The nation’s best eating contest is right here in the District

Experience Z-Burger’s annual Independence Day Burger Eating Championship

What if we told you the best Fourth of July-themed eating competition wasn’t in New York, but right here in the nation’s capital?

In today’s episode of “Matt About Town,” WTOP’s Matt Kaufax brought his buns, and his appetite, over to Z-Burger on Wisconsin Avenue in Northwest D.C., to experience the spectacle of the burger joint’s annual Independence Day Burger Eating Championship!

The competition is in its 15th year and counting, and winners from this year’s contest split $6,000 in prize money. But that number isn’t the one that will baffle you.

Matt spoke with Z-Burger owner Peter Tabibian, who told him the restaurant goes through 5,000 patties — about 500 pounds of beef — on a day like this.

Matt also got a chance to see champion eaters up close, including Maryland resident Molly Schuyler, the No. 1 ranked independent competitive eater in the world.

Despite her small frame, Molly has broken eating records across the U.S., and set her sights on a record 10th Z-Burger championship this year.

Competition was stiff, but as Matt found, the amount of burgers contestants like Molly can eat in 10 minutes will shock you.

Come along with him for the wild ride, and check out his video, as he celebrates Independence Day in the most savory of ways.

If you want to learn more about Molly, and find out how the Maryland mom of four continues to shatter the record books, you can follow her YouTube channel, “Mom vs. Food.” You can also follow her on Instagram.

“Matt About Town” airs every Tuesday and Thursday on WTOP at 7:45 a.m., and runs throughout the rest of the day on 103.5 FM. His video pieces are always posted on

You can also find Matt’s videos on Instagram (@wtopnews and @mkaufax) and TikTok (@wtopnews and @mattabouttown_).

If you’ve got an idea for a feature story Matt should cover, reach out via the WTOP “contact us” page to submit your idea.

You can also contact Matt directly. His contact information is listed below. 

Check out more of “Matt About Town” on WTOP.


Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2024 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Matt Kaufax

If there's an off-the-beaten-path type of attraction, person, or phenomenon in the DC area that you think more people should know about, Matt is your guy. As the features reporter for WTOP, he's always on the hunt for stories that provide a unique local flavor—a slice of life if you will.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up