We woke up this morning feeling excited to head out. I had been talking about eating Buffalo Wings for days and days, and thus had managed to build up an appetite for it as well. Aside from my 11 year old son, my younger children had no idea, nor did they care, about what all the fuss was about.
We made our way to the awesome Coca Cola Field, home of the Buffalo Bisons, and where they were having the 8th Annual Buffalo Wing Festival. It was early afternoon, barely 12:00 but already the lines were long and the sun was hot. But the smell of sauces and BBQ was in the air, which made everyone excited even more.
We walked in and there were stands all around this massive field. But we were already feeling a bit hot, so we made our way to the beer tent for some refreshments, yes, it was a bit early to be drinking beer for us, but this was a special occasion. My husband couldn’t have been happier.
It wasn’t cheap. Basically you buy sheets of 10 tickets, a dollar each. The stand charge about $2-$4 for two-three wings. But we bought 30 tickets and forged ahead, we were going to make the best of it! Our first stop though was not to try chicken wings, but rather spare ribs. Not just any ribs, but Lafayette Tap Room ribs. I know, I know…what are they doing there? But, they claimed when we asked them that they were so good and had won so many awards that the Buffalo Wing Festival Committee begged them to join. We were skeptical heaing all those big claims, but we tried them. They were fabulous!!
Afterwards, we headed over to the Anchor Bar stand. Anchor Bar is best known for its wings, and for the fact that they invented the Buffalo Wing. We couldn’t wait to try them. We did and were not impressed. They were “ok”. I couldn’t believe it! These were the people who invented the stuff, how could it be?
We kept making our rounds by all of the stands, taking breaks, drinking “pop” (that’s what they call soda in Buffalo, NY), and eating wings. The little ones had other treats and we enjoyed some of the entertainment like the “Chicken Run”, which were these guys dressed up as chickens racing, and the watching the judges taste the different wings and sauces in that were at the event.
At one point though, I looked down at what must’ve been my 10th wing and my stomach turned. Not because it wasn’t delicious, but because it was so hot, and I was so full, that I couldn’t bring myself to eat another bite. My 11 year old and my husband kept at it like real troopers that they are, and yet, there I was, the one who claimed I would eat a million wings on this very day, feeling weak at the site on wing number 11. I did go for one last bite, you know, for the sake of tasting and providing my darling readers with an honest review of course, and that was for the Hurricane Wings, and because my husband, after tasting them insisted I try them. They were, of all the wings we ate at this event, the absolute best. In the end, I washed it all down with one last beer and threw in the towel.
The event was fun in some ways. We tasted a lot of wings, and were lucky to have gotten there when it just started because it by the time we were ready to leave it was crowded and the lines were very long. What wasn’t fun about it was the intense heat and sun just beating on you. They don’t have tents for you to hang out, unless it’s the beer tent, and unless you brought a portable chair, you had to go to the stadium seats, far away from all the action, to get some rest off your feet. All in all though, we enjoyed it. They had other treats too, like fresh watermelons, and popcorn, even free wine tasting which was wonderful. Hubby even got to get his picture taken with the local female Roller Derby team, The Suicidal Saucies.
If you’ve never been to The Annual Buffalo Wing Festival, I think that it’s something to try, at least once with the family, unless of course, eating buffalo wings is not your thing. And if you do go, get there as soon as the event starts, come with an appetite, some cold water, and cash. They do not accept credit card, nor is their a cash machine near by.
Update: Not believing that Anchor Bar didn’t have good wings, we gave it another try, this time we headed to Anchor Bar directly. The owners were there, wonderful, lovely people, the bar was packed. My husband ordered a Guiness and talked about Ireland with the bartender while waiting for the order.
In short, the wings rocked! So much better than at the festival. We loved them…and they deliver anywhere! Hurricane Wings still remain a favorite though, because they have a better variety of sauces and flavors, which Anchor Bar, sadly, does not.