Wandering the streets of Red Bank, hometown to Kevin Smith and the Clerks empire, I came across a nice corner bar that claimed to have “the best wings in town.” Seeing how it was right around lunchtime, I popped in to see if Red Bank can do to wings what it has done for comedic screenwriters.
The Walt Street Pub has plenty of space inside and out, but I chose to sit at the bar because they had The Chew on one of the TVs (which I thought was cool because maybe it shows that they ARE that into good food and the way of the culinary arts… or maybe it was just by chance, but I’d like to think otherwise). It was a friendly place where mostly everyone I saw knew each other, and the bartender seemed to make every last customer feel comfortable and at ease. So much so that I even watched him inflate a balloon for a little boy sitting outside with his father. Ahhh, it warms the soul just like the wings that I was about to order would, hopefully, warm my mouth.
This pub offers a 12, 17, and 30 count basket with either Mild, Hot, or “Killer Death” (which I’m going out on a limb here by guessing that it is supposed to be really hot). So, I went with the 12 Hot wing basket with the “Killer Death” on the side, and as soon as the last word left my lips, the barkeep had already placed down a bunch of napkins and a paper plate for the bones. This makes me happy because it shows that they understand the needs of a wing eater. And after a beer or two, my buffalo wings were ready for me to consume so I could make use of those amenities.
Right off the bat these things looked awesome and smelled great too. I should know the smell by now because I’ve been enjoying it from other wing-eating patrons while waiting for mine to arrive. Nothing gets you hungrier for wings than smelling them ahead of time. The wings were lightly breaded and the meat was pretty tender and juicy. But the main thing that made these wings stand out was the sauce they used. It was a house blend that focused around a more sharp peppery mix along with something sweet like a Worcestershire sauce or similar. Either way, it was a nice change of pace from the standard buffalo style. These things mixed both the sweet and the heat and had me popping them like crazy. There was more good news on top of that as they gave me three extra wings (Woohoo!!) which allowed me to dunk some of them in the “Killer Death” to see how death-killery it really was.
The “Killer Death” looked like a sandy molasses as it slowly poured out on each wing. When I took a few bites it didn’t really kill me with the heat, but if I sat and let it stand in my mouth I could feel it creeping up. This stuff got really hot, but it was not that palatable with its gritty texture, and for that reason, I had to stop. Even though the “Hot” wasn’t that hot, it was comfortable enough for me to choose that for the remaining two and complete my course.
The Walt Street Pub is a great spot to swing in and get some good wings with some good people. The sauce was the winner as it offered a different style of Buffalo that kept true to the roots, but gave a special sweetness that made them stand out. If you find yourself near Red Bank and are looking for some good wings, I hope you give them a try and let me know your thoughts… hopefully it’s a nice day and you can take advantage of their outside seating… Bonus!