In what could possibly be a game changer in the fried chicken landscape, Wingstop is testing the addition of bone-in chicken thighs to its menu. This would add to the restaurant chain’s already robust chicken roster, which currently includes wings, boneless wings (yes, yes, I know), and tenders. Bone-in chicken thighs! Finally, someone understands the supremacy of the thigh!
Trade publication Restaurant Business reports that seven lucky cities are in the testing phase. Wingstop is trying to leverage better prices for its sourcing of chicken by using more than just the wings, whose market prices are notoriously volatile. Just like all the other offerings, the thighs (which, again, are the best part of the chicken) will be crispy and you’ll be able to toss them in all the sauces and rubs that come on the standard menu. Atomic bone-in thighs, here we come!
If you’ve opened your delivery apps recently, you may have noticed a massive influx of new virtual chicken wing restaurants. Wings, like pizza, travel pretty well, and are still very popular. Everyone wants in on the game. Domino’s has released a new and improved version, Applebee’s has launched a brand generically called “Neighborhood Wings,” restaurant chain Smokey Bones has debuted “The Wing Experience,” and Chili’s has unleashed “It’s Just Wings.” Confusing, I know. That’s when you should just turn off the app and call your local mom and pop shop. (And no, Pasqually’s Pizza & Wings is not a local mom and pop shop. Don’t be fooled!)
Wingstop is currently experiencing massive success, as in last quarter’s growth was big. Same-store sales went up 25.4% and overall systemwide sales went up by 32.8%. That’s $509.2 million of bone-in and boneless chicken money. There’s a lot of meat on them bones. Though it’s far from the only wing joint in town.