Dec 1, 2022 - Food and Drink

In search of Boston's best Buffalo wings

The classic pile of bird body parts. Photo: Jonathan Wiggs/Getty Images

Deehan here. In honor of the Patriots playing the Buffalo Bills tonight, I went searching for Boston's best Buffalo wings.

To find the most authentic wings, I took along a friend born and raised in Buffalo, N.Y., who knows a thing or two about frying and saucing bird parts. After a thorough research process (asking Twitter) we decided to check out the three most recommended Boston-area bars.

The Pub's charred offerings. Photo: Mike Deehan/Axios
Stop 1: The Pub in Somerville

Hightail it over here before the Ball Square Green Line stop opens up across the street and this divey-but-delicious bar and grill gets mobbed by newcomers.

What sets the Pub's wings apart from the rest of the flock is that after being fried and sauced, they're finished off on the grill for a nice char.

  • The grilling dries up the sauce a bit, but the flavor sticks, even if they are a bit too salty.
  • Our official Buffalo Man judge said they could have been fried a bit more for a firmer crisp.
  • Spice level was not too hot and not too mild. Just right by Buffalo standards.
  • The wings were meaty, maybe even a bit too big since a small order got us about 15 wings for $18.

Rating: A solid 3.0 Bruce Smiths from the judges.

Fresh takeout at Buff's. Photo: Mike Deehan/Axios
Stop 2: Buff's in Newton

Next up is the overwhelming winner of the unofficial Twitter poll.

These were the most traditional of the bunch, with a just-right spiciness level.

  • The sauce didn't quite coat the wing the way it should and, again, they could have been fried crispier.
  • We got seven meaty drumsticks but only three "flat" wings in the $14.50 order.

Rating: A notch above at 3.5 Jim Kellys.

A whole 'nother ballgame at The Publick House. Photo: Mike Deehan/Axios
Stop 3: The Publick House in Brookline

The last stop was a curveball: The $14 sriracha Buffalo wings aren't getting any points for Buffalo orthodoxy, but they should be on your plate if you find yourself here.

  • The sriracha sauce was spicy, sweet and complex. It made us curious about how it would taste on cauliflower.
  • Since these wings were roasted in the oven instead of deep-fried, there was no crispiness to speak of.
  • The seven wings we got were the beefiest boys yet, but were once again too salty. Do we just raise saltier chickens in New England?

Rating: According to our experts, 3.0 Andre Reeds.

Final judgment: We haven't found Boston's most traditional Buffalo wing yet, but we'll keep looking.

What they're saying: "Nothing like the real thing, but Greater Boston watering holes have a lot to offer," said our expert Buffalonian.

Proof of authenticity. Photo: Mike Deehan/Axios

What's next: Should the search continue? Reply and tell us.

  • After all, the Pats play Buffalo again Jan. 8 in the season closer so there's plenty of opportunity for research.

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Boston.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Boston stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Boston.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more