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Price for a pound of wings in a restaurant?

I've noticed the gradual increase from $8-9 up to $11-12 over the last few years in my neck of the woods (Alberta, Canada). Once a week most places have "Wings Night" where they're about $0.35 each. Being cheap I usually don't order wings unless it's on one of those nights. It's made me curious, though, what the average for a pound of wings in different places? Is there usually a cheap wing night or an AYCE night?

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  1. Haven't had wings OUT in a while... they're usually pretty small?? Bought a package of Perdue "wingettes" today... much bigger/meatier. Twelve to a package for $6+. They're brining right now and will be floured/seasoned and into HOT oven tomorrow till crispy.

    16 Replies
    1. re: kseiverd

      I've found doing Buffalo Thighs is a better/cheaper option.

      1. re: grampart

        With proper marketing, I expect to see Necks and Bootys being touted as "the next great thing."

        It's all in the marketing. I think that P T Barnum had some observations on such, but could be wrong.

        The same thing has happened with some seafood items - what were once called "trash fish," and used as cut-bait, now appears, under new names, on many menus.


        1. re: Bill Hunt

          In another thread, there was a discussion about how hard it is to even find necks and backs in supermarkets these days. They've gone the way of the free bones for your dog.

          1. re: ratgirlagogo

            Have you looked for turkey thighs? Next to impossible to find now. No trouble in the past.

            1. re: Nanzi

              A lot depends on where you shop and what part of the country you live in. They're very common in the supers where we are (Seattle Area) and other parts of the West Coast. Perhaps less so elsewhere.

              We also have access at one of our suppliers to boneless skinless thighs the size of Briskets, and we prepare them as such. But you have to buy 40 pounds at a time.

              1. re: Nanzi

                Wegmans, turkey parts all year round.

                1. re: Nanzi

                  $1.59 pound fresh available all the time in our supermarkets. I buy them regularly for our dogs

                  1. re: bagelman01

                    Great price, here they are $2.79/lb. I have been buying thighs and wings for stock every other week. I'm glad to have a place that serves turkey parts year round, I much prefer turkey to chicken.

                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                      I saw them in my Walmart today for $2.29 lb fresh. That's a buy cause they're normally $3 to $4.00 a pound..

                2. re: ratgirlagogo

                  You know, I use pork neck bones in my sauce, and I can't get them anymore at my local grocery. I finally asked, and the butcher said the reason is that now that Smithfield foods is not longer a U.S. owned company, all of the non standard parts are being shipped to China. He said they are not even available for him to special order. I am bothered by that.

                3. re: Bill Hunt

                  Not always marketing, sometimes tastes change, or people simply realize something is good. Lobster was once considered fit only for servants, for example.

                  1. re: carolinadawg

                    I was speaking to a guy from New Brunswick (Atlantic Canada) a few weeks ago. His grandfather thought lobsters weren't even good enough for servants (not that he had any...).
                    He only used them to fertilize the garden.

                    1. re: porker

                      Honestly, I highly doubt that you were told the truth by that guy from New Brunswick. Maybe his ancestor back 200 years ago during colonial times may have thought that. Lobsters have been highly regarded as a delicacy since the 1800's and sought after enough that there was an official trap fishery for them since the 1850's.

                      1. re: JMF

                        "...We knew that the lobster being sold as pricey and special was until recently considered barely edible by Maritimers themselves. Children of earlier generations were shamed when forced to bring a lobster sandwich to school; lobster was used to fertilize farmers’ fields. If you had asked how we knew these things, we would not have been able to say—we just knew. The “facts” as we understood them were not usually shared through fully developed stories but came to us as brief “generalization narratives” that were part of our common knowledge...."
                        - from "Lobster Tales: Narratives of Food, Past, and Place in Maritime Canada"
                        by Diane Tye
                        in Cuizine: The Journal of Canadian Food Cultures / Cuizine : revue des cultures culinaires au Canada

                        So yeah, you're probably correct. Such stories and legend are part of Maritime culture and most people likely think it a time of their grandparents.

                    2. re: carolinadawg

                      Servants and prisoners, according to this site!


                      But some of the indentured servants rebelled, and started insisting that it be written into their contracts that they'd be fed lobster no more than three times a week!!

                4. ------

                  Once a week most places have "Wings Night" where they're about $0.35 each.


                  Holy crap.

                  Here in the midwest USA I'm paying $0.60 USD a wing(Bone in) on wing special nites on the low end.

                  35 cents CDN is awesome.

                  Since all of the national chains ahve doted ove wings for years, the price has risen according to demand.
                  I'll have to check my Sysco or GFS prices to see current price but this time of year usually brings the demand and the always so-called lack of supply usually means an upcharge.

                  Happens every year.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: jjjrfoodie

                    Bar on the corner has a $0.25 wing night. I think it's Tuesday. (Queens, NYC)

                  2. $10.49 for 10 wings at our local spot, so $12.60 for a dozen. Wing prices have really increased in past years at the stores.

                    1. I think that the price will depend on how many wings are slated to be thrown away, after butchering the chickens. Then, the seller will factor in the market (how many folk can be induced to pay obscene amounts of money for wings) will bear.

                      Supply and demand at work.


                      5 Replies
                      1. re: Bill Hunt

                        Well, yes, but these days there are never any slated to be thrown away. The wings, as noted below, are some of the most-in-demand pieces around. At Costco most fresh chicken, whole and parts, can be had for about a buck a pound, but the wings are more than two bucks a pound ($2.19 last time I checked).

                        And that's a good price. If I want to pay less than that I need to buy the frozen pieces in forty pound boxes. Which is a lot to go through, even at my house, as we don't actually do chicken at our restaurant.

                        1. re: acgold7

                          Wings cost more than breast tenderloins where I live.

                          I mean the raw stuff at the grocery store... when I was a kid, wings were a throw-away item. Of course back then the breast wasn't half the size of the entire bird, either.

                        2. re: Bill Hunt

                          Just wanted to ask if you have again secured Rodan for your Superbowl party.

                          1. re: ratgirlagogo

                            Turkey wings do in fact cost less per pound, but as they're about a pound each, the experience is somewhat different. Also they need to be pre-cooked before their trip through the deep fryer for crisping and then saucing.

                            Modesty prevents me from mentioning where you will be able to get them for this year's Super Bowl if you are in the Seattle Area.

                            1. re: acgold7

                              I sold Buffalo style turkey wings in the past. Called 'em Pterodactyl wings and people always asked where I got such BIG chicken wings - they didn't buy the Pterodactyl thing.

                        3. It used to be cheap on wings nights in the restos that offered them Over the years I noticed the prices have gone up to silly levels. I admit I like 'em at pubs as chat-up appies, but I only saw increasing prices and shrinking wings (or drummettes).

                          1. I've also noticed in recent years in some Chinese and Japanese (izakaya) restaurants there are "chicken knees", usually fried in some way, garnished and served as appies. Just cartilage, like chicken feet at dim sum, 'cept the knees are crunchy and ok to eat.

                            On a digression, we went to Red Robins over the holidays, first time in like 10 years. My old faves were their popcorn shrimp, and the mighty tower of onion rings. Holy cow, prices were literally shocking. The rings tower was Cdn$12 ! I remember paying like $5-6 back in the days.

                            Back to wings, during university days we've had $0.10 wing nights at certain local pubs/taverns. Then again, crude oil was like US$30 a barrel then.

                            1. Interesting that in Western Canada, restaurants offer to sell you wings by the pound (seems that conversion to metric isn't really working too well <VBG>). Here on the east coast of the US, wings are generally offered by the order (small or large) by the dozen, by count (6, 9, 12, 20) or by the each.
                              Local pubs/bars tend to have cheap wing nights on Tuesdays or Wednesdays when bar traffic is light (no Monday night football) and prices range from 25 cents to 50 cents. My 25yo daughter tends to meet her girlfriends on Tuesday wing nights for a cheap girls night out.

                              Diners do have to beware that many places say the offering is wings, but actually are either serving wing pieces (one joint) or wings that are missing the small joint with the tip. If you're reciving wing pieces, that 50 cent wing is actually costing $1 per wing, no bargain!

                              My daughter's other observation (from the bar/resto she serves in on the weekends) the establishment orders in smaller wings for the promotional nights.

                              1. Wegmans is at $7.99 a pound.Eat in or take out from their steam table/food court.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: Raffles

                                  For the benefit of the OP in Alberta, Canada:

                                  Wegman's is a supermarket, NOT a bar or restaurant

                                  1. re: bagelman01

                                    I am sorry if I did not make it clear that Wegmans has a food court where you may sit down and eat, self serve of course. Some of their food courts are HUGE btw. In some locations, those food courts offer far better food than stand alone restaurants.

                                    1. re: Raffles

                                      Many supermarkets have food courts and seating, but they are still supermarkets.....
                                      That's why I posted the info for the benefit of the OP.

                                      Self serve from the hot food bar at a supermarket should not be compared to waiter/waitress service in a sit down restaurant/bar/pub.

                                      Also, it makes sense that the supermarket sells hot food by the pound, while restaurants generally don't (unless it's lobster). At Wegman's or any other supermarket hot food bar, your pound may contain many different foods, all at the same price. and FWIW, the going rate for wings in supermarket hot food bars here in Connecticut is $6.99 lb.

                                      1. re: bagelman01

                                        plus, wings off a steam table really don't compare with freshly prepared wings. That's like having Italian at OG.

                                2. To echo some of the remarks...
                                  In the Montreal area, you never see wings by the pound. Its almost always by the count.

                                  Cheap wing nights are fewer than years past.
                                  In the late 80s, early 90s, 10c wing nights were common. The prices edged up and up and up over the years.
                                  I haven't been out for a "wing night" in many years, but would be surprised to find them as cheap as 50c each today.
                                  "Regular" prices run maybe 75c to $1.25 per wing piece.

                                  Its rare to find 3-segment wings (drummette/flap/tip) in these parts. They're usually served as a mix of individual drummettes and flaps (no tips). Most places purchase their wings individually quick frozen (IQF) and most suppliers only carry individual IQF units (drummy and flap).

                                  I sold a few buffalo wings as part of a summer business in the 90s. Other chicken parts (thighs, breasts) rose in price, but nowhere near as much as wing prices which skyrocketed. This was due solely to demand.
                                  Even then prices were volatile; I'd sign a kind of futures-deal with Flamingo (large Canadian poultry company) at the start of each season to help with prices.

                                  Appropro of almost nothing, I heard "pig wings" mentioned on television the other week and they sounded interesting. I snooped around the net and found them to be a cut from the pig's back leg. They cut the fibula bone into parts with surrounding meat intact. When cooked, the meat shrinks back a bit, leaving a "popsicle" type of meat and bone, kinda like the chicken drummette.
                                  I haven't seen them in local restos yet, but they are available from Ontario pork suppliers. They look pretty good too, hope to try 'em soon.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: porker

                                    Pork wings are great, so much meat. And precooked if I recall, just a quick drop in the fryer, which makes it easy to slam out.

                                    Here in the US they mostly come from Farmland, as a matter I'm pretty sure they are trademarked. Other pork companies make something similar but have to call them "drummies" or something like that. They hit the market at least 5 or 6 years ago, maybe longer. They're expensive though, which is why they're not as popular as chicken wings. More of a high end app.

                                    1. re: porker

                                      So it's "when pigs fly" ....... ? [grin]

                                      1. re: LotusRapper

                                        Their original ads did feature a cartoon of a pig with wings, here's a more recent one actually showing the "wings"...there are so good and now I'm craving some.

                                    2. I don't buy them myself but "atomic wings" in manhattan has 10 for $9.95. Which sounds expensive.....i'm sure the fratty bars have happy hour specials that are a better price

                                      1. Friend who used to own a wings restaurant announced one day that wings were now the most expensive part of the chicken- and BTW it was about three weeks before the Superbowl. Said the same thing the next year, too.

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: EWSflash

                                          Yah, I was going to point out that here in the States we're coming up on Super Sunday. Biggest wing day of the year, and when demand jumps, the prices soar. And afterward, somehow they never quite come all the way back down.

                                          1. re: eclecticsynergy

                                            I thought there was more of a run on Velveeta for this year's superbowl...

                                            1. re: porker

                                              That's more easily renewable, though. But the Rotel...

                                        2. At Wing Dome, a local chain in and around Seattle, they're $7.99 a pound, with your choice of sauces. Their wings are 7-10 per pound, and they're pretty good. They have a daily specials--Mondays, wings are $4.99 a pound with a beverage purchase.

                                          And of course, if you can eat seven of their very, VERY hot "7 ALARM WINGS" in seven minutes, with no beverages, they're free! But a whole lot more people end up paying for those wings than the few who get them for nothing--and the ones I've seen look like they wish they'd never, ever tried it.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: MsMaryMc

                                            Hi, Mary:

                                            Yup, Wing Dome in Seattle is $7.99/lb.

                                            I didn't count the pieces the last pound I bought there, but it had to be more than 10 to the pound. They were laughably small.

                                            The Boxcar Tavern has decent-sized wings at 50 cents a pop. But I'm at a loss for a place that serves truly meaty drummettes and wings in Seattle anymore.


                                          2. As we note above, wholesale prices of wings have skyrocketed, so much so that some wholesalers (and consequently restaurants) are offering "boneless wings" -- actually punched out pieces of either real or formed white meat that can actually cost less than real wings.

                                            Right now the wholesale price of whole fresh wings is around $2.20 a pound, and is actually around the same for the sectioned frozen pieces.

                                            So using the standard industry pricing formulas, you'd expect to pay between six and 12 bucks a pound for wings, or about a dollar or two per wing, depending upon size. I've seen some really massive wings in our area where you might be paying a buck for a wing *piece* rather than a whole wing, or you could be paying a lot less for a tiny one like they sell at Domino's. It all depends where they get them from. I've seen the sections from one to five ounces each.

                                            They are hugely increasing in popularity and especially so around this time of year. I actually bought a bag for today's games where the drummettes were the size of small drumsticks. 10 pounds from Restaurant Depot for $21.90.

                                            5 Replies
                                            1. re: acgold7

                                              I despise the term "boneless wings". As you mention, its just a type of nugget. No way does it compare to the animalistic satisfaction of gnawing real meat off real bone and the meat itself doesn't compare.
                                              However, I think the name does have marketing value; there are people who despise getting their fingers dirty and think eating wings are barbaric. A "boneless wing" is a great solution for these folks.

                                              1. re: porker

                                                Sometimes it's not about getting fingers dirty, or being barbaric. I noticed that my 25 yo daughter and 31 yo nephew only order boneless wings................

                                                After a discussion with each of them I realized that they are both left handed and have poor knife skilss and feel self-consious eating things that require a knife in public. Aftre discussion with my wife and SIL, it seems that both our daughter and nephew will grab 'real' wings at home and eat them with their fingers on a chaise by the pool or in the yard, BUT if they are at the table with others they pass on the real wings.

                                                1. re: bagelman01

                                                  Thats what I mean; wings and chicken (like pizza) is meant to be eaten with bare hands and fingers in private *or* public.
                                                  Lotsa people get all freaky on this. Perhaps "barbaric" isn't the correct word, but if people are shy to do this in public, they feel some sort of shame or self-consciousness.

                                                2. re: porker

                                                  A few years ago I was at Korean wing place and watched two Asian girls in their late teens eat wings so properly and well mannered it blew me away. They used chop sticks and managed to get every piece of meat off the bone neat as can be. What blew me away was when they ate the "pins", the two bones were still attached, but completely bare when they were done.

                                                  1. re: JMF

                                                    You had me at ...
                                                    ahh never mind.

                                              2. At my favorite wing joint in the area, Jack's, the "special" price for wings used to be 25c/wing for at least 10 years.

                                                In the last 3 years though they've had to raise the special price three times. First to 35c, then 40. Now it's 5 bucks for 10 wings including sauces/celery. (Prior prices did not include anything extra).

                                                These are big fat meaty wings, not the crappy little ones or the cheap battered ones.

                                                As far as regular prices, I'm seeing exactly what OP mentioned, going from 8-9 to 11-12.

                                                1. A restaurant I went to last week charged $10/pound. This was in Park City, UT.