BUFFALO (September 2015) – More than 70,000 people from all 50 states and 64 countries attended the National Buffalo Wing Festival at Coca-Cola Field in Buffalo, New York Sept. 5-6.
The festival, which celebrates Buffalo’s quintessential foodstuff, served-up more than 25 tons of wings from more than 30 local, regional, national and international eateries who created more than 120 varieties of wings.
“This was the 14th year for the festival and one that drew a considerable amount of international interest,” Drew Cerza, festival founder, said. “A couple traveled 9,839 miles from Sydney, Australia to attend. Additionally, this was the first year we welcomed an international restaurant serving wings – Randy’s Wing Bar out of London, UK.”
One of the highlights of the weekend for the vendors is competing in the National Sauce-Off. This year’s winners include:
- Festival Favorite: Bonehead’s Wing Bar
- Rookie of the Year: Greene’s Ale House
- Most Creative Sauce: (1) Buffalo Wild Wings, (2) Bonehead’s Wing Bar, (3) Quaker Steak & Lube.
- Best Hot Sauce: (1) Legend Larry’s, (2) Booty’s Wings Burgers & Beers, (3) Slider’s Grill & Bar.
- Best Extra Hot Sauce: (1) RuChDa Wings, (2) Duff’s Famous Wings, (3) Greene’s Ale House.
- Best Medium Sauce: (1) Bocce Club Pizza, (2) Hot Rod Café, (3) Legend Larry’s
- Most Creative Sweet Sauce: (1) Just Pizza & Wing Co., (2) Hard Rock Café, (3) Greene’s Ale House.
- Best Traditional BBQ: (1) Bocce Club Pizza, (2) Brickhouse Tavern & Tap, (3) La Nova.
- Most Creative BBQ: (1) Wing Street, (2) Quaker Steak & Lube, (3) Scallywags Grub & Spirits.
New this year, organizers weaved a “craft” concept throughout the entire weekend’s activities. This meant that festivalgoers enjoyed everything from cold craft beers to craft cocktail demonstrations. Additionally, many of the wing vendors developed unique craft wings and some competed in this new category at the Wing Fest.
First-place winner of the “Best Craft Wing” contest was (716) Wings, which created a wing called “Chicken on Weck.” Second place went to Booty’s Wings Burgers & Beers for their “Et Tu Brut.” And, Duff’s Famous Wings came in third with their ultra-unique “Caramel Crunch” wing.
One of the annual highlights of the festival weekend was the United States Chicken Wing Eating Championshippresented by the Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino and sanctioned by the International Federation of Competitive Eating.
After a major upset at the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest (for which he won 2007-2014), Joey “Jaws” Chestnut came back to Buffalo to defend his title as first place winner of the U.S. Chicken Wing Eating Championship. He was up against relative newcomer Miki Sudo who came to reclaim her 2013 title, which was her first-ever wing-eating event. National favorite and five-time Wingfest World Champion Sonya “The Black Widow” Thomas was also be on hand to battle the field.
After 12 minutes of action-packed pro eating, the winners included:
- First place: Joey “Jaws” Chestnut, 205 wings
- Second place: Miki Sudo, 170 wings in 12 minutes
- Third place: Sonya “The Black Widow” Thomas, 157 wings