Oct 182017

This is part of an ongoing series reviewing hot wings in the Huntsville area. Visit #HsvHotWings for a comprehensive linked list.

(Original review material below that has been updated is shown in strikethrough. New material is noted as such.)

My friend Rachel and I visited Tim’s Cajun Kitchen recently for lunch. I’ve had a lot of great meals at Tim’s—they have delectable crawfish étouffée—but I’d never tried Tim’s Famous Hot Wings, which was my aim on this trip.

Tim’s Famous Hot Wings come ten for $9.76, and there is no heat level selection. (The fries in the photograph are not included in that price.) Our server offered dressing, but when I asked she said no celery would accompany, so I passed on the bleu cheese.

From the October 2017 visit.

From the February 2017 visit.

Quality: 2/10. My wings were reasonably sized, and snuck under that magical $1 barrier. Unfortunately, they had also suffered the substantial ravages of excessive temperature. They were burned, and easily the driest wings I’ve yet been served on this #HsvHotWings adventure. (Updated October 2017: 5/10. These were better, with an occasional, within-tolerance char mark. They were also juicier. Alas, they were rubbery in spots.)

Flavor: 1/10. These wings taste like smoke. There is an undercurrent of smoke. A little whisper of smoke finishes them out. There is a slight aftertaste of sweet…smoke. Really, the smokiness was absolutely overwhelming. The occasional hint of sauce I tasted seemed like it had a sweetish buffalo vibe. While well-smoked wings are delightful, these tasted about 85% of the way to a house fire. I didn’t finish them. (Updated October 2017: 4/10. The flavor is improved, but there is still nearly nothing here but smoke, and a lot of it.)

Heat: 2/10. Almost nothing here. A bit of black pepper is evident. There’s an infrequent buffalo/Louisiana red pepper wisp that vanishes so quickly, you’re left to wonder if it was a gustatory mirage.

As many fine things as I’ve eaten at Tim’s, these wings were disappointingly jarring indeed. I’m hoping this was an anomaly. I’ll put Tim’s down for a validation visit.

(Updated October 2017: On this validation visit I found a better product, but still an unambiguously mediocre one. This is just not a strong play for Tim’s. If you want smoked wings, there are much better ones a few blocks north.)

 Posted by at 1:25 pm
Jul 102017

This is part of an ongoing series reviewing hot wings in the Huntsville area. Visit #HsvHotWings for a comprehensive linked list.

Ale’s Kitchen is the restaurant portion of the new Straight to Ale facility at Campus No. 805 on Clinton Ave. Tommy, Trent, and I took in a weekday lunch there.

The restaurant is full service, with one wing size (an advertised one pound of wings plus fresh-cut fries) available for $13.63. This ended up being six drums and three flats, with a goodly portion of fries and a cup of ranch. The hottest of six varieties is xXx-tra hot Diablo, so that’s what I ordered. Our server John did a good job.

Quality: 6/10. The wings were of mostly consistent temperature, with a couple of hot spots. No excessive fattiness, but a rubbery bite here and there. Within tolerance on size, but toward the small end.

Flavor: 5/10. Some people would have salted these. There is a sweetness that hits early, followed by a botanical pepper vibe. Neither sensation is unpleasant, but the two flavors don’t really intermingle or have anything else to do with each other, so the overall taste is more muddled than anything. A little culinary TLC in the interest of a consistent gustatory message would be a good thing.

Heat: 6/10. There are a few fireworks here, hitting pretty much full-strength by the end of the first wing. The heat continues throughout the meal, and then persists for about 10 minutes of afterburn. I would say red pepper is responsible for most of the front, with perhaps a bit of a C. chinense cultivar on the back side, though I never specifically identified it. I was never uncomfortable, but I did apply ice water a time or two. Definitely hot enough to goose the uninitiated.

Straight to Ale at Campus No. 805 is a nifty place to visit, with marvelous ambience, numerous craft beers, and several good things on the menu. I finished these wings, but there is definitely room to up their game.

 Posted by at 1:08 pm
Jun 052017

This is part of an ongoing series reviewing hot wings in the Huntsville area. Visit #HsvHotWings for a comprehensive linked list. BJ’s opened a year or two ago in Bridge Street, right in my work neighborhood. It’s a center-bar place with its own beers, and both the experience and the menu are elevated just a […]

 Posted by at 12:53 pm
Apr 292017

This location of this restaurant is closed. This is part of an ongoing series reviewing hot wings in the Huntsville area. Visit #HsvHotWings for a comprehensive linked list. Lea had a work reunion this evening at 306 Barbecue in Greenbrier (where the Greenbrier Bar-B-Q, aka “the new Greenbrier,” was located). I went in with a […]

 Posted by at 7:52 pm

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