Food challenges and competitions are continuing to thrive throughout the country, and Washington, D.C. , is no different. Indeed, there’s a host of D.C.-area food challenges that can delight and torment any interested gastronomic warrior. Here are three of the most-well known and daunting of the bunch.

Chick & Ruth ‘s Delly: “The Man vs. Food Challenge “

Made famous by the Travel Channel series “Man vs. Food”, the restaurant now features four separate challenges, headlined by the beast that host Adam Richman took on. Originally called the Colossal Challenge, it’s now appropriately known as the Man vs. Food Challenge. It consists of a ridiculous combination of a six-pound milkshake and a one and a half-pound sandwich or one-pound burger.

Slightly less brave or insane souls can take on just the six-pound shake, a three-pound sandwich, or a three-pound cheeseburger. All challenges have to be completed in one hour and one sitting by one person. Winners get a T-shirt and a picture on the restaurant’s website.

Chick & Ruth’s Delly is located at 165 Main St. in Annapolis, Maryland . You can head online to to view their food challenge options and previous winners.

BGR: The Burger Joint: “The 9 Pounder”

At BGR, a D.C.-based chain of burger shops, restaurant goers will find The 9 Pounder on the menu. This monstrous burger has been featured on both The Travel Channel and Food Network in the past, and its full weight is actually 15.4 pounds, including the bun and condiments.

It includes two full heads of lettuce, eight whole tomatoes, and much more, and, oh yes, it comes with a bottle of Maalox. If one person finishes it on his own, it’s free, but it’s meant to feed groups of 10-15 people at a sitting. The restaurant asks for 24 hours notice if you plan on coming down and giving it a try.

BGR has nine locations in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C., and can be found online at

Ben’s Chili Bowl : World Chili Eating Championship

The inaugural Ben’s Chili Bowl World Chili Eating Championship was held in October 2011 at the Taste of D.C. festival. With $3,000 up for grabs, the venerable D.C. institution prepared 30 pounds of chili for the competition.

The winner was the famous competitive eater Joey Chestnut, who downed some two gallons of the good stuff in six minutes and was able to outdo Alexandria resident Sonya Thomas, known as The Black Widow. As if Ben’s Chili Bowl wasn’t busy enough, even larger crowds are certain to flock down to the U Street landmark to take on heaping bowls of chili.

Ben’s Chili Bowl is located at 1213 U St. in Washington, D.C. They also have a concession stand at Nationals Park, and more information can be found online at

This article was first published by Jake Emen on Yahoo! News on October 11, 2011