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11 Ga. restaurants where your meal is free (if you can eat it all)

A previous version of this story included Bigshow Burger in Statesboro, now permanently closed.

There are few things better than a free meal. We're not saying it will be easy, but check out these 11 Georgia restaurants where your meal is actually free if you finish it all up.

1. The Brett's Beast Burger Challenge - 3190 Atlanta Hwy #11, Athens

Price: $40

 You've got one hour to devour a huge 6-pound patty with several toppings served between a giant bun. If you win, not only is your meal free, but you're officially a member of Brett's Casual American's Wall of Fame.

2. The Cannon Brew Pub's Turning Blue Burger Challenge, 1041 Broadway Rd, Columbus

Price: $30

30 minutes to devour three burger patties, three slices of cheese, eight strips of bacon – all served with chili cheese fries. If you win, you go home as a newly inducted member of  The Cannon Brew Pub's Wall of Fame, with a free t-shirt and of course, a free meal.

3. Bearfoot Tavern's Bear Mace Wing Challenge, 401 Cherry St, Macon

Price: $10

Here's the challenge: Gobble up 12 wings in 15 minutes. If you think that sounds pretty easy, you should know that eating these wings has been described like feeling like you're actually being maced. If you survive, you get to go home with a free meal, hat and beer and you're automatically inducted into Bearfoot Tavern's Wall of Fame. 

4. Mazey's 3lb Hamburger Eating Challenge and Mazey's Spicy Wing Eating Challenge, 105 Marie Church Rd, Dublin

Hamburger challenge: $25; Wing challenge: $18

Can you eat a three-pound burger topped with several toppings and two pounds of fries in under 40 minutes? How about 10 wings in under 20 minutes — with your fingers licked clean and the remaining hot sauce nowhere to be seen? If you win, your meal is on Mazey's Restaurant and you go home with a t-shirt. 

5. The Peach Pit's Quad Burger Challenge, 2505D Plant Ave, Waycross

Price: $25

Not only will you get a free meal and leave a newly inducted member of The Peach Pit's Wall of Fame, the winner of the challenge also gets to leave with $75 cash. All you have to do is eat a 10-inch, 4-pound burger loaded with toppings and another pound of fries — all in one sitting.

6. Cheeky's No Way Jose Burrito Challenge, 4475 Roswell Rd #1510, Marietta

Price: $30

Devour a 7-pound 2-foot burrito in one sitting and your meal as a proud new member of Cheeky Mexican Restaurant's Wall of Fame is free. 

7. B&D's Bring it on Burger Challenge, 13 E Broughton St, Savannah

Price: $35

You have 35 minutes to eat up three 1-pound patties with veggies and a pound of fries if you want to go home with your picture on B&D Burgers Bar & Grill's Wall of Fame, a free t-shirt and of course, your meal paid for.

8. The Square Pub's T-Rex Burger Challenge, 115 Sycamore St, Decatur

Price: $30

All you need to do is eat a stacked burger with three layers of beef (and toppings) served with cheesy tater tots. If you can do this in under 30 minutes, your meal is on the house at The Square Pub and you're now a newly inducted member of the restaurant's Wall of Fame.

9. Big Pie in the Sky's 30-inch Carnivore Pizza Challenge, 2090 Baker Rd A-103, Kennesaw

Price: $50

Don't worry, you don't have to devour this 30-inch gigantic pizza all by yourself. You can bring a friend to help. The pizza weighs 11 pounds and is loaded with meat toppings. If you and your friend win, not only is your meal free and your picture on Big Pie in the Sky's Wall of Fame, you win a whopping $250 cash prize to share.

10. The So Ba Pho King Challenge, 560 Gresham Ave, Atlanta

Price: $25

Eat two pounds of meat, another two pounds of noodles and yet another two pounds of broth with vegetables in under one hour and you get a paid meal, free t-shirt, picture on So Ba Vietnamese Restaurant's Wall of Fame and a $100 gift card.

11. The 2' Big Easy Grille "Not So Easy" Sandwich Challenge, 1193 Collier Rd NE, Atlanta

Price: $65

You have one hour to eat a sandwich two feet long loaded with meats and toppings and three small sides if you want your free meal, a free t-shirt and the pride that goes along with your picture on Big Easy Grille & Bar's Wall of Fame.

Barnes and Noble to open restaurants, serve alcohol

Barnes & Noble is merging books and booze to save its book business.

The bookseller is opening four concept stores around the U.S. that will feature full restaurants that sell beer and wine.

>> Read more trending stories  

Barnes & Noble already has Starbucks cafes in most of its bookstores, but the new restaurants will feature breakfast, lunch and dinner menus, and a server will take your order.

The first store will open in Eastchester, New York, in October. The three other stores will be in Edina, Minnesota; Folsom, California; and Loudoun County, Virginia, Fortune reported.

The head of the project said it was about creating "a better bookstore" that drives traffic to the store and keeps people there longer.

The company has faced slumping sales recently thanks to people turning to online retailers, like Amazon, to buy books. Its sales fell .8 percent last quarter.

The company's Nook devices and e-book business aren't performing well either. Nook's market share is at 9 percent after it held 27 percent in 2011.

<iframe width="390" height="219" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZDPBuyW6c_k" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

This video includes clips from StarbucksAmazon and Barnes & Noble, and images from Getty Images.

Taco Bell offering free tacos on Tuesday

Taco Bell announced today it would offer one free Doritos Locos taco to customers on Tuesday afternoon, June 21, as part of the restaurant chain’s “Steal a Game, Steal a Taco” NBA promotion.

The special offer will run from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday only. Taco Bell had announced prior to the NBA Finals that it would give away Doritos Locos tacos if a team won on its opponent’s home court in the NBA Finals — and that ended up happening not once, but three times, with the Golden State Warriors winning Game 4 in Cleveland, then the Cavaliers winning Games 5 and 7 on Golden State’s home court.

No purchase is necessary, according to the promotion’s terms and conditions, and as always, the offer will be good at participating Taco Bell locations. There is, of course, a limit of one free taco per customer.

12 things you didn't know about Waffle House

The soft glow from Waffle House’s black and yellow sign has been beckoning hungry travelers to stop, rest and dine for over 60 years.

>> Read more trending stories  

For many people, including Anthony Bourdain, eating at the restaurant is a unique experience. But if you think you know everything about the restaurant chain, think again.

Even the most devoted WaHo patrons may be surprised with these unusual facts about the company.

1. In a year, Waffle House serves 25,000 miles of bacon. If you laid out all the Smithfield Bacon that Waffle House serves in one year end-to-end, it would wrap around the earth’s equator. That’s a lot of miles of greasy goodness.

2. Waffle House has its own music label. The yellow-roofed restaurant has been concocting its recipes since 1955, but it began creating its own music 30 years ago. If you scroll through any Waffle House jukebox, there’s 40 original Waffle House songs. Hard to believe? Well, listen to one of Waffle House’s hits entitled “There are Raisins in My Toast.” WaHo’s musical playlist doesn’t stop there. The franchise has also dipped its toes into the syrupy waters of Gospel music.

3. School buses inspired the restaurant’s color scheme. Co-founderJoeRogers Senior picked the colors yellow and black because it reminded him of a school bus. He thought it would increase the restaurant’s visibility to drivers. It’s a common misconception that the founders chose the colors because Joe was a graduate from Georgia Institute of Technology, whose official colors are yellow and black.

4. FEMA has a Waffle House Index. Waffle House takes its commitment to being open 24/7 seriously. If disaster strikes, the chain has its own disaster management plan, which includes buying portable food generators, ice and food in advance. One of the first places the Federal Emergency Management Agency turns to gauge a natural disaster’s severity is Waffle House --it’s called the Waffle House Index

5. Waffle House has its own merchandise! You can purchase anything ranging from a WaHo hoodie to a vintage neon Waffle House clock on the restaurant’s website.

6. Valentine’s Day at Waffle House is a big deal. For the past eight years or so, designated Waffle Houses have organized romantic candle-lit dinners for couples on Valentine’s Day. The idea began in Johns Creek, Georgia, but now over 150 restaurant locations participate.

7. Waffle House has a unique call-in system. Have you ever noticed that colored tile on a Waffle House’s restaurant floor? Well, sale associates are instructed to stand on the colored tile when calling in an order. That way, the person working on the grill can easily hear the order.

8. The support team spends one day a year working in the restaurant. Although Waffle House’s support team isn’t involved in the day-to-day operations of the restaurant, team members -- who work in Waffle House's corporate offices -- spend one day of the year working inside the restaurant. 

9. Waffle House is named after its most expensive menu item. Waffle House’s original menu had 16 items on it, and its most expensive menu item was the waffle. The founders named the restaurant after the waffle because they thought it would generate a big profit.

10. The restaurant’s founders still stop by to visit. The company’s founders, Tom Forkner and Joe Rogers Sr., are both in their late 90’s and are still involved with their brand. Tom visits the company’s headquarters three times a week. Joe, who is unable to drive, calls to check in on the company two or three times a month.

11. The menu items are named after real people. Bert’s Chili was named after an employee who served at the company for over 30 years. Alice’s iced tea was also named after an employee who helped perfect the restaurant’s signature iced tea. 

12. The restaurant had a cash-only policy until 2006. Waffle House resisted using credit cards because management feared that it would interfere with its promised 20-minute turnaround time. Also, the chain had to update it system to take credit cards. 

Have you always wondered what Waffle House order you would be? Take this quiz to find out!  

Deals and freebies for National Doughnut Day

British restaurant owner gets 6 years for killing man with curry

An owner of an Indian restaurant in North Yorkshire, England, was sentenced to six years in prison after he served a curry dish containing peanuts to a customer with an allergy, resulting in his death.

>> Read more trending stories  

Mohammaed Zaman was sentenced Monday after being found guilty of manslaughter by gross negligence among other food-safety offenses, The New York Times reported. The incident happened in January 2014 when Paul Wilson, 38, ordered chicken tikka masala from Zaman’s restaurant, Indian Garden, and specified he couldn’t have any nuts in his order.

Wilson had visited the restaurant previously and was given a container with "no nuts" written on top of it, the Times added.

He was found by a roommate dead after going into anaphylactic shock, prosecutors said.

According to authorities, Zaman cut corners by replacing almond powder in his recipes with a cheaper mix of groundnuts and hired undocumented workers to put together his curry dishes. There was an incident with another customer with a nut allergy three weeks before Wilson’s death.

"Time and again he ignored the danger and did not protect his customers," Richard Wright, told a jury at Teesside Crown Court, according to the Times.

Zaman had about $434,000 in debt, which led to his cutting corners, the Times reported. He also had a tendency to not be at the restaurant, allowing his employees to run the operations, and was not there when the curry was served to Wilson.

"Paul Wilson was in the prime of his life," Judge Simon Bourne-Arton told Zaman, according to the Yorkshire Post. "He, like you, worked in the catering trade. He, unlike you, was a careful man."

Read more at The New York Times.

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