision and decided to take another impromptu trip. A friend of The Pizzle, Davida (you may remember her from the Scope mouthwash cocktail post), invited me to hang out with her in Las Vegas, and much to her delight (chagrin), I blindsided her and took her up on the offer. Surprise! I guess I’m a slightly impulsive person, but I mean, considering we’re talking about the colossal jackass who just inhaled a bunch of vaporized vodka, buying a cheap vacation package from a travel deal site and hopping on a plane actually seems a little normal for once.

Here is one thing I learned: Do not book a room at the legendary Circus Circus. The reason why it is legendary is because it has some of the best one star reviews I’ve ever seen on Yelp, including people getting robbed within their hotel rooms, bedbug infestations, and this picture:

Yes, that is soap stuck to the wall and ceiling of the shower, courtesy of this Yelp review.

Good thing I booked the trip before I looked at the hotel reviews. When I checked in, the hotel lobby was a zoo of drunken adults and screaming children. My eyes grew rounder as I scanned the room, and I leaned over the desk and whispered, “Is there anything I can do, to like, upgrade my room?”

The hotel clerk looked at me, sporting a tired customer service smile. “It’s $10 per night to upgrade.” She looked around, moved in, and hissed, “Do it. Trust me. You’re doing the right thing. You have no idea.” I gave her a wordless nod while I clutched my bag to my chest. My savior upgraded me to a quiet room in a tower and threw me a look that said, good luck.

The first thing I did when I got to my room was peek at the shower, but much to my disappointment, there was no soap stuck to the ceiling of the shower.

Heart Attack Exterior

Like any good friend eager to show me the door to the sweet hereafter, Davida had a suggestion for a wacky place for me to visit in downtown Las Vegas called Heart Attack Grill.

Naturally, I forced Davida to come with me too, because if I was going to die of a heart attack I wasn’t going to go down by myself. As you can see, their marquee proudly states, “Over 350 lbs Eats Free.” Clearly an auspicious start.

If you guys didn’t know, in one of my previous stints as a food writer over at Serious Eats, I reviewed burgers in the Chicago section of A Hamburger Today (you can see a bunch at that last link). So at this point, you can consider me an expert. Never trust anyone who calls themselves an expert. Because trust me, I’m an expert.

One thing I’ve never done before is reviewed a hamburger restaurant where people actually diedAccording to Grubstreet, multiple patrons have suffered heart attacks at the restaurant, and one died just outside the property while waiting for a bus.

Heart Attack Highest Calorie

Is a 9,982 calorie burger really something to brag about?

Even I, the leading human consumer of pet food, couldn’t help but feel sad about this place.

Heart Attack Hospital Gown

Every patron who comes in through those front doors is forced to wear a hospital gown.

For real.

Heart Attack Hospital Gown Me

See?

All the servers are dressed up in skimpy nurse outfits and put the gown on you. I requested to be naked underneath mine so the paramedics wouldn’t have to cut my clothes off later, but the nurse thought I was joking.

Heart Attack Hospital Gown Davida

Davida looked much better in her gown than I did.

We mentally prepared ourselves for a myocardial infarction, held our collective breath, and tiptoed into what might have been our final resting place.

Heart Attack Interior

Heart Attack Grill looks like a T.G.I. Fridays that is suffering from withdrawals from high-grade methamphetamines. 

Not that I’d know what that’s like, or anything.

Heart Attack Eat Free

Yikes.

At first I thought this whole 350 pound thing was a joke until I saw what happened next.

Heart Attack Guy

There’s a giant scale inside that displays people’s weight to the entire dining room.

This gentleman is in the process of stepping off the scale in this picture, but he was well over 350 pounds and received a free meal because of it. People clapped.

Heart Attack Prescription

Alcohol comes in prescription pill bottles at Heart Attack Grill, probably to help you forget that you’re actually at this place.

This is what Guy Fieri’s dreams are made of. Actually, no, wait. It’s this:

I feel you, Guy.

I feel you.

Heart Attack Whiskey

The healthiest way to deal with regret is with alcohol.

Pepper the Raccoon made a special appearance alongside Harvey and Mr. Bee. He’s a pretty cool guy. These are the beady little eyes of three creatures ready to see me carted out of a restaurant on a gurney, lifeless.

I could hear them all whispering about trying to move into Mike Tyson’s mansion after I died. Mike Tyson lives in Las Vegas. I bet his house is paradise.

Heart Attack Menu Burgers

The largest burger you can get is the octuple bypass burger, which has eight patties, cheese, tomato, onion, and chili.

Your add-on option is 40 slices of bacon. 40. That’s like a dump truck full of bacon.

Heart Attack Server

In the end, Davida and I decided to order a couple burgers (a Single Bypass for her, and a Double Bypass with bacon for me), some Flatliner Fries (cooked in pure lard), Flatliner Fries with chili and cheese, and a chocolate milkshake with a shitload of butterfat in it.

My mother is a nurse. This is a sexual fantasy I cannot get behind.

Unless it’s your father wearing a nurse outfit.

Heart Attack Double

Mr. Bee was adventurous and decided to get up close and personal with the burger. 

They were pissed that I didn’t order the octuple.

Heart Attack Attempt to Eat

I unhinged my jaw and took a giant bite.

Check out my finesse. My blank expression. And my double chin.

Heart Attack Autopsy

I can’t say this burger is actually any good.

The patties have a decent coarse grind to them, but they’re overcooked to the point of being gray, dry, and chewy throughout. Most of the bacon is crisp, but it’s simply there to kill you faster. The bun fell apart rather quickly. But, you guys know I’m stupid and I kept eating it anyway.

Heart Attack Lard Fries

Are fries cooked in lard any good?

These aren’t particularly great. They’re undersalted and flaccid (just like your father’s schlong), though the lard did add somewhat of a savory flavor that I would say is reminiscent of sweaty testicles.

Heart Attack Diarrhea Fries

I could only take down a few bites of the diarrhea fries before I called it quits on those too.

It’s less of a chili and more of a finely ground meat sludge. The processed American cheese adds more death to the fries.

Heart Attack Milkshake

The milkshake looks exactly like a poo emoji. 💩

I can’t believe I used an emoji in one of my very professional blog posts. Here. Have some more.

💩

💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩

💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩

💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩💩

For better or for worse, the chocolate milkshake was delicious and rich, with the silky texture of frozen custard. I hate that we liked it, but we barely got through more than a few spoonfuls of it because it was too much. Davida pointed out the actual pat of butter they put on top of the shake as garnish.

Heart Attack Post Shot

We finished off the meal with the classic French digestif, the jello shot.

It came in a giant syringe. Davida was a champ and destroyed that thing in one go. That shit-eating grin you see on my face was me realizing I should have just crammed the whole thing up my ass instead. Now, reread that last sentence and think about the fact that I am an actual published food writer in magazines, newspapers, and websites.

Heart Attack Ouch

Well, unbeknownst to me, if you don’t finish your meal, you might get a paddling from one of the nurses.

I thought nurses were supposed to make you feel better, not worse. My nurse smacked the living shit out of my right buttcheek twice before I asked her to move onto the other one. I could barely walk afterwards. Anyway, it was the best day of my life.

Heart Attack Trump Urinal

The food might not have been very good, but at least I got to pee on Donald Trump’s face in the bathroom. 

I learned that if you are in a restaurant bathroom taking photos of a urinal, people will look at you very strangely, especially if you are laughing the whole time. If I had to sum up my experience at Heart Attack Grill, it’d be that I got to pee on Donald Trump’s face, and we all know how I feel about him.

I’d like to extend a special thanks to Davida for being my companion in Las Vegas, and for being so wonderful to someone she met for the first time. It was one of the best weekends I’ve had in years, if not ever, and all because I decided to jump on an airplane at the last second to come visit someone new. I should be impulsive more often. I’m still smiling now, so thanks a million, Davida ().

Don’t worry. To make up for lunch, we went to Bouchon by Thomas Keller for dinner. And it was perfect.

[Final note: Thank you, everyone, for continuing to donate to the site. It’s still happening, and every time it does, I’m still awestruck that you’d send money to some idiot who writes about eating bull dicks. Who knows? I might just come visit you someday too.]

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  17 comments for “The Pizzle Takes Las Vegas: The Heart Attack Grill is Actually Trying to Kill You

  1. June 7, 2016 at 11:22 AM

    Hell, I’d go just for the spankings! (I am supposed to go to Vegas in August for a bachelor party, but I really just want to shoot automatic weapons.)

    Also, if you think that Circus Circus is bad, you should check out the one in Reno.*

    * – no, you should not go to Reno. No one should ever go to Reno. Also, all you can eat sushi after 10 PM when you’ve been drinking all day is a TERRIBLE idea to do in a casino in Reno.

    (PS Davida has an awesome Twitter handle.)

    • Dennis Lee
      June 10, 2016 at 11:36 AM

      Davida is wonderful. I love her. Maybe you could shoot at different kind of food and tell us which bullet fragments taste best.

  2. David
    June 7, 2016 at 2:50 PM

    They have those here in Phoenix, but they also have In N Out and lots of other places with actual good food. I see no reason to ever go to that place. Other than the jello shots and paddling.

    • Dennis Lee
      June 10, 2016 at 11:36 AM

      So if I’m reading this correctly, you’d still go here.

  3. Allison
    June 8, 2016 at 9:50 AM

    I always thought this place was made up. Like, pretend. Thank you, Dannis Ree, for doing the hard work that the rest of us might, um, not.

    • Dennis Lee
      June 10, 2016 at 11:37 AM

      Just because a place is legendary doesn’t mean it’s made up, Allison. It’s like the Albion of messed up burger places.

  4. Neurozach
    June 8, 2016 at 5:36 PM

    Shit, you were a mere five-hour drive away!

    • Dennis Lee
      June 10, 2016 at 11:38 AM

      Next time! I will let you know if I am in the 20-hour-drive vicinity.

      • Neurozach
        June 11, 2016 at 11:13 PM

        You may be joking, but I don’t mind a road trip, so long as it doesn’t interfere with work. Northern Arizona.

  5. KM
    June 8, 2016 at 11:46 PM

    I went to the Circus Circus in Reno when I was 8 or 9. My friend and I spent the entire time convinced a clown was going to climb up through the toilet at night and murder us. We may not have been that far off the mark.

    • Dennis Lee
      June 10, 2016 at 11:39 AM

      It was actually soap. Soap was going to climb up through the toilet and stick to your faces.

  6. Emily
    June 9, 2016 at 2:02 PM

    People actually get on that scale in front of everybody to get a free meal? What kind of sick-ass combo of self-regard and self-loathing would you have to have to… I have to go lie down.

    • Dennis Lee
      June 10, 2016 at 11:39 AM

      I felt pretty sad about the whole thing. They both celebrated it and didn’t.

      • Emily
        June 10, 2016 at 12:26 PM

        On the other hand, if I’m ever entertaining a foreign friend whom I think would derive pleasure from having all their stereotypes about Americans confirmed in the most delightful way, I now know where to take them. USA! USA! USA!

  7. June 14, 2016 at 5:37 PM

    This is very nice

    • Dennis Lee
      June 14, 2016 at 6:26 PM

      I’m a really cool dude

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