A wingman’s resolution
blog by S.J. Velasquez • August 05, 2011 @ 7:50am
Most of us slackers resolved to make healthy lifestyle changes—maybe lose some weight—when we rang in the new year (and shortly after decided next year—that’s the year to turn your life around!). One Ohio-born New York City resident went against the grain, resolving to eat 2011 wings by the end of the year, and he’s heading here, the wing mecca, to down a few of the spicy fried poultry parts.
Ryan Hohman, 27, has really made a name for himself in the wing realm. Since starting his Jan. 1 mission, he’s been featured in Time Magazine, Metromix and a list of other publications. Even with all of this wing notoriety, Hohman has never set foot in Buffalo, the holiest territory for wing fanatics—but that’s about to change. Hohman is heading to Buffalo the first weekend in September for the annual Buffalo Chicken Wing Festival.
He’s not intimidated by the local wing scene; in fact, he says he’s really excited. “I’m really looking forward to meeting the Wing King,” Hohman said of festival organizer Drew Cerza.
And Hohman has a crew of Buffalo buddies feeding him advice and nuggets—no, drumsticks—of Wing City wisdom. The festival’s weeks away, but Hohman is adding to an already beefy to-do list that includes trips to Anchor Bar, Duff’s, Mighty Taco and Wegmans for some loganberry.
You may be wondering what this outsider is doing, hauling his wing-eating duff upstate, consuming our native cuisine and our glory. I mean, what does a downstate dude know about authentic wings? Well, turns out Hohman knows his stuff, and he’s a bit of a Buffalo wing purist. You won’t find him slathering his wings in ranch dressing—that’s for poseurs.
He’s so fond of blue cheese dressing that he was audibly enthusiastic about experiencing the bobbing-for-wings (in a baby pool filled with blue cheese dip) at the festival. Those “franchises that charge 50 cents extra for blue cheese”—he thinks they’re bunk. And Hohman will judge a restaurant for not throwing some celery and carrot sticks in with a wing order.
While his favorite wing is the traditional Buffalo-style wing, he does enjoy switching up sauces to experience new flavors. Hey, ease up on the guy—he’s already eaten 1,164 wings this year. Coincidentally, he’s lost 16 pounds since starting the 2011 challenge.
Yeah, I know. Here I am, slamming rabbit food to shed a few L-Bs. We totally went about making new year’s resolutions the wrong way, huh?
We’ll be meeting up with Hohman, the self-proclaimed Ultimate Wingman himself, at the festival for a potential video spot on the site—so stay glued to Buffalo.com. Until then, also follow his wing-feasting ways on Twitter and Facebook.
Here’s a an inside look at Hohman’s daily pre-festival training schedule, which he has generously shared with us:
1. 12oz curls
2. Buy stock in Prilosec
3. Practice my #WINGING face
4. Watch Lord of the Wings
5. More 12oz curls