March 07, 2011

Wings To Go

Wings To Go
400 Newark Street
Hoboken, NJ 07030
(201) 459-6070

This review has been a long time coming, and I apologize for that, but I am back with a review from September.  This review started on the drive up to the National Buffalo Wing Festival in Buffalo, New York.  Jody and I took off from Manhattan, through the Lincoln Tunnel and into Jersey.  Despite a couple of wrong turns, which is inevitable in New Jersey (I swear that the state of New Jersey turns while you drive in it.  Heading north?  Gotcha... you're going south!  Too far south and you hit the Jersey Shore, but no cheap shots about it being t-shirt time, GTL or grenade whistles... on to the review) we found Wings To Go.

The last time Jody and I ate at Wings to Go was close to a decade ago in York, PA.  We had gone down to play paintball with my brother and his friends.  Among them are Matt and Zak from the Our List Podcast.  I remember ordering buckets of wings... Honey Mustard, Hot Buffalo and Teriyaki I think. We were hooked then, but living in New York, we had no way to have them again without going back to York... or so we thought. Jody found one in Hoboken, NJ!

We started strong with a smörgåsbord of flavors that included Chesapeake Bay, Caribbean Jerk, Honey Mustard, and Parmesan Garlic.  Here's what we thought:

Chesapeake Bay:  Chesapeake Bay spice is typically used with sea food and the salty, peppery flavors really enhance crab and other seafood flavors.  At Wings To Go, we found a combination of salt, cayenne pepper, ground celery seed and sweet Hungarian paprika, mixed with clarified butter and tossed over wings.  We expected a bit more of a kick and it reminded us of a wet Cajun sauce.  All in all, the weakest of the flavors, but still worth a try, especially if you are a fan of sea food.
Chesapeake Bay

Caribbean Jerk: Caribbean Jerk is probably the most robust and ingredient filled recipe we tried that day.  Jerk flavoring is primarily pimento (or allspice)  and Scottish bonnet peppers (100,000-350,000 on the Scoville scale, just below the habanero chili) with a mixture of cloves, cinnamon, scallions, nutmeg, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper.  At Wings To Go, this sauce was missing the heat of a mixture that contains Scottish bonnet peppers.  These wings were good, despite missing that kick.  Is it the best jerk chicken you'll ever have?  No.  Are they solid wings when you want something different?  Absolutely. 
Caribbean Jerk

Honey Mustard:  These were nostalgia on a plate.  Exactly what we remembered from York, PA and lived up to our fond memories.  The biggest problem with many honey mustard sauces is that they use too much honey and too little mustard.  The honey allows the sauce to stick to the wing better, but gives the sauce a sickly sweet edge.  I don't know how they do it, but Wings To Go has the recipe down.  They weren't too sweet, did not have an overpowering mustard flavor and yet, the sauce clung to the wings perfectly.  Although the wings were coated in sauce, their only knock was that there was no extra reservoir to dip into.  Get these wings, they are awesome.
Honey Mustard

Parmesan Garlic:  If there is an overall winner of this stop, it was easily the Parmesan Garlic.  These wings were saturated with butter and oil, heavily dusted with Parmesan cheese and slapped you in the face with their flavor.  It is well known that Parmesan Garlic is Jody's favorite, and it is safe to say that these passed his flavor test.  The generous amount of ingredients in this version helped to make these easily the best flavor of the day and well worth ordering.  One warning, if you are going to share a car with someone like Jody for the next 7 hours, be warned.  His Parmesan Garlic burbs could make a dead man open the door and jump out of a moving vehicle at 65 MPH.  Unbearable. 
Garlic Parmesan

The fear with going to Wings To Go was ruining our memory of their wings from about a decade ago.  Restaurant chains can vary significantly from one location to another.  This experience was a pleasant reminder that we liked Wings To Go for a reason.  Their vast menu of flavors, crispy (maybe double fried) wings, and multiple locations makes Wings To Go a great option when on the run and looking for more than just a hot wing.  Like Atomic Wings, Hurricane Grille and Wings, and WingZone, Wings To Go is a solid place and should be located in every college town.  

Check out any of their locations because Wings To Go is Wingmen approved.

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