When I was a child, my mom and I fought over the chicken wings whenever she made a roasted chicken--back in the '60s, there weren’t a variety of places to buy an order of crispy chicken wings. In fact, you could find them at Polynesian restaurants and that was about it.
Fast forward to today, and there's a glut of menus with chicken wings, from short-shorts-clad women serving batter-crusted wings at chain restaurants to almost every family- and sports bar-style restaurant boasting the best, crispiest and most flavorful wings. That may be a stretch.
I still think the best chicken wings in Sarasota were at the original Sports Page on Main Street, now just another high-rise luxury condo. But if those new walls could take, oh, how they would brag about those buffalo wings. Mind you, they probably had 1,000 calories a serving, but they were damn good wings.
So, in honor of the Super Bowl--which could also probably be called National Chicken Wing Day--I have selected my favorite wings in Sarasota.
Siesta Pizzeria. Trust me: those baked garlic-Parmesan wings are juicy, plump and salty with the parmesan hugging the skin.
White Horse Pub. Crispy and almost buttery, the curry wings are worth the messy fingers. (White Horse Pub does offer boneless wings, but to me it takes all the fun out of licking your fingers with really good sauce and grease.)
Lee Roy Selmon's. Barbecue wings, when seasoned and done right, are perfect alongside a cup of chili and well, another pile of barbecue wings with blue cheese dipping sauce.
Shangri La. On Bee-Ridge near Cattlemen, this old favorite gets a tip of the hat for its Chinese-style fried chicken wings.
If you are making your own wings, Trader Joe's has organic frozen chicken wings to sauce your own way, and The Fresh Market has a case of fresh chicken wings ready for some teriyaki or Thai sauce to kick off the game night.
Where are your favorite wings in town?