His name is Mike Longo. He is not Jewish. He is Italian. He once ate four pounds of Italian ice in seven minutes. He is a professional eater — “Munchin Mike,” as he is known on the pro eating circuit.
His name is apparently tougher than his bite.
Munchin Mike, a Woodbridge resident, managed to down only five matzoh balls in eight minutes on Monday at Uptown Deli’s first ever matzoh ball eating contest. The world record (78) is held by Joey Chestnut.
Munchin Mike, one of five contestants, said the matzoh balls Chestnut eventually digested were golf ball size. The matzoh balls at the Bethesda deli are softballish.
“Very dense,” Munchin Mike said, after narrowly edging out Jesse Dymond, a North Potomac non-professional eater. “If they were meatballs, I could have eaten more.”
Until yesterday, a matzoh ball had never seen the inside of Munchin Mike’s mouth. However, he was somewhat familiar with Jewish cuisine; he’s the reigning National Potato Latke Eating champion, having “eaten” 25.9 latkes in eight minutes.
He seemed to think he could have done better with matzoh balls.
“I did enough for the win,” he said.
And for the resulting aches, Munchin Mike took home, among other prizes, a pair of boxer shorts adorned with matzoh images.