I go to Super Bowl parties every year. Not for the football, mind you. I didn't even know who was going to be in this year's Super Bowl until last night (my mother nearly stroked out upon realizing this about her only, sports-retarded child). I go for the food.
My favorite food at Super Bowl parties has always been and will always be Buffalo wings. It's probably the only time of the year when I eat them, and I'm always excited to see them on a party spread. Frank's Red Hot sauce and butter could coat a burned tire and I'd eat it. Hell, Buffalo wings even taste good cold.
You can, of course, make your own Buffalo wings at home for your party. But half the fun of eating them is not having to endure the messy creation or clean-up processes, leaving that to restaurants like Hooters or Buffalo Wild Wings.
So I asked our Twitter followers yesterday for their favorite wing joints in town. Their answers (and directions) are below. Order in if you're having a Super Bowl party, or go out and leave the clean-up to the pros.
Champps (1121 Uptown Park Boulevard, 713-627-2333)
If you're going to watch the sporting event of the year, you might as well watch it at one of the most sports-centric bars in town. Luckily, Champps also has an immense kitchen that can keep up with the demand at these large-scale events, so you can order wings and beers to your heart's delight, without having to wait for the fourth quarter for them to arrive. And if you're having a party, platters of wings start at only $9.99 a dozen.
Lucky's Pub (801 St. Emanuel, 713-522-2010)
Lucky's is the only place in town with a 21-foot, high-definition projection screen. And if that doesn't suit your Super Bowl needs, there are 50 other TVs to choose from. But while the wings are great, the place also gets crowded for events like this, so call ahead to reserve seats for your friends. Ordering for a party? Lucky's has a full catering menu that starts at $12.95 a person.
Little Bitty Burger Barn (5503 Pinemont, 713-683-6700)
I have been warned that LBBB's Nitro wings are not for the faint of heart, but never fear: If you can't handle the heat, the Burger Barn has 10 other flavors to choose from including Cajun and Creamy Garlic. Place your order today, though, because half of Houston will be gunning for these wings. They're that good.
Beaucoup Bar & Grill (3012 Old Spanish Trail, 713-747-5100)
There's a good reason we named this little joint Best Cajun Restaurant in last year's Best of Houston awards, and it's not just because of the ridiculous crawfish bread. The wings here come in 11 flavors, including Jerk and three different kinds of BBQ sauce, and start at $5.50 for a half dozen. The 50-piece bucket of wings is where it's at for a party, though, for only $35.
Petrol Station (985 Wakefield, 713-957-2875)
Yes, the best beer bar in town has wings. This is supposed to be a secret, so...shh, or something. And although I haven't had them myself, reliable sources say they're among the best in the whole city. I'm not surprised, though, as I've never had a single shred of bad food here. Bonus: You can probably avoid the more sports-inclined Super Bowl crowd here, tucked away in a quiet Oak Forest neighborhood.
Rudyard's (2010 Waugh, 713-521-0521)
The Buffalo wings at the "living room of Montrose" are as simple as Rudyard's itself: five wings for $4, ten wings for $8, available in one flavor only. But that's the beauty of this place, where you can also pretty much guarantee a much more laid back crowd than your typical Super Bowl bar. I watched the World Cup here and was able to simultaneously carry on a conversation without yelling. That might not be your cup of tea, but I was in heaven.
Niko Niko's (2520 Montrose, 713-528-4976)
People that I trust implicitly swear by Niko Niko's honey chicken wings -- and the non-traditional wings (served with blue cheese) would make a great addition to a non-traditional Super Bowl spread, especially if you decided to go full-Greek with it. The wings are $9.70 a dozen in the restaurant, but a lot cheaper if you order off the catering menu in bulk.
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Buffalo Wild Wings (multiple locations)
This granddaddy of sports/wings bars can be found all over town, making it much easier to acquire both wings and a chair to watch the game in. You can go with either traditional or boneless wings here (pro-tip: don't order boneless wings unless you're a five-year-old girl) and choose from a whopping 14 flavors. My favorite is Hot. I'm a traditionalist like that. Half a dozen wings are $4.99, while a bucket of 50 goes for just under $34.
Hooters (multiple locations)
Like at Little Bitty Burger Barn and Buffalo Wild Wings, pre-ordering your wings at the famous Hooters is strongly recommended. Unless, of course, you want to just catch the game there while you ogle the pretty girls, using the wings as a mere excuse. We don't judge here. Hooters' equally famous wings come in 10, 20 or 50-wing platters with eight sauces to choose from. Order the 3 Mile Island if you're looking to impress someone...just make sure you don't touch your eyes or any other orifices for at least a week afterward. That shit burns.