Mark (mhaithaca) wrote,

Silly person. Buffalos don't have wings! (213.8)

What do you call wings? Let's give you the benefit of the doubt right off and assume that you don't call them "Buffalo wings," since, as noted above, buffalos don't have wings.

Wing Night at Rogue's"Chicken wings" seems like a viable option, since that is, after all, what we're talking about. It just seems redundant, since "wings" covers you in any audience with even a vague cultural awareness of the last few decades. I'm pretty sure that's also what you'll find listed on the menu in such eateries as Duff's and the Anchor Bar. (If the menu says "Buffalo," it's likely only as part of the address.)

"Hot wings" has become awfully common, though I'm struck by the frequent odd pronunciation, which makes it sound like one word with the first syllable stressed, as opposed to a pair of words where one modifies the other. I just listened to a restaurant review podcast that talked about "hotwings" at a place that I know serves wings, but in a form that I'd consider sharply different from the Buffalo style I'd associate with that monoword form. One of the series of quirky, animated Guinness commercials, too, talks about "hotwings" as one of their examples of something that's just as "Brilliant!" as their innovation of Guinness Draught in a can.

Moreover, "hot wings" doesn't really cover the surprising variety of sauces and other coatings available at many wing establishments. Deep fried chicken wings tossed in sweet and spicy chilli sauce might qualify, technically, but it's still not quite what you'd have in mind if you wanted wings.

Why do I have such a problem with the "Buffalo wings" misnomer? It's mostly that it's so unnecessary, but also that empirical evidence suggests that the farther the wings from the Buffalo-style experience you were looking for, the more likely the name "Buffalo" will be casually and callously tossed in to describe them. (Does the same thing apply to a "Philly cheesesteak"? Probably. "Cheesesteak" is adequate verbiage; if the purveyor uses Amoroso rolls baked in Philadelphia and has Whiz available, your odds of a good experience are pretty good.)

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