I grew up in the Buffalo, NY area where the Buffalo chicken wing was invented. There, chicken wings are a staple food at most casual social events. I always thought knowing how to eat a chicken wing was an innate skill until I moved away. It was then I discovered the rest of the world tends to be chicken wing challenged. Here are a few tips to eat chicken wings properly.
Chicken wings should always be served in a casual setting. Never serve them at a formal dinner.
The drumstick should be picked up with the fingers of both hands holding on to the ends. Hold the drumstick up to your mouth and eat it clean. Do not make sucking sounds or immerse one end of the drumstick in your mouth like a plunger and suck the meat off as you pull it out. Wipe your mouth and fingers with a napkin when finished.
The two boned, flat chicken wing should be treated differently.
- Pick the wing up by the ends with the fingers of both hands.
- Locate the end with the larger bone sticking out.
- Pull the cartilage off from this end and discard or eat it.
- Locate the smaller of the two bones and twist to loosen it.
- Pull the small bone from the wing.
- Do the same with the larger bone.
- You may now eat your boneless chicken wing.
- Wipe your mouth and fingers with a napkin when finished.
Should meat become lodged in your teeth while eating, excuse yourself from the table and go to the restroom or private area to clean it out. Do not use a toothpick at the table.
If you bite into a wing that is too spicy hot for your palate, eat bread or a cracker. Water will not dowse the flames. Do not hold your mouth open while flapping your hand in an attempt to decrease the heat. This looks silly and will do nothing other than disgust other diners.
When you are completely finished eating, use a wet nap or wash in your hands at a sink. Never, ever lick your fingers clean.
Enjoy your wings. If you visit Buffalo, I hope you can stop by the Anchor Bar, the acclaimed birthplace of the Buffalo wing.