If you really love eating pizza – really, really love it – you might want to grab a friend and set your sights on the Magnum Challenge.
Chick-N-Pizza Works sells one of the biggest pizzas around – 29 inches across – at its two locations (129 Abbott Road, 823-1300, and 2940 Union Road, Cheektowaga, 683-2750).
Owner John Fortini said the outsized pie’s birth was the result of a mistake. It was 1986, and his father ordered an 18-inch conveyor oven and got a 36-incher by mistake. He decided to keep it and had a machinist friend craft a pizza pan for it from anodized aluminum.
It was dubbed the Magnum. Cut into 44 pieces, it was just a tad smaller than two sheet pizzas.
Then Fortini started the Magnum Challenge. Bring a friend and take on the Magnum cheese-and-one-topping pie ($34.50 for cheese and pepperoni), and if you can eat the entire thing in an hour, with no restroom breaks, it’s free. Plus the champions get $50 in store credit, for the next time they’re hungry. (The challenge is only available in Cheektowaga, as the Buffalo store has no dining room.)
So far, out of about 25 teams that have tackled the challenge, only one has prevailed, Fortini said.
“He came from Wisconsin, a professional eater,” said Fortini. “Him and his partner came in and ate the pizza. The other kid didn’t eat too much.”
– Andrew Z. Galarneau