The Buffalo Wings Craze

One of the truly original creations of American cuisine are Buffalo wings, a tradition that started in the New York city of Buffalo, thus providing the name of the dish. Also called hot wings, the appetizer or entree is basically chicken wings that have been covered in a sauce, usually with a spicy taste. Most restaurants that serve these Buffalo wings include celery and a blue cheese or ranch dressing to contrast the heat that is inherent in the sauce. While it is acknowledged that the hot wings definitely come from the city of Buffalo, there are a few different stories about the true history of the dish.

The most commonly accepted story about the origin of Buffalo wings has to do with the Anchor Bar. This restaurant and pub was owned by Frank and Teressa Belissimo and on one particular evening, a snack was needed for the guests of the restaurant along with the owners’ son, who was returning home with friends from his university. Instead of using the chicken wings for stock or baking them, Teressa decided to deep fry them and then toss them with a hot sauce. Her original sauce used cayenne as the principal ingredient and also some vinegar butter. The hot wings were an immediate hit and soon became a regular item on the menu.

As the Buffalo wings craze has spread across the country, many eateries have come up with wings recipes of their own, sometimes featuring a choice of sauces that can range from a Thai peanut sauce to a sweet barbecue sauce. In addition, many other types of restaurants have learned how to make wings as an appetizer to more traditional fare. An excellent example of this phenomenon is with pizza delivery services. While their main option is obviously pizza, the vast majority of these pizza delivery companies also have Buffalo wings on their menu.