Given that Wingnut Steve lives in Hanover (well actually it's more illustrious neighbour Tarner) it was a surprise that we hadn't ventured out here before. 2 new entries in Chicken Shed of Shame doesn't forbode well but we did find some surprisingly good wings eslsewhere.....
We started off Wingnuts’ Hanover instalment, at the aptly named ‘Hanover’. After braving the ascent up Mount Hanover, we arrived at the top and were greeted with a great pub and an excellent Friday night atmosphere, the beers were pretty good as well, and this was looking good. The wings however weren’t worth the climb. They did have a good heat, but they had a slimy skin and when asked about provenance the guy told us that he “didn’t know, but was sure they were from a local organic butcher” – yeah course they were mate, that’s what they all say. To be honest, the best thing about them was the elaborate array of bowls for bones and cleaning your fingers that came with them, and we are sad to say that there was a wing left behind on our first venue! L
Heat variety: 0
This is a slick operation and even waiting to be served in what is essentially a takeaway was quite exciting to see how well the staff carried out their tasks. The place was really popular as well, with burger after burger being churned out in seconds. However, this is chicken wing blog and once again the clue is in the name. They had a sweet barbecue sauce that tasted of pure sugar and again these wings had a slimy skin. Seriously, who on earth wants slimy chicken skin out of choice, why do people keep making wings in this way! The best bit was the box they came in and the passionate staff who worked there. Good luck with your business guys, we’re sure your burgers will do well.
Heat variety: 0
A late edition to the planned route and thank goodness it was. The atmosphere is non-existent what with it being a takeaway and the staff were quite rude, but tell you what, they knock out a decent salt and pepper crispy wing. They’re served with loads of nice veg and fresh chilli and Wingnut Elliot couldn’t get enough of them. Is it worth walking up the hill to get them? Probably not, but if you’re walking down the hill then definitely pop in.
Heat variety: 0
The Dover Castle
We love this pub so much. This was the first pub that Wingnut Steve ever had a pint in when he moved to Brighton. This is why it hurts giving this review. Let’s start positively, the wings came with a great chilli sauce and a well-made aioli, but the texture of the wings was crispy in the same way that chicken crisps are crispy. The taste wasn’t great either. Go to this great pub for the atmosphere and beer, but it’s probably worth giving the wings a miss and grabbing some from China Star next door on your way home.
Heat variety: 4.5
As we always say, the clue is in the name of the places we go, as this usually reflects on the wings that they serve. Not this place though, these wings were so dry that there was no way you could actually swallow them. Wings should be a joyful experience, but the experience of eating these was as though you had just run a marathon and quenched your thirst with a bag of sand. We were suspicious that they were even chicken, as it seems impossible that any organic material could be so dry and tasteless. When asked if we spit or swallow, we spat these out!
Heat variety: 0
Chicks Chicken and Pizza
Winner winner chicken dinner! No sorry, by winner, we mean winner of possible the ropiest chicken wing experience, since well, Swallow House! For starters, the staff were really angry and stressed. They say that the cows used for Wagyu beef have no stress and the meat tastes amazing because of this, but much like the staff, these chickens must have been stressed out of their minds judging by the way they tasted. So in summary, they tasted like shit, the staff were angry, the atmosphere was hostile and when we asked about provenance the cook replied “Don’t tell me brother?” – what does that even mean?
Heat variety: 2
AA Charcoal Grill
Like we’ve said before, we have always wanted to find a little gem of a place that nobody has ever heard of that serves up the kind of wings we like. And you know what, we think this may be one of those places. The staff were passionate about their food and interested in our blog, they spoke freely and happily about their chicken and how they prepare it. The chicken was well seasoned and plain barbecued, but it came with some amazing sauces that we would happily dip anything in to (well almost anything). This place is really worth a try, so get yourself down to the Lewes Road. If you don’t know where it is, we imagine they will be the first entry in the phone book, well unless AA1 Charcoal Grill got there first.
Heat variety: 4
Mid-way through the night, guest Wingnut Chappers showed up and was desperate for a good wing. We tried a couple of places, but they weren’t serving, so as treat for him, we went back to where it all began. The Joker was the first place we reviewed and we always said if they could tell us about their provenance they would score really well. Thankfully a very helpful manager told us all about it and they have shot up the league table and rightly so. The wings were as good as they always are and as usual we went for the snake in a basket. This time our guest reviewer Chappers got the Viper wing, and not only did it blow his head off, he nearly lost an eye by somehow getting Viper sauce on his face! It’s a dangerous business being a Wingnut.
Heat variety: 10