The third annual Best Wings in Brooklyn Competition will be held at Greenpoint’s Red Star Bar this Saturday, February 25, in association with the NY Waterway’s East River Ferry.
The event is free to the public, with free wings all day long, beginning at 2 p.m. Red Star promises that wing aficionados won’t be disappointed as the borough’s purveyors "throw their wing into the ring" for the coveted title, bragging rights, and some well-deserved attention.
And though the long lines to get in comes with the territory, Nick D’Arienzo, the event coordinator, said that the bar will raffle off VIP tickets via their Twitter account, @redstarny, which will give lucky winners a break from waiting on line.
“We’ll also have a Twitter contest every half hour to pick people from the line that day," he said. "If you correctly answer one of the trivia questions, we’ll get you in.”
Visitors can conveniently travel to the event by taking the East River Ferry, stopping in Greenpoint at India Street, only blocks from the corner of West Street and Greenpoint Avenue where the bar is located.
In its first year, roughly 800 people showed up to sample the free wings. In its second year, about 1,400 showed up. This year, the bar is expecting about 2,000 visitors. And they say Twitter has helped spread the word.
“There’s a lot of buzz,” D’Arienzo said. “People are talking about it on Twitter and it’s interesting because 8,000 people at once are finding out about the contest and it prompts even more trash-talking amongst the participants.”
Culled from more than 40 nominees – solicited via local bloggers and area foodies – these formidable competitors have been acknowledged by both “The Best Wings in Brooklyn Competition” and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz to be among the best of the best when it comes to chicken wings in the Borough of Kings.
The inaugural 2010 champion, Super Wings of Crown Heights, along with neighborhood favorites like Bonnie's Grill from Park Slope, Mulholland’s from Williamsburg, and last year’s defending champs Life Cafe Nine83 from Bushwick, join the fray again, as do newcomers 773 Lounge from Ditmas Park, Lone Star from Bay Ridge, and The Dram Shop Bar from Park Slope.
The competition originated in Greenpoint and offers two prizes: the People’s Choice Award (tallied by collecting the paper ballots from the nearly 2,000 attendees on hand) and the Judges’ Award, given by a consensus vote on the part of the bar’s five-member judging panel.
The presentation of both the Judges’ Award and the People’s Choice Award takes place at 7 p.m., and will be presided over by Borough President Marty Markowitz.
A portion of the proceeds from the event will be donated to the Dr. Theodore Atlas Foundation’s Boxing Program, “Atlas Cops & Kids.” The program began in 2010 along with the NYC Cops and Kids program – both out of necessity when the PAL of New York shut down all boxing gyms in the city.
The primary goal of “Atlas Cops & Kids” is to teach inner-city children discipline and self-respect through boxing.