Great Moments in Chicken Culinary History- page 7 | History | Smithsonian
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(Branislav Senic / Alamy)

Great Moments in Chicken Culinary History

Where did these six poultry-based dishes (with one imposter) get their start?

Buffalo Wings

Buffalo Wings
(Branislav Senic / Alamy)
Though buffalo wings were invented just over four decades ago, there is some contention over their origins. We know one fact for certain: the spicy chicken wings are named for their hometown, Buffalo, NY. Established wisdom says the first plate of wings was served in 1964 at a family-owned restaurant in Buffalo called the Anchor Bar. According to Anchor Bar’s website, the owner’s wife, Teressa Bellissimo, invented the dish to feed her son Dominic’s friends, deep frying the wings usually used for chicken stock and smothering them with a secret tangy hot sauce. But another Buffalo man, John Young, claimed credit to the New Yorker’s Calvin Trillin in 1980. Young pointed out that the African American community had long eaten chicken wings, and that he had concocted a spicy sauce called “mambo sauce” to spread over them. Regardless of who the true creator was, the City of Buffalo proudly claimed the dish, declaring July 29, 1977, to be Chicken Wing Day and spreading the buffalo wing gospel to the rest of the country.

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