Sometimes in life focus is everything: Do one thing really well and forget the rest. Nuttin’ But Wings lives up to its promise and you should take their advice: stick to the great wings.
Nuttin’ But Wings first generated buzz with a location on West Hamilton, just off Clarksville Highway, in Bordeaux. The Nashville Scene first got hot about those wings several years ago and others joined suit. Oddly enough the Bordeaux location didn’t survive. The owners went looking for better wing territory and found it in the college land on Jefferson Street, smack dab in between Fisk and TSU. They have also set up shop near Austin Peay in Clarksville. The success they found in the fryer, and thanks to all those college kids, has propelled them to open joints in Murfreesboro and just recently Memphis. The Bites blog recently got excited about the soon to be opened location at 15th and Charlotte near downtown. They are a burgeoning chain, but with homegrown roots and with some of the better wings in town.
The Jefferson Street location doesn’t look like much on the outside. Inside you’ll find a busy counter area with a couple of tables. Rap and R and B boom out of the stereo, reflecting the college vibe. There’s a bigger room in back with a wide screen TV dialed up to ESPN.
The wings come in the following sauces: B-B-Q, Honey Hot, Honey Gold, Honey Spice, Cajun Seasoned, Nuttin’ But Hot, Country Fried, Lemon Pepper and Garlic Parmesan. While the names may sound like the flavors you have seen in a thousand different wing joints, the sauces are not the same at all. The Honey Hot came highly recommended, so I tried a half and half order with Honey Spice. The first bite told the tale: sweet, tangy, a bit of heat, building in intensity to a pleasant after-burn. Really good. The Honey Spice was also sweet and sassy, but with just a mild tingle and all of the flavor. Sauce can’t stand alone: these wings are average sized, but meaty, fried crispy and moist inside. You can see back into the kitchen and they fry each order as it comes. It may take a few minutes but it’s worth it. The downfall of many a wings restaurant is tough, chewy wings. From what I could tell you won’t have to worry about that at Nuttin’ But Wings. I ordered up blue cheese as part of my usual wing ritual and after one bite I set the blue cheese aside. You wouldn’t want anything to take away from the awesome flavor of the wings. They stand on their own.
I ordered up the combo to sample a couple of sides. I’m glad I did, because I can tell you to forget the sides and order more wings. The white roll was dry and near stale. The crinkle cut fries were limp and mushy. They do serve up a variety of pizzas, hot fish sandwiches, chicken sandwiches, burgers and salads. I’ll have to reserve judgment on the rest. The name seems to say it all though: Nuttin’ But Wings. I paid $10.50 for the 12 wing combo with tax tip and a drink.