“It’s getting hot in here…so take off all your clothes…”
Wait no, don’t! You’re in Hard Rock Cafe and it’s illegal.
But whilst we’re here getting hot under the collar, why not have a try of their latest limited edition menu?
To honour National Chilli Day, Hard Rock Cafe has unveiled the return of the Red Hot Chilli Menu, to be devoured exclusively to thrill seekers across the globe – and more locally, at their Manchester location up until Sunday 26th February.
I was invited to try the tantalising trio of treats on National Chilli Day itself, and was more than excited to get stuck in (with a pint of milk on stand-by for when I inevitably wimped out).
We were greeted by our friendly Irish server for the evening; Sadhbh (“It’s pronounced like Five but with an S!”) Who was incidentally nothing short of a joy and had a feast of knowledge of the creations we were about to consume.
We sat down, cracked our knuckles and ordered an abundance of sour cream side as a precaution.
First up came the Atomic Chicken Wings.
Piled up high on the plate, you really get your bang for your buck with these guys; the wings glisten in succulence from the scotch bonnet marinade and arrive still sizzling, fresh straight from the griddle.
I picked up my first wing, and got to work.
Nibbling away at its spicy armour; the fiendish coating packs a hell o’ heat but doesn’t detract from the tantilising flavour which infuses the mild juicy meat to perfection.
Be sure to dip in the blue cheese sauce to make these bad boys even more wickedly naughty.
The perfect way to prep your tastebuds, or great for a nibble if you can’t stomach the whole menu – order a round of these with a pitcher of beer and trust me, you’ll polish off the little beasts in no time.
Next up came the Nduja Chilli Burger. A wicked temptress which has overhauled the famous classic Hard Rock burger with the inclusion of spicy Italian nduja sausage and three bean chilli. Add a creamy queso sauce and scotch bonnet salsa, and you have yourself a bun-full o’ glory, deliciousy messy and devilishly moreish.
Taking that first decadent bite of burg, I was welcomed by a juicy and meaty bite of Angus Beef patty and handsome flavours from the three bean chilli.
The chilli gives the burger a new taste dimension, incorporating deep, rich and slightly spicy tangs which sink effortlessly into the soft brioche bun for a flavour train that’s simply impossible to put down, (seriously, we tried).
The only addition I might add to the burger would be a layer of sweet tomato relish to provide an extra contrast to the savoury flavours, but hey – that could just be my greediness talking.
Upgrade your side of fries to Atomic, Parmesan or Garlic Herb, seriously – you can’t go wrong.
All courses were complimented perfectly by Hard Rock’s ingenious creation of a refreshing Apple Chilli Martini; a vodka based cocktail with a fresh green apple bite and a surprising but delicate chilli kiss – undoubtedly my new favourite cocktail.
I Quite unbelievably stuffed, but wonderfully so, we welcomed the final hurrah of Hard Rock’s spicy selection; the Chilli Molten Lava Cake.
Truly a work of consumable art, this baby is sure to please dessert-lovers everywhere.
Adopting a harmless facade from the outside, I cautiously dipped my spoon into the soft chocolatey sponge, only to allow oozes of rich, thick sauce spill out onto the plate like hot molten lava.
Served warm, this naughty little thing is eye-rollingly rich and full of gooey, melted goodness. The chilli goes almost unnoticed until you swipe an oozy spoonful through the pool of compote which adds the cutest little kick of spice to your mouthful.
Decadent and wonderfully satisfying, right down to the last crumb.
Hard Rock’s Red Hot Chilli Menu won’t be around for long, ending on Sunday 26th February, I cannot urge you enough to go and give it a try.
If spice isn’t quite up your street, I can confidently promise you’ll still enjoy every scotch-bonnet-bite. Speaking as a total wuss when it comes to anything with a little heat (my eyes have been known to water at Chilli Heatwave Doritos), I was pleasantly surprised as to how well I handled these little hotties (you just might need extra helpings of that addictive blue cheese sauce to see you the whole way through…)
So what are you waiting for? Go catch it while you cayenne!