Delectable nooks and crannies
Wings City5555 Sky Pkwy.
Sacramento, CA 95823
There’s a chance you’ve never even accidentally passed by Wings City, located on the corner of Sky Parkway and 65th Expressway, because the exterior seems nondescript.
But once you walk inside, it’s instantaneously noticeable that the owners of Wings City have invested love and labor into their dream. Wings City is the first independently owned chicken wing eatery in South Sacramento. Childhood friends Vay Lu and Tommy San, both South Sac natives, opened its doors in November 2018.
The inside is spacious and modern. There’s a newly painted Sacramento Kings mural by artist Kristina Letson. But the Kings aren’t just in the artwork; during the NBA season, they’re on at least one of the many flat-screen TVs. It’s definitely a place where you can bring a large group of people, have some wings, a couple of beers and watch a game.
My go-to is the family pack ($26): 20 bone-in wings in three flavors (Lemon Pepper, 7-Spice, Orange Chicken), fries, veggie sticks and your choice of two different dips. Order the wings breaded, for an additional $1. This ensures that they stay crispy much longer under the weight of each sauce. And more than likely, you’ll want to try the sweet-and-spicy Mango Habanero, the unique Peanut Butter & Jelly (wings tossed in peanut sauce, topped with grape jelly and crushed peanuts) and the Cheesy Money (wings topped with crushed Cheetos, sour cream and scallions). The last option tastes like a Cool Ranch Doritos version of Cheetos. The breaded wings are so satisfyingly crispy, and all of those little jaggedy nooks and crannies are the perfect vehicle for dipping into a large bucket of Wings City’s house-made blue cheese sauce.
The real sleeper on the menu: the Wings City Nachos ($12.99). Ay, caramba! The secret to this dish is, what I suspect: thick-cut and deep-fried tortilla chips. They’re crispy and tender, but can withstand the weight of the warm cheese sauce and rib-eye bits. The meat has that addictive flavor of both slightly sweet and umami. It’s topped with pico de gallo, but leave it off as it guarantees soggy city, pronto. If you’re not feeling tortilla chips, you can get the same components on top of cross-cut fries if you order the Wing City Fries ($12.99). Also, don’t sleep on the tender Garlic Noodles topped with Parmesan cheese ($6.89).
Wings City is the type of all-purpose space that makes sense. You can have two completely different experiences, but it doesn’t seem discombobulated. Go early in the afternoon when there’s plenty of space to stretch out and the music isn’t too loud so diners can speak with the owner and the employees.
If you go in the evening, there are usually families relaxing together, watching sports and sharing a meal. This is a place where all the little touches and nuances go a long way. The customer service is so personable; there’s no rush, so you can actually enjoy your time, food and company. Everything is made to order. They even hand cut their celery and carrots. In fact, the food is so craveable, that even when I can’t make it into the restaurant, I’ll order through DoorDash.