[eat] Where to Find Great Chicken Wings
Recently I decided to search for delicious local chicken wings and enlisted the help of friend, cook, and self-professed wing nut, Jeff. Our first stop was Neighbors Restaurant & Bar (2150 N. Amidon) for buffalo wings.
Jeff and I ordered 12 wings for $5.99. The sauce for the wings was right on for heat; it builds as you eat, with just enough bite and kick with a vinegar finish. The wings had a good amount of sauce on them but still had crispiness to the skin. The meat was juicy. Jeff asked for blue cheese dressing, which he said was good, but the wings did not come with the usual accoutrement, such as celery. When we asked about this, the server told us it depends on who’s cooking that day on how they’re accompanied. Overall Neighbors has a pretty tasty buffalo wing.
Our next stop for buffalo wings was The Port of Wichita (1548 S. Webb). We had the half pound order for $6.75. The wings were crispy which held up under the sauce whose flavor hits immediately with a black pepper finish. These wings have terrific flavor and very juicy meat! Yet again, no veggies on the side. Jeff again asked for blue cheese dressing but he couldn’t really taste the blue cheese in it.
We didn’t want to leave out regular fried chicken wings so we stopped at Da Louisiana Chicken and Waffle House (1555 S. Bluffview). We ordered combo #4, four chicken wings, a waffle and a drink for $6.49. These wings were highly seasoned, salty but not too salty. The wings had a super crunchy crust, not too hard. The meat was juicy and delicious and made for a great pairing with the spiced soft waffle. I detected cinnamon or nutmeg in the waffle. I like a waffle with a crisp outside and soft tender middle but Jeff liked the soft texture of the waffle since the chicken was already very crispy. Da Louisiana Chicken and Waffle House serves a whole meaty wing. Jeff and I both enjoyed the hot sauce they serve with it, as it lived up to its Louisiana name in flavor as well.
Our last stop on our wing tour was Mr. Bigs (5132 E. 21st). We walked in and Jeff immediately noticed fried turkey wings on the menu. He turned to me and said, “I know we’re doing chicken wings but I have to try those!” Jeff ordered the fried turkey wing and side for $5.99 and two chicken wings ala carte for $1.60 each. Mr. Bigs also serves a whole chicken wing, crisp and juicy and served piping hot! The wings were also well seasoned and had paprika and garlic notes to the crust. Jeff’s professional palette detected a hint of celery salt, which he thought was a nice unexpected addition to the flavor. Jeff enjoyed his fried turkey wing, which tasted “like thanksgiving!” and the skin was super crispy.
Jeff and I visited only a few of the places in Wichita that offer wings. What’s your favorite wing spot?