Omaha NE 68127
This one will be a bit different from other HitThatDive wing reviews. Why's that you ask...that's simple. My wing order (as most people can tell you) never changes. It's always wings with Buffalo sauce, and if I have my choice between mild, medium or hot...I always go with medium. I am the ultimate creature of habit.
And as for reviewing wings, I think it's important to keep things as consistent as possible to accurately "judge" one wing place against another. Plus, last month I was part of the Omaha World-Herald's "Food Prowl" team trying to find Omaha's best barbecue (good luck with that!) and I learned a few more pointers on how to approach reviewing food...from people who actually know that they're doing!
|Time to try something a little different|
For those wondering how this works, wings are rated in 5 categories for a total potential perfect score of 50. The current reigning champion (by virtue of a committee vote) is The Pheasant with a total score of 48. And, for shits and giggles (mostly to get the shits) the worst score has been the gag-worthy wings at LaVista Keno which flatlined at a 2. TWO? Yeah...they were that bad.
For the sake of this review, Cruisers Bar and Grill can only be judged in four categories because this is the first time ever I'm writing about non-Buffalo wings. And honestly, that won't hurt them too much, because from previous trips there...Buffalo sauce is not their strong suit.
So, with the longest wing review intro in the history of HitThatDive...I give you...Cruisers Garlic Parmesan wings.
|That's actually cheese|
These babies came out smoking hot in about 20 minutes, which is A-OK with me...I ordered them extra crispy just to be safe. They don't really smell all that garlicky...but after realizing that the white specks were in fact parmesan cheese...I was ready to go.
For what Cruisers lacks in a great Buffalo sauce, they sure make up for it with whatever this stuff might be. Keep in mind, this sauce isn't even on the menu, so make sure to ask for it when you're here.
Score: N/A (But I'm telling you, this was a great sauce)
|I should have asked for a plate|
Size: Uniform size in wings ensures that they're all cooked properly. If you throw in some giant pieces, along with a few runts, one of two things will happen. A: The giant pieces will be undercooked (See LaVista Keno about that) or B: The runts will be turned into chewy chicken jerky. Neither of which makes for good wings.
Cruisers serves up some pretty meaty-sized wings. But they are all generally the same size which allows the "skateboards" and the "runners" to come out evenly.
Side Note: Can we all agree on what the two sections of the wing are called? Apparently even people in Buffalo, New York can't agree on this topic. This article made for an interesting read and probably confused the situation even more in my mind.
Final Score: 36* out of 50
* Keep in mind that Cruisers didn't even get points in the sauce category, and even with that hindrance, they scored better than a lot of wing places in the area who are far more well-known. For the record, the sauce easily was an "8" which would have made these clock in at an impressive showing of 44 points.
The garlic parmesan wings took me by surprise, in a good way, mostly because I only eat one flavor of wing sauce (note to self...do I need to expand my bar and grill culinary horizons?) and yet I thoroughly enjoyed these. If you're looking for a change of pace from traditional Buffalo wings, you definitely need to give these a shot. Perhaps you'll be just a pleasantly surprised as I was. Who knew?
Now, back to my regular beat...which Buffalo wings should be next on the list to review...let me know!