The Heart Attack Grill in Arizona sounds like an awesome place. You can get an 8,000-calorie burger for $10 and it’s a restaurant that makes no bones about being politically correct.

Yes, a place like this is literally a dying breed, but what might be even more impressive is how a small unhealthy burger shop has grown so well and turned plenty of bad publicity from a nurse’s union into a successful food chain.

The Heart Attack Grill was founded in 2005 by Jon Basso who, although not qualified, calls himself Dr. Jon. He’s even made a few appearances on TV in full ‘Doctor’ get-up waving his fake ‘medical opinion’. But he’s not a real doctor, and his waitresses are not real nurses, although they do dress up like it.

That was the problem for the HAG, because the Arizona Board of Nursing and the Center for Nursing Advocacy launched a lawsuit against the burger joint over their derogatory use of nurses.

After being closed for a brief period, the HAG re-opened fully equipped with disclaimers explaining their staff were not to be confused with real accredited professional nurses. John Stossel and his epic mustache even did a ‘Give Me A Break‘ report on it.

Of course, some people aren’t happy about the tongue-in-cheek approach the HAG takes towards their healthy food. Some people are disgusted that the burgers are called single, double, triple, or even quadruple bypass depending on the number of beef patties. The restaurant also refuses to sell Diet sodas, and instead offers beer, hard liquor, regular soda, unfiltered cigarettes and french fries cooked in pure lard. What’s not to like?

Even Joey Chestnut of Nathan’s Hot Dog eating fame, holds the record for fastest eaten Quadruple Bypass burger on the HAG’s list of ‘Real Men‘.

The Heart Attack Grill is slowly expanding to other locations, but is not ready to call itself a franchise just yet. Check out the website’s News page to see all the international exposure this one restaurant has gotten. French, German and Japanese news channels have all done reports on the place.

Just goes to show that even a little thing like a lawsuit and the least healthy menu possible can’t keep a true businessman from getting some work done. The Heart Attack Grill deserves a salute for its ingenuity and ability to turn bad press into free international publicity.

Anyone ever been to this place? It looks like heaven. Let us know in the comments section.

(The brilliant “Dr.” Jon Basso)

Washington Post: Arizona Waitresses Dress As Naughty Nurses