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Tommy, March 14 2021

25 Wings You've Never Had

The Wingaddicts crazy list of Connecticut restaurants, wings consumed, and flavors experienced is reaching ridiculous levels. We wish we we could make these wings pop right off the computer and onto a plate for you. But the fact is, you need to take a trip and go eat these! Most normal human beings don’t go into a restaurant and order six, seven, or eight different flavors of wings. Even the most hardcore Wingaddicts probably don’t go much higher than two or three, as it just isn’t normal to consume more than 18 wings in any one sitting. That’s what you have us for!

This list isn’t some type of rating system or "best of" list. While these wings are definitely on the board as some of our favorites, the intention of this blog post is to see if we can identify 25 EXCELLENT wings that you probably haven’t tried before. (If you have, we’d love to hear back in “Wingaddicts Community” on Facebook!)

* Click on the restaurant's name for the website and menus, and click on the photo to see the Wingaddicts YouTube Episode eating that wing!

This should keep you busy for at least a few weeks!

Coffee Bourbon BBQ: Chef Carlos Perez is an artist, and At The Corner (@thecorner) in Litchfield, isn’t a place that specializes in wings. But the five they have on the menu are to live for (not die for). Go visit this little gem, order a regular lunch or dinner, and try the Coffee Bourbon BBQ wings. Ahh, three of my favorite things! If you’re really hungry, or rolling with friends, ok try the Maple Chipotle, Honey Sriracha, Truffle, or Classic Buffalo. No matter what, you will be thrilled!

Sweet Heat Buffalo: We don’t normally go visit a spot that only has one flavor of wing on the menu. But (thank God), 8Fifty Woodfired Pizza is only a few miles from home or we may have never discovered this insane spot! Yeah, the pizza is on another level in the Middlebury area if you don’t feel like driving to New Haven, but this one wing . . . this one, beautiful, flavorful, woodfired, wing. Trust us!

Carolina Smoked Mustard: OK, you have tried this flavor elsewhere. In fact, we really really hope you have. We’ve had perfect Carolina Mustard wings two or three times in CT. But the ones at Beachland Smoke in West Hartford are worth the drive from anywhere. Here’s the secret: under “wings” the menu says “Beachland’s famous wings with choice of Buffalo, Sweet Garlic Chili, Kitchen Sink, or any smokehouse sauce.” You need to scroll down to see the Smokehouse Sauces. Any wing you eat here will make your favorite’s list. We promise. But try Carolina Mustard first!

Gluttony: So even though it’s one of the Seven Deadly Sins, when you see the word “Gluttony” on the wing menu next to 28 other flavors at Blackboard Cafe in Widsor Locks, and it has the words (bacon and ranch) in the parentheses, you order it. While we don’t normally go for ranch flavors in our wings, this one goes perfectly. And while we also fell in love with BBQUSABI and the “Hot Crack” Dry Rub, we’re completely confident that you’ll be smiling when you bite into these bad boys. Then go see a priest! 

Togarashi Brown Sugar: You might be one of those wing “purists” who only likes buffalo flavor and cringes at the thought of a sweet wing. Just trust us on this one. The Blind Rhino in Black Rock and South Norwalk, is hands down one of the best wing spots in the state. Don’t argue or I’ll fight you. LOL. They have another 18 flavors that you’ll love, including three new ones (Peach Guava Hot Honey, Benji Spicy BBQ, and Alabama Sauce) we haven’t even tried yet. Drooling as I type this.

Habanero Bonfire Blaze: We don’t go on Wingaddicts adventures searching for the blazing hot wing challenges that will melt our faces off. We want to try out all the wing spots in CT and we want to enjoy the flavors. This unique wing at Bonfire Grille in Milford was everything that a wing enthusiast could want. It’s flavorful as hell, puts a burn on your lips (but not one that will kill you) and then washes away with a frozen sangria (ordered separately), that we called the “fire extinguisher.” ALL of their other six wings are killer as well, but try this one first. Well, if you’re having others, then last!

Drunken Grubin Monkey & Spicy Monkey: Don’t worry, it’s really chicken (not monkey) but you’ll be sitting at The Flying Monkey in Newington where everything is monkey (and aviation) themed. The Spicy Monkey is burried under fried cherry peppers and the other comes with a story, ask your server. We don’t need to get into ingredients for these two. Just look at them. And then go there. They have ten interesting wings on that menu, and all are sick! (In a good way)!

Ethiopian: Come on man. If you have any kind of sense of humor, there’s a joke in there somewhere. But these wings are no joke and they are the only wing flavor on the menu at The Foundry in Sandy Hook. We stopped in there because Cover Two (across the street) wasn’t open yet. Trust us when we say that you’ve never had anything quite like this one. 

Riki’s Kitchen Sink: You see a few “kitchen sink” type wings around, where creative chefs just blend a bunch of flavors together and it works. Well, this one at Fork & Fire in Farmington, is a monster! And we’re not going to tell you the secret. And if you’re good and hungry you won’t go wrong with Sriracha Honey, House Buffalo, or Moroccan BBQ. Shhh, they might even make you the White Alabama BBQ off menu if you ask nicely and tell them you’re a Wingaddict! Wink. 

Apple Cider Wing: If you grew up in the 80’s (or have any taste at all) you’ll fall in love with everything about Four Dad’s Pub in Granby. You’ve never had anything like this Apple Cider Wing, but by the same token you will be blown away by any of Chef Ben and Chef BobRoy’s wings including the Nashville Dry Rub and the Teriyaki Citrus. Gosh, we had nine flavors and all were crazy good. Finishing things up with “The Terminator.” 

Cajun Ranch: It was really hard to narrow down a recommendation from our trip to Hot Rod Cafe in New London. Chef Carlos and Rod will never disappoint you, regardless of what wings you order. Their Buffalo is award-winning (they have the trophy to prove it), but this particular wing is one of the top sellers on a list of around 30 others at one of the very top wing joins in all of CT! So while you may have eaten a Cajun Ranch wing in your lifetime, you haven’t had one like this one! 

Mesquite Scotch Bonnet: So being a regular at Half Moon Resort in Montego Bay Jamaica, where scotch bonnet is one of their favorite cooking peppers, makes me happy all over every time I hear those words. However we’ve NEVER seen those words on a wing menu before and when we found out that Notch 8 in Bethel has a Food Network Chopped Champion (Calin Sauvron) running the kitchen, it was check mate. Did you ever watched Chopped? Contestants get weird ingredients in a basket and have to make actual meals. If you can win that, you can do funky things with scotch bonnet. Notch 8 has eight flavors of wings, wood fired in a crazy stone oven, and all are excellent. Yeah mon! (In my best Jamaican accent).

Gochujang: We only just ate at Redding Roadhouse last week, but the memory of this wing is forever etched in my brain. While there might be some recency bias involved, this has to be one of my favorite wings yet. They have lots of good ones, but this one. Oh, this one. I’ll take two dozen please!

Coconut Chili: A flavor you’ve never tried at a place you’ve never gone. It’s a double win! When we discovered (we like to think we discovered it, anyway) Royal Coachman Tavern at the Old Riverton Inn in Barkhampstead, we found one of the best wing joints in the state that nobody knows about (yet). I’m featuring the Coconut Chili wing to fit the title of this blog, but the Teriyaki was (hands down) the best one I ever had in my life. And the Jamaican Jerk wing. Ohhh. 

Slow Death: Don’t be afraid of the name, it’s not going to hurt you. But when you order this smoked wing at Scooter’s in New Milford, be sure to have extra bleu cheese. So unique, so good, so tender, and while you’re at it, order the other flavors on the menu. We couldn’t decide whether to highlight this one, or the “Schmokin Wings” which are just as amazing. In any event, you’ve had neither one yet! So, lucky you!

Hot N Smokey: Here we have another CT restaurant that isn't known for it's wings. The 1754 House is a quiet, fine dining experience in Woodbury and Chef Michael Bates-Walsh only has a single wing flavor on the menu. But you've never had it! Chef ran a special event last fall where he introduced three new temporary flavors (ask to get them back!) But even if they don't come back, this one was my favorite and its there to stay! Go there for their full menu, but start with a half dozen of these bad boys!

Chipotle Garlic: When we rolled up to Storrs to hit Red Rock Cafe, we were under the impression that they only had buffalo wings. It's an enormous restaurant with a huge menu, but their online menu simply says "Wings" and shows you how to order different quantities. But when you intiate an online order, suddenly 68 wing flavors popluate your screen! Whoa! We had eight, and we had some unique ones. This one was the bomb diggity! 

Everything Bagel: With so many wings to choose from at the famous Bidwell Tavern in Coventry, it's hard to narrow down a reccomendation for you. But here's one you've probably never tried, because we've only ever seen it there! Call in advance, though, because it was a special at the time and wasn't officially on the menu yet. If it's available, give it a whirl! 

Grandpa Joe's Dry Rub: You probably don't even have a Grandpa Joe. But this special dry rub wing comes from a unique menu of distinctive dry rubs at Cold Creek Tavern in Ellington. They have a bunch of cool wings on the menu (and beer) but this is one of the crowd favorites. Try the Firecracker too. Oh, and the Chili Lime Dry Rub. Oh, and the Cooper's Sweet and Sour. Somebody stop me! 

Habanyaki: You have to ask for it special, because its not on the menu (at least it wasn't when we acted on a tip last fall). But this wing at Burgerittoville in Newtown is worth the trip. I know, you wouldn't think of ordering wings at a place called Burgerittoville. You probably wouldn't think they had a dining room and a full service bar inside that little spot by the train tracks either. But they do! Wings up!

Tequila Lime: We're going to throw this one in as an Honrable Mention because JJ Stacks in Brookfield was forced to shut down for the past several months because of the pandemic. But the good news is, they're re-opening again this spring and their wing game is insane. This was one of our faves last summer.

Honey Nashville Heat: We always think of a Nashville wing flavor as a dry rub. But this one, at 585 Main in Naugatuck, was a wet rub and it instantly went into our Hall of Fame (even though we don't have a Hall of Fame yet)! This baby was a favorite of all three of us, which is saying something.

7 Spice: While we enjoyed the hell out of every single wing flavor on the menu at American Forged Pub in Naugatuck, this little house special is one-of-a-kind. That means you can't get it anywhere else. And that means you probably have never tried it. Go hungry. Start with this one!

Flaming Raspberry Cuervo: Finding this place was like finding gold on a sandy beach! Even the most committed Wingaddict would never consider going for wings at a seafood restaurant. Right? Well, Crabby Al's happens to have a brilliant chef (Dan Brayton) who also happens to be a member of our Wingaddicts Community. When he posted this one, we simply COULD. NOT. RESIST. 

So there you have it. This simple list that started off as 15, then grew to 18, then to 20, then 23, and finally finished up as "25 Wings You've Never Had - But NEED!" And I can keep going. So I will. Next time! 

Wings up!

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