What are the Origins of Buffalo Wings?

Friday Dec 10, 2021

Being as they're one of our favorite foods here at Hungry Howie's®, we had to ask the question of where did Buffalo wings originate? There are many variations on the delicious chicken dish, from extra hot and spicy to mild, boneless, crispy and fried, and more. We serve a few different kinds ourselves, from the original spicy Howie Wings® that come with your choice of ranch or bleu cheese, to a poppable boneless breaded portion that comes with spicy bread. But what are the true, original Buffalo wings and where did they come from? Keep reading to learn some fun facts about this great food's history. 

The Origin of Buffalo Wings

It may not be a surprise to learn that the spicy chicken wings originated in Buffalo, New York and kept the namesake. Sources say that the dish took hold in the 1960s at a restaurant in the city known as the Anchor Bar. The dish, like many great culinary discoveries, came from pure improv, as one night, co-owner of the restaurant Teressa Bellissimo cooked leftover fried chicken wings in hot sauce for her son and a few of his friends. The young gentlemen loved the late-night snack, and the mother added Buffalo wings to the bar's menu the very next day. The rest, as they say, is history. 

The spicy chicken appetizer and side dish grew increasingly popular across the country as Teressa's son Dominic and a man by the name of Dick Winger began touring the country promoting their new culinary creation. Mr. Winger's connection to the story is an important one–he is the man who made the hot sauce for the Anchor Bar, the original hot sauce to coat Buffalo wings. Winger and Dominic Bellissimo began selling the hot sauce to restaurants in America, using the wings to showcase its great flavor and versatility. Before long, chicken lovers everywhere were fans of the wings. 

Why Buffalo Wings Caught On 

When asking where did buffalo wings originate, the timeline following the spontaneous late night snack is important to follow. The creation of Buffalo wings and their rise in popularity is a result of perfect timing. As history states, right around the time Bellissimo invented the spicy dish, Americans had begun to lean towards a greater consumption of boneless chicken breast instead of consuming whole chickens. This drove down the price of wings, making them not just affordable for restaurants to purchase and prepare but also affordable for customers to buy in large quantities. 

Around the same time the price of chicken wings was dropping, sports bars started becoming more prevalent across the country. More local spots were popping up that had big screen televisions and people began congregating at restaurants to watch the big game. And what goes better than food, friends, and sports? Add to the fact that chicken wings are easy to share with a group and you have yourself a winning food.

Buffalo Wings Influence Other Foods

By now, you've probably seen all sorts of "Buffalo" items on restaurant menus. Here at Hungry Howie's®, not only do we serve our famous spicy Howie Wings®, but we also feature our delicious Buffalo Chicken Pizza. Due to the widespread popularity of the original wings, the term Buffalo grew to be synonymous with "spicy" and began appearing on all sorts of items.

You may have seen Buffalo shrimp, Buffalo sauce, and more. And not only are there countless "Buffalo" foods, but the influence of the original Buffalo wings is so great that there are now entire festivals dedicated to the wings. The National Buffalo Wing Festival takes place back in the wings' home city of Buffalo, New York every year. There's even a "National Buffalo Wing Hall of Flame," which pays tribute to the spicy kick that the dish has. 

Order for Carry-Out or Delivery

If you're craving a delicious order of Howie Wings® we don't blame you. They're one of our favorites. Place your order tonight for either carry-out or delivery buffalo wings. Give us a call or order online. When you order online you can use the HowieTrack® feature to see where your food is each step of the way until it reaches your door. Or, if you prefer, stop on by and grab your food to go. We're always happy to see our customers.

Choose from our classic Howie Wings®, our original boneless Howie Wings®, or select an order of spicy chicken tenders that comes with a side of Cajun Bread. No matter what you order you can't go wrong. And don't forget the soft drinks, a nice side salad, and your favorite Hungry Howie's® pizza to make it a complete meal. Bring home something for everyone. Grab a side of ranch or bleu cheese dressing for your wings, or select from any other one of our popular dipping sauces.