The Best Game-Day Wings You Can Get Across the Country
If wings are your thing, seek out the restaurants and bars known for their incredible (and often super-spicy!) recipes.
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From Mild to Fiery
Head straight to these spots for championship-worthy wings around the country. With tempting flavors like barbecue, Buffalo and even something outrageously named "Ring of Fire," these restaurants and bars have every type of wing you could want as you watch the game.
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Wing Dome — Seattle
Turn up the heat by visiting the "home of the burn," otherwise known as the Wing Dome. Roger Mooking and Aaron Sanchez tested these nuclear nibbles in the 7-Alarm Challenge, when they attempted to devour seven of the sweat-inducing wings in just seven minutes. The explosive sauce of cayenne, chile flakes, jalapeno, horseradish and habanero peppers had them waving the white flag in mere minutes, and they quickly ordered the "recovery kit," an ice cream sandwich and two ice-cold glasses of milk. Before you sacrifice your taste buds to a spicy fate, be sure to try out the Wing Dome's less-incendiary flavors, like Thai Sweet Chile or Triple Garlic (pictured).
Photography courtesy of Wing Dome
Go to: Wing Dome
Beer Belly — Los Angeles
The owner of this Koreatown brewpub admits to being obsessed with his rotating lineup of craft beers, but it's the blend of "good American and hearty comfort food" that brings in the regulars. Serving up sweet Honey Dijon & Cilantro, Buffalo Blue and super-spicy Volcano Chipotle chicken wings, the kitchen provides plenty of savory bites to pair with your beer flight. Guy Fieri tried the fiery Volcano Chipotle wings on Triple D and loved the saucy combination of adobo and Sriracha with applewood liquid smoke and a housemade blue cheese dressing. The locals say it's easy to spend hours at Beer Belly enjoying the endless craft beer options and inventive wings.
Photography courtesy of Beer Belly
Go to: Beer Belly
Jake Melnick's Corner Tap — Chicago
While the menu at this Windy City taproom features approachable flavors like traditional Buffalo and Poncho's Garlic and Cayenne, the most famous are the XXX wings (pictured). These "angry" wings are so hot that if you're brave enough to order them, you'll be rewarded with your picture on Jake's Wall of Flame and a fire hat. The wing sauce is made with the "king daddy of all peppers," the ghost pepper, which is 400 times hotter than a jalapeno. So if you're a fearless heat seeker, order the XXX platter while enjoying the game on one of the 22 televisions surrounding the bar. Or take your game-day experience to new heights by renting out the bar's keg room and patio for a private tailgate.
Photography courtesy of Jake Melnick's Corner Tap
Go to: Jake Melnick's
Oohh's & Aahh's Restaurant — Washington, D.C.
This tiny carry-out counter is best known for serving up soul-food favorites like its famous fried wings (both chicken and turkey), which are guaranteed to elicit the restaurant's namesake sounds from customers. A hometown haunt for many D.C. football players during the off-season, this joint turns out multiple flavors of the best-selling wings, like classic Buffalo, barbecue, lemon pepper and teriyaki. The tangy lemon pepper wings are dredged in flour and sauced in a homemade lemon-and-herb blend that's spiked with hot sauce. During his Triple D visit, Guy praised the "sultry" flavor and perfect "crunch-to-meat ratio" of the flawlessly fried wings and suggested the restaurant start bottling its sauce.
Photography courtesy of Oohh's & Aahh's
Go to: Oohhs & Aahhs Restaurant
Anchor Bar — Buffalo
Known as the "birthplace of the Buffalo wing" since 1964, this upstate New York institution was the setting for a hot-wing Throwdown between Bobby Flay and "the wing king," Drew Cerza. Cerza founded the National Chicken Wing Festival and is seriously passionate about his wings, which are fried naked without a dredge and tossed in a bourbon-brown sugar barbecue sauce that's spiked with ancho chiles and honey. His juicy jumbo wings prove that Buffalo still knows best when it comes to its namesake dish. Anchor Bar offers its famous specialty in mild, medium, hot and "suicidal" heat levels, and even ships frozen wings all over the country.
Photography courtesy of Anchor Bar
Go to: Anchor Bar, Buffalo
Ronnie's Ribs, Wings & Other Things — Richmond, Virginia
Chicken wings get the slow-cooked, smoked treatment at this barbecue trailer that's located in a closed-down gas station parking lot. The 20-foot smoker is nicknamed "Big Red" and churns out hickory wood-smoked barbecue like pulled pork, jumbo wings and other Southern-style favorites, with grill master Ronnie at the wheel. On The Best Thing I Ever Ate, Chef Delilah Winder guaranteed that the shack's smoky 'cue "will blow you away." Luckily, Ronnie offers mobile catering and even ships his wings to every corner of the country, so you can savor the smoke wherever your game-day shindig takes you.
Photography courtesy of Ronnie's
710 Grille — San Pedro, California
This California grill is the area's headquarters for hot wings, stirring up six heat levels of sauce, from the mild "Safe" to the terrifyingly spicy "Ring of Fire." Featured on Outrageous Food, these famously fiery wings start with a "mouthful of flavor" but end with a spicy explosion that makes grown men cry. The freshly fried wings are dusted with fiendishly hot habanero and ghost chile pepper powders, then doused with a sizzling vinegar sauce laced with more ghost chile and three types of chile extracts, the hottest of which tops out at 5 million Scoville units. Be sure to keep some cold beverages within reach.
Photography courtesy of 710 Grille
Go to: 710 Grille
The Jug Handle Inn — Cinnaminson, New Jersey
For half-price wings during the week, Aaron McCargo Jr. always heads to The Jug Handle. On The Best Thing I Ever Ate, Aaron claimed he could eat these wings "seven days a week" and as early as breakfast time for their "amazing crunch" that withstands even the heaviest sauce. Flavors include hot honey and Buffalo garlic, but Aaron recommends the fiery Buffalo Bald Eagle Wings, which are so hot you'll surely shed some tears while eating them. Coated in a super-secret hot sauce, these wings are "not made for wimps," but if you need a brew to cool you down, you've come to the right place. This sports bar is outfitted with everything you'll need during the big game, including a pool table and shuffleboard to pass the time during commercials.
Photography courtesy of The Jug Handle Inn
Go to: The Jug Handle Inn
CK's Wings-n-Things — Johnstown, Pennsylvania
As the name suggests, this Pennsylvania hot spot puts out plenty of wings — more than 1,450 flavor varieties. Choose a combo like bacon-cheddar or honey-garlic ranch, or get weird with chocolate s'mores, pumpkin pie or Fruity Pebble-crusted wings. After you've skimmed the menu, decide if you're game to take on the hottest wing of all: the Nuclear Hell 2, a wing so hot you'll need to sign a waiver before digging in. Those who have tried it describe this wing as "violent" — yikes! First, a jumbo wing is injected three times with capsaicin extract for pure heat, then it's hit with nitro powder (the hottest spice powder in the world), and finally it's dusted with finely ground habaneros for a hellish finish.
Photography courtesy of CK's Wings-n-Things
Go to: CK's Wings-n-Things
Bad Boyz Bistro — Bedford, Pennsylvania
A spicy stop on the Outrageous Food hot wings tour, this Bedford bistro specializes in bringing the heat, from the 911 hot sauce to the jalapeno-laced Thermo Nuclear level to the terrifying Hellraiser wings that are slathered in a super-thick sauce that "would scald the devil himself." This fire-starting sauce begins with the 911 level as the base and builds on that heat with a six-pepper chile powder, whole habaneros and ghost chiles, and pure capsaicin extracts for a flavor that's so hot it will leave you "lightheaded." If the big game inspires your inner daredevil, we advise ordering these wings during halftime, when you're free to take a long break with a cool glass of milk.
Photography courtesy of Bad Boyz Bistro
Go to: Bad Boyz Bistro
The Smoke Joint — Brooklyn
Two buddies started this barbecue shack in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood, where traditional methods and varying regional styles combine to form big-city flavor. They prove their poultry prowess with their succulent Brooklyn Wings (pictured), a "funkified" version of the upstate classic Buffalo wing that Guy tried on Triple D. The wings are hit with a 77-spice dry rub that features Spanish paprika, cumin and cayenne before they're hickory-smoked for hours and finished in the fryer. Once fried and crispy, the wings are tossed in the house "hollapeno" sauce, which boasts a fiery blend of chipotle peppers, sambal and a spice market's worth of seasonings.
Photography courtesy of The Smoke Joint
Go to: The Smoke Joint