Sometimes, it’s not just about satiating your hunger. You simply want more, even more so when your city conspires in your favour in catching up with culinary fads. Brace up folks as several ice cream parlours and snack joints have unleashed some ‘monsters’ in town in the delectable form of colossal shakes and Goliath burgers that make their jumbo presence felt on your table.
Though, traditionally shakes and burgers serve as tempting instant coolers and quick-eat snacks for that burst of energy on a weary day for many, their monstrous cousins are no mere small-time hunger-smotherers. Take for instance Ghost Burger at The Brickhouse Oven on Technopark campus that sandwiches layers of chicken and veg patties, all infused with a spicy edge, thanks to the twin effect of piri piri and barbecue sauce. Weighing around half a kg, the big boy’s definitely not a pushover.
“After our Monster Brickhouse Oven Burger became a big hit, we wanted to try out more varieties. We were inspired by the heavy pound burgers widely popular in the US. Since we Malayalis never shy away from a food war, the Ghost was introduced,” says Vysakh R, proprietor. Their Monster burger packs in a double chicken patty, fried eggs, chicken sausage, lettuce, cocktail sauce and the ubiquitous onion and tomato.
For Shabeer Sharafudeen, proprietor of Antarctica — Juice Bar and Burger Land at Plamoodu, ushering in monster shakes and faloodas and tower burgers was “an experiment with something new” when he opened the place late last year. Here, we get to dig in into Double Chunks, Triple Chunks and the signature Tower burger, depending on the number of patties stacked up.
“We use only beef patties and throw in bacon strips as well for a meatier flavour for our burgers, though bacon is optional. Buns are directly sourced from The Pinroll (bakery) to maintain consistency of quality and taste,” adds Shabeer. Exotic ones such as Blueberry and Dairy milk monster shakes and its signature towering Titanic falooda find many takers.
At the Dutch-themed Turf Cafe near Kazhakkoottam, depending on the “level” of appetite, one can shape-shift to be a Toddler or Human or Monster, the three categories of burgers on offer. With almost all of the ingredients made in-house, except for beef bacon strips that are sourced from Mumbai, Turf endeavours to keep their burgers as meaty as possible.
“Among the monsters, we have three — Jurassic Turf, Royal Dutch and Beef Chief. While Jurassic Turf and a kimchi sauce-fuelled Beef Chief wedges in two pieces each of four-ounce patties to allow for a burst of flavours in between, Royal Dutch lets you chomp on an eight-ounce single piece patty for a succulent meat treat,” says Sarith Shersha, its proprietor.
On the shakes front, their speciality is a large glass of S’mores based primarily on marshmallows, again made in-house. Other varieties include Vanilla Malt, Double Chocolate and the standard Strawberry monster milkshakes, all made using Baskin Robbins ice cream.
Though understandably the thrust is on meat in the monster burger market, there’s cause for cheer for hardcore vegetarians too. Apart from its regular Chicken Monster, SFC Plus at Vazhuthacaud brings you Veg Monster to tickle your taste-buds over some classic veg patty made of potato, green peas, corn and the likes.
If chocolates are your thing, head to Dessi Cuppa at Pattom for some safe overdose. Flavour customisation is one cool option here and you get to choose as base for your ice-cold monster beverage either Belgium chocolate, Ferrero Rocher, Oreo and the irresistible nutella, all topped by many-hued sugar sprinkles and edible decorations like chocolate sauce, waffles and choco sticks, points out Sanju S Nair, proprietor of the diner in the heart of the city. Their “semi-monster” Signature Burger eschews patty to make way for a large KFC Zinger-style chicken piece that goes through some spicy marination before ending up sandwiched between the bun slices.
Four months after launching his juice bar, Sandeep Kumar S felt the need to shake things up to redouble his business. The proprietor of Eggs & Co. at Karamana realised the cool way to go about it was through “the eyes of the beholder.” He introduced a slew of monster shakes that has since become quite a hit. With close to 25 varieties on the menu, one’s spoilt for choice between the usual suspects and the more exotic and inventive flavours such as custard, banana ginger, lemon candy (yes naranga mittai) and pina colada to list a delicious few. “Customers should not complain that it was less but rather more,” says Sandeep with a laugh.
Forget the fancy nomenclature. Say you are a purist even with your choice of milkshakes, Cafe TVM near DPI Junction may help you relish some evergreen favourites like choco, vanilla, strawberry and caramel. “We use four scoops of ice cream, 200 ml cold milk and top them with two scoops of ice cream which is further topped by syrup and wafers in our monster shakes,” says Nijumuddin Abdul Latheef, a chef at the juice cafe.
So, who’s game to tame some monsters now?