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Tommy, December 6 2021

BEST 31 WINGS IN 2021 (Part Two)

Hey Wingaddicts!!! 

So, as 2021 comes racing to an end we look back on 67 restaurants we visited this year, the 399 plates of wings we destroyed, and all the new flavors as we ran our two-year total to 354! Can you even fathom 354 different flavors of wings? 

We had SO many great times, met so many great owners, and enjoyed so many different wings but we had 31 that really stood out. So I decided to blog about 31 wings we had in 21 (2021 that is) that you need to go try yourself. Clearly there were more, but there were just some that had our heads spinning!

Nobody would read to the end of a blog that featured 31 different wings, so I’ve decided to break it up into three different weekly posts. Consider this PART TWO of the 31 in 21 series. And bear in mind, that we still have three weeks to go and might have to add to the list before December ends.

* Remember, click on the restaurant link for its website and click on the photo for our Wingaddicts YouTube episode there where that particular wing was featured!

Let the party continue . . .

We’d been wanting to visit Wise Guys in Meriden, CT since it opened, but the modified hours brough upon by the covid, coupled with the implementation of a “takeout only” policy made it difficult for us to schedule. We finally made it over there during our Season 7 “Pizza Joint Wings” series and enjoyed a righteous wing and pizza feast. When we thought it had ended, when we thought we could eat no more, owner Mike Mingolello surprised us with his “secret” (not on the menu) Cajun Fire Roasted wings. Fire roasted in the pizza oven in an iron skillet with onions, you have to be a Wingaddict to know that you can order these! And you should!

OK, so 2021 saw us start up a RELAPSE series so we could go back and a deeper dive into our absolute favorite wing spots. We’ve only recorded ten thus far (fear not, the list is a LOT longer and we work in no particular order), but one of the places we love most is The Hub Pizza Bar. With spots in both Naugatuck and Ansonia, CT, The Hub runs weekly wing specials where chef Scotty Well creates his own unique flavors that keep Wingaddicts coming back regularly. I could honestly post ten different wings here, but since they were “specials” you can’t get them unless they come back. So we’ll give you one that’s on the standard menu. HO-LY-CRAP this Wake’N Bacon wing (made with espresso from the Loaded Goat next door) is to live for!

Another (obvious) RELAPSE place is the legendary Dew Drop Inn in Derby. Considering they have more flavors there (over 125) than any other restaurant in the state, you can imagine we’ve enjoyed a LOT there (and you’d be right). Picking just one for this blog is a fool’s errand, but I’ve been called worse. I’m going to highlight this Pink Peppercorn Lemon Curd wing for a few reasons. First, it sounds disgusting. Second, I’d never ordinarily order such a thing. Third, I’ve never seen this flavor mentioned anywhere else on the planet. Fourth, it blew my freaking taste buds across the room! 

Tipping Chair Tavern in Southington is one of the coolest wing joints we’ve found for live music all year round. It also stands out as unique because they serve a breaded wing which isn’t always a favorite among wing enthusiasts. While their house Garlic Buffalo and their “Eruption” wings were completely unforgettable, this special signature Donut Wing is stamped in our minds forever. Yes, it’s a wing encased in a donut. I won’t try to explain it any further. You should try this wing!

Our knowledge of wing joints was limited to maybe 20 or 25 when we began Wingaddicts, so we hit Google to find Connecticut restaurants who had won awards for their wings. One such place, Inishmor Pub was so far away from us (in Colchester, CT) that it went to the back of the line. We finally made it over there - and we WILL be going back to RELAPSE! - and are here to tell you that this spot is worth the drive from anywhere! I could legitimately highlight their Creamy Buffalo or their unique Curry, Maple Bacon, or Irish Fairy Dust wings but we’ll stick to one here and bring you this ridiculous “Rustic” wing. Think Thanksgiving. Damn, go try them all! This place is special.

While, officially, the Blackboard Tavern in Windsor Locks, CT was our last episode in 2020 (December 28) it still fits within a year of this blog post and can not be excluded. Again, we had multiple flavors that were completely unforgettable but our ninth flavor of the night (yes it was a big night!) was called Hot Crack, sent over by a great group of locals who were in the house that night. I don’t think I need to explain the flavor, but let me encourage you to visit this location. It’s literally two minutes from Bradley Airport. Home run (wink).

Hindsight BBQ is a restaurant that opened up at the tail end of 2020, partially so they could say “Hindsight is 2020!” Ten points for cleverness! In the northwest corner of Waterbury, near Waterville Park, this place has some killer BBQ on the menu. It’s fair to say that we raved about all four wing flavors on the menu, but if we have to choose one today its probably going to have to be the Bama White BBQ wing. Go there hungry. You won’t be able to resist the brisket tacos or the Texas armadillo eggs either!

OK, as long as I’m making tough choices I’ll just go ahead and highlight the Gorgonzola Hot Pepper Cream wings at Rose’s Family Restaurant in Oxford. The picture simply cannot do this wing justice. The Carbonara wings are equally as mind-blowing, but you’re just going to have to take my word (as a seasoned professional) and try them both. Oh, and the Seafood Combo pizza. Oh, and the tomahawk ribeye steak. This place is Heaven sent!

People in Milford, CT are constantly raving about the pizza at GG’s Wood Fired pizza and for good reason. I’ve enjoyed it a few times myself. The Italian menu is so ridiculous there that a normal person wouldn’t even dream of ordering wings. Luckily I’m not a normal person. We got down there immediately when we started the “Pizza Joint Wings” season because of the perfect fit. Let’s just say that I will be ordering wings EVERY time I go there from now on. This Garlic Herb Parm wing was out of a fairy tale. The chunks of oven roasted garlic and the wood oven smoke put this one on our favorites list immediately. 

Another pizza joint we wanted to explore was Sasso’s Pizza in Torrington and we FINALLY made it over there! Another gold mine! These wings are actually pit smoked first and THEN finished off in a coal fired oven! Dear lord! OK, I’ll pick just one to highlight. This Teriyaki Wasabi was probably all our favorites (but not by much!)

So there’s another ten wings that you really need to add to your go-to lists! Remember, EAT IN for the full experience and be sure to post your wing shots in our Wingaddicts Community on Facebook! Next week I’ll conclude my three-part series with a final eleven wings on our magical “31 in 21” list!

Wings up! 

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