CHESHIRE — On Sept. 16, seven teenagers entered the West Haven location of Texas Roadhouse with great anticipation. Along with three friends, Cheshire’s Andre Nguyen, Zach Coleman, Rome Smith, and Luke Nieman were looking forward to more than just sharing a meal.
Over the social media site TikTok, Nguyen saw that a viral challenge had started to see who could eat the most baskets of rolls at Texas Roadhouse.
“At the time, the record was 27 and I thought that our group could eat more,” said Nguyen, a senior at Cheshire High School. “Going in, our goal was to eat 28.”
The crew, who recently changed their named to Bulk Boys, exceeded their high expectations by finishing 33 baskets and 132 rolls overall.
“We felt pretty light-headed and full at the end of the night,” said Nguyen. “It felt great to break the record.”
To document their night out, the boys video-recorded their meal and posted it on their TikTok page, called @bulkboyseat. As of early October, their post has been ‘liked’ by 1.8 million people.
“We knew some of the (Texas Roadhouse) waitresses and workers going in. They came back to the table to ask if we needed anything,” said Coleman. “There were people checking us out (at the restaurant).”
In the video, the boys interact with the camera and display their own different techniques for eating the rolls.
“There were three rolls per basket,” said Nguyen. “I like to take four at a time, squeeze the buns in water, and eat them.”
Nicknamed Mr. Bulk by his friends, Milford’s Jack Clini ate the most rolls on that particular evening.
“He was our cheat code,” added Nguyen.
Along with sharing their brand on TikTok, the Bulk Boys were excited to have their video picked up by the social media site Barstool Sports. Since being posted on Sept. 22, their clip has been liked by 211, 306 people on instagram.
The video was also put up on Twitter.
“I didn’t find out that we got picked up there until a few days after we got the record,” said Coleman. “I got a call and a DM (direct message) asking for permission to post the video. I was surprised, but it was very cool.”
The boys enjoyed getting recognized for their big meal.
“When I walk around at school, I hear some people say, ‘You are one of the guys on Barstool,’” said Nguyen. “It is good to have more exposure for our group.”
Smith, who attends Cheshire High School with Nguyen, started his junior year this fall. Nieman attended school with his friends before transferring to Cheshire Academy.
While having graduated from CHS back in June, Coleman stays in close contact with his local friends.
“We are in the gym all the time and stay in shape,” Nguyen said.
Individually at Texas Roadhouse, Nguyen set a restaurant record by eating 37 pancakes in one day.
“As group, we want to go out and eat 200 pancakes in a meal,” said Nguyen.
In the future, the Bulk Boys look to build up their brand on social media. They put up their first TikTok video on Feb. 9 and now have 214.6 K followers.
“One of our friends has 300K followers on TikTok,” said Coleman. “That is a good number for us to shoot for right now.”
The group would also love for restaurant chains to invite them to participate in more food challenges.
“We eat every day,” said Nguyen. “I want to go to more places and show what we can do. We need people to know that the Bulk Boys are in town.”