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Adventures in Gluttony: "The Dobranski" is Born at First Food and Bar

Some boys look up at a clear night’s sky and imagine how someday they’ll walk on the moon’s surface. Generous philanthropists have hospital wings built in their name in recognition of their efforts to heal the sick and save the lives of thousands.  Monuments have been erected to honor men that have sacrificed all they had to bring peace to the world they loved so much.


I’ve always wanted a sandwich to be named after me.

"The Dobranski" at First Food and Bar

"The Dobranski" at First Food and Bar

Ever since I first wondered, “Who the hell is Reuben?”, my life’s long goal was to have a sandwich named after me. On February 18, 2010, my main purpose for living was realized as First Food and Bar at the Palazzo resort decreed their massive Double Loaded Bacon Cheeseburger; “The Dobranski.”

It all started one evening when I saw a picture of the beautiful monstrosity posted on First Food and Bar’s Facebook page.  It was love at first sight.  Offered as a late night special, it sang to me like a Sarah McLachlan SPCA commercial; this burger needed a home, and that home was my belly.

This original edition of the Colossal Burger was a single one-pound beef patty with bacon, American cheese, avocado, tomato, lettuce, onion and 1,000 Island on a 12″ sesame seed bun baked at nearby Bouchon Bakery.  Served with some tasty O-Rings, this burger marked what may be a new era in First’s evolution as a restaurant; massive food.

Walnut Shrimp at First Food and Bar

Walnut Shrimp at First Food and Bar

A frequent late night gorge and libation spot for The Wife, my fellow noise-making colleagues and myself, we ventured over to the Palazzo on the night the burger picture was posted with visions of cholesterol dancing in my head.  There are so many reasons to go to First Food and Bar. We have yet to hit a weak spot on the menu.  Everything from the Philly Cheesesteak Dumplings to the Cucumber Gimlets are a win, and will certainly be more formally reviewed (well, as formal as we get) in the near future.

But on this night, it was all about the burger for me. I got the burger, I ate the burger. Ok…so I also enjoyed a few of my favorite Walnut Shrimp, and some Cinnamon Sugar Donuts…but the burger was the star attraction.  Not thinking much of it other than getting to tell the tale of eating such a monstrosity, I headed home happy, fat and satisfied.

The next morning (my version of morning, a.k.a. – The Crack of Noon), I saw a thank you on First’s Facebook page to everyone who tried the late night burger special.  I commented saying how much I enjoyed it and telling the stories that come along with it, to which First then responded to let me know I was the only person at that time to have finished the burger on my own!  I was ecstatic!  Since I was the only, this means I was also the first!  I could only imagine that Neil Armstrong felt the same wave of pride that washed over me as his feet first touched the lunar surface.

But, the congratulations came with an additional challenge; “Now someone will have to try the DOUBLE patty.”

Double patty, you say? DOUBLE patty?!? Well, certainly no other pig is going to steal my thunder and one up me by throwing another patty on the burger!  I need to get down to First right away and defend my glory!  But not right then. I had a whole bunch of ground beef, cheese and bacon in various parts of my digestive system and I needed some serious recovery time, as did the City of Henderson Municipal Sewage System.

A few days after the online challenge, I got home after “one of those days” at work. Battered and bruised, I looked in The Wife’s sparkly blue eyes and said, “Honey, I’m famished. If this double burger is going to happen, then it is going to happen tonight.”  Not being one to ever turn down First’s French Onion Soup, The Wife went down to The Palazzo with me and we arrived at about 11:30pm on February 17, 2010.

After explaining the Facebook challenge to the late night staff and a quick check to see if  they slaughtered enough pigs and cows to construct the beast, they agreed to make the Double Colossal Burger.

"The Dobranski" Cooking on the Griddle

"The Dobranski" Cooking on the Griddle

When the challenge was issued, I interpreted it as an extra one-pound patty would be added to the existing burger.  The kitchen staff however thought otherwise and doubled the patty, the bacon AND the cheese!  If this was going to be done, it was going to be done right.

One Quick Smile Before The Pain

One Quick Smile Before The Pain

As the burger was set down before me, I could see why cardiologists are so wealthy.  I looked at it knowing that my heart would probably stop after consumption, but it was no matter. My reputation was at stake, and I would rather go down a hero than live as a zero.  Behold, the first bite…

Behold! The First Bite!

Behold! The First Bite!

Where with the single burger I was able to eat it in the traditional hand-grabbing style, this double burger was a knife and fork necessity.  Taking the first bite with my hands purely for photo-op purposes, I got down to business by cutting off sections about 1/5 of the total burger’s size and then eating it.  I burned through about 3/5 of the estimated 5-pound after-cooking total and then I hit the wall.

Cutting Away at "The Dobranski"

Cutting Away at "The Dobranski"

And I mean it. I really hit the wall.  From the first glances of awe, love and affection, my glossy-eyed stare turned to regret, betrayal and defeat. There was a lot of food in my gut, and there was still a lot of food on the table before me. Just as I was telling The Wife that I wasn’t going to make it, a hand tapped me on the shoulder and said there was someone that wanted to meet me.

The Face of Imminent Defeat

The Face of Imminent Defeat

It was Chef Sammy D, chef and owner of First Food and Bar!  Off duty and hanging at nearby Smokin’ Hot Aces, someone must have got him and told him that he had to see this idiot attempt a double burger.  Like the unavoidable attraction to a traffic accident, Chef Sammy D took some time to cheer me on in my quest of supreme gluttony.

The Final Bite!

The Final Bite!

With a renewed confidence and some much needed digestion time as we got to chat a bit with the Chef, I tackled the remains all the way to sweet victory!  An estimated five pounds of sandwich, two and a half of which was estimated to be post-cooking weight of the beef and bacon alone, this burger was now a part of me, for better or for worse.  According to the night manager, I ate it in 40 minutes.  In the spirit of full disclosure, there were a few slices of tomato, onion and lettuce left that fell on the table and I only ate about 5 or 6 of the dozen or so onion rings provided.

Me, A Chef that Sammy Knows, Chef Sammy D, The Wife

Me, A Chef that Sammy Knows, Chef Sammy D, The Wife

With flirtations of having the burger named after me and Chef Sammy D generously comping the delicious heartattack in a bun, it wasn’t until the sun rose and I thankfully woke up alive that I found out the burger was officially named “The Dobranski.” This was it!  My life’s journey finally brought me to my personal promised land of a sandwich named after me!

Just as John Hancock has his Tower in Boston, Christopher Columbus has his Circle in New York City and William H. Seward had his Folly in Alaska; Mike Dobranski now has his Burger in Las Vegas!

Come and Get It, Adam Richman!

Come and Get It, Adam Richman!

Now retired from the Five Pound Bacon Cheeseburger Eating Business while I’m on top, “The Dobranski” is the perfect challenge for Adam Richman and his gluttonous showcase on Man vs. Food.  Adam’s verified Twitter account is at @AdamRichman and Man vs. Food Twitter account is at @ManvFood.  Tweet them incessantly and let them know “The Dobranski” is an epic battle waiting to happen!

Mike with Brian, Deliverer of the Dobranski Burger

Mike with Brian, Deliverer of the Dobranski Burger


First Food and Bar

The Palazzo Resort Hotel Casino
3327 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109

(702) 607-3478

Follow First Food and Bar on Twitter at @FirstFoodandBar

First (Palazzo) on Urbanspoon
Mike Dobranski is a professional musician, amateur blogger, eater of good food, poker junkie, master of the inappropriate comment and bad husband to a wonderful wife. Follow him on Twitter at @MikeDobranski.

Follow Tasting Las Vegas on Twitter at @TastingLasVegas.

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14 comments to Adventures in Gluttony: “The Dobranski” is Born at First Food and Bar

  • Mike, this was an amazing adventure! This story gives me goosebumps as I feel it has was it takes to go National. You documented your burger journey like a true pro. It’s a fascinating read, and because I care about you, I’m glad you are more or less retiring from the super duper burger arena. That’s a lot of beef!! Thanks for a fun, interesting story with a real cool and happy ending. If there ever is another one brave enough to attempt this, it could never be done with your Dobranski style. xo

  • Dan Pattee

    Mike, I am proud to call you my friend. You are a man among boys! Can’t wait to come out again!

  • [...] September 2005  (36) August 2005  (51) July 2005  (13) Mike Dobranski has a blog entry about his attempt to finish the Double Colossal burger at First Food and Bar in Las Vegas, which is [...]

  • Thanks so much everybody! I was so shocked when they said they were going to name the burger after me. Too funny!

    I may have retired from the Five Pound Bacon Cheeseburger Business, but I am always open to the Meatballs, Chicken Wings, Pizza, Sausage and Bacon businesses!

    And yes Dan, I can’t wait for you to come out either! Good times as always!

  • OH!! I am SO PROUD!! YAY!!

    Let’s get Adam there to challenge you. I DARE HIM!!

  • Thanks Lisa! How is La La Land treating you? I should see if they do a gardenburger and fakeon version of this and it can be the Lisa Smolen!

  • [...] for the exclusive things, the special things.  Obviously I’m not one to stray away from the All-American Pig Out from time to time, but it is now the pursuit of the exclusive that my true joy of food is now [...]

  • i am coming to vegas for this.. you want to watch, MikeyD?

  • I’d love to watch, but unfortunately the Size Matters Menu and the Dobranski Burger along with it, is no more. I think they gave the whole portion of the menu the axe about a week or two ago. They might come up with some specials or something every now and then, but for now, the Dobranski Burger is but a distant memory of a great civilization.

  • Mike Dobranski

    I just found out about it, and it’s gone? Yes, my name is Mike Dobranski, though not the one for whom the Great Burger is named. Who knew there is more than one? Though my wife and I were just in Vegas 10 days ago, I was pleading with her to go back. Now I’ll never get the chance to eat the burger named after (not) me…

  • No kidding! I think there’s one of us in Canada and another in Texas. No relation that I know of. The Big Dobranski Burger is now offered every First Friday for those that want to challenge the title. I guess a competitive eater came in this past First Friday and barely got through half of it. I think you can order the single patty, the double which I did, or the challenge is to eat a triple. I don’t think there’s any way that someone is downing a triple, unless it’s like that Kobayashi hot dog dude or something.

  • Mike Dobranski

    OK, we need to have a “Mike Dobranski Meet and Greet”, and attempt the Big Dobranski Burger consumption ritual. I’m definetly contacting you when we can make a First Friday.

    I’m aware of another MD, he’s a math prof. at a Kentucky Univ. Not sure about the one in Canada. Hard to believe, but I found the Big Dobranski Burger while searching for my Aunt who passed away. Hmmmmmmmm.

    Two things I wanna say: 1, we should meet and eat one of those #$%$@ things. How can I stay in touch? 2, You should know that I too have a reputation for making extremely inappropriate comments, often at the worst possible times.

  • Sounds good! Best ways to keep in touch with me are either through Facebook at or Twitter at

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