GrubGrade Reader First Impressions: Wendy’s Bold Buffalo Boneless Chicken Wings

A couple weeks back we posted news of Wendy’s Boneless Wings.  This weekend I received an email from someone who recently sampled the “Bold Buffalo” flavor.

Wendy's Boneless Wings

I haven’t yet tried these myself, but a GrubGrade reader did.  He wasn’t a fan, check it out:

Friday, June 19, 2009, I ate a quick lunch at a Wendy’s in Kirkland, Washington.  I tried an item that appeared to be new because it was being heavily promoted.  I had always liked Wendy’s and thought them to be a cut above most other fast food places.  They have slipped quite a bit.  I don’t often make much of what I eat in any fast food place, but this was something else.  This terrible meal is right up there in my all-time five worst ever, just only slightly better than the cooked-to-death, hyper-salty Chinese food served to me by illiterate, barefoot Indian women in the Peruvian Amazon city of Iquitos.

The “Bold Buffalo Boneless Chicken Wings” are the worst-tasting thing I have ever eaten at any fast food restaurant in my lifetime. The overbearing, vinegary pepper sauce was otherwise thin and too sugary. It destroyed the taste of the chicken in a way that the capsicum alone could never do. It nearly made me ill. The sauce was so utterly horrid that for hours I wondered, seriously, if it contained nothing other than vinegar, extract of Charleston hot pepper and corn syrup. It was Tabasco Sauce and Karo Syrup, but with more vinegar. Yeccchhh!

I ate the entire serving very quickly because I was extremely hungry when I went to Wendy’s, as I often am when I eat fast food.  I wolfed it.  Still, I almost didn’t eat the last two pieces because the cloying, acidic back taste was beginning to overcome my mouth.  I did finish them, but quickly regretted doing so for the next four hours or so.  I almost vomited about half hour later.

I love spicy food and eat it every day.  But, this ghastly item I will never eat again.  I will never eat any chicken item at Wendy’s that comes with a sauce already applied.  I will never eat at Wendy’s again unless this item is removed from their menu and they publicly apologize for having served such an abomination to the unwitting public.  If they persist in serving such horrendous fare, I will forever denigrate and besmirch their food as unfit for human consumption.

This one item could ruin their business. They should kill it now.

Oh my, not a great experience.  I wonder how the Honey BBQ and Sweet and Spicy Asian Chicken flavors stack up.  If I take the plunge, I’ll let you know.  As for the “Bold Buffalo”; You’ve been warned!

33 comments on “GrubGrade Reader First Impressions: Wendy’s Bold Buffalo Boneless Chicken Wings

  1. “The “Bold Buffalo Boneless Chicken Wings” are the worst-tasting thing I have ever eaten at any fast food restaurant in my lifetime.” – Dang!!!

    …well I know what not to order now.

  2. Adam Bomb says:

    Wow, that’s a pretty negative review! That sauce must be awful. I tried the Asian boneless wings a couple months ago, and thought they were okay. Nothing amazing, but they weren’t terrible by any means. I think I’ll steer clear of the buffalo variety though!

  3. RTT says:

    So, I wonder If he liked it?

  4. Justin says:

    Yup, I totally agree mate, this was terrible stuff. It’ll be gone before KFC gets rid of their Grilled Chicken.

  5. Nick T says:

    To be honest, this just sounds like someone who is ill-disposed to buffalo flavoring in general. Most renowned buffalo wing sauces have quite a bit of vinegar, including Anchor Bar and the top-rated place in my area. (Archie Moore’s) The reason I am skeptical of this review is that I tried one of those Wendy’s chicken sandwiches slathered in buffalo sauce a few months back and thoroughly enjoyed it. I am assuming this sauce is really no different, so let’s get a second opinion.

  6. Adam Bomb says:

    A second opinion would definitely be a good idea. Upon further thought, it does seem odd that Wendy’s would put out a buffalo sauce that was *that* disgusting. I’m wondering if the chicken this guy got had been sauced ahead of time and was just sitting around under a heat lamp for a while or something. That would affect the quality for sure. I would hope Wendy’s would sauce the chicken as it was ordered…

  7. Shannon says:

    I’ve had these and I kind of have to agree. I split a serving with my boyfriend and the sauce nearly killed me. And I LOVE spice! It was very overpowering, there was no balance. It also made the chicken very soggy. It might have worked better as a dip.

  8. Tommy says:

    I also have to agree. I had these tonight, what a major disappointment. Although I did not find the buffalo sauce overly spicy at all, just plain tasteless. Besides at $3.99 for 7 pieces you would do much better sticking with the $.99 nuggets . . .

  9. Thanks for verifying that I wasn’t hallucinating! I’m the guy who defamed the fake Buffalo wings at Wendy’s. It’s good to know that all those who actually tried them agree, at least, that they are not good. My standards for spicy food are skewed toward authentic Mexican and Southwestern food because I was born in New Mexico and have lived nearly my entire life on the West Coast. As a result, when some yokel from the Midwest slathers hot pepper on an otherwise wholesome, standard food item and calls it “exotic”, I rebel. There’s nothing wrong with breaded, deep-fried chicken nuggets or strips and putting a flavoring sauce on them. They can be a tasty snack. However, that can’t be an excuse to offend the palate of reasonable people who just want something to eat. My intention was only to show that fast food doesn’t have to suck and we don’t have to put up with it when it does. Also, thanks to Nick T for alerting me of the general vinegary nature of Buffalo sauce. He’s right; I haven’t eaten it a lot. Maybe I wouldn’t like what they generally serve in Buffalo or elsewhere away from the coasts. There are places here that specialize in Buffalo wings, so I’ll have to try them a few times more before I opine on Buffalo sauce in general. Thanks again to Ryan and the people who contribute to this site. It provides a valuable service to consumers.

  10. Kelly says:

    What! I think these things are great! I live in Buffalo, so I’ve tried a good amount of Buffalo wings. The originals. And for me, these are just awesome.

  11. I had these today, actually. They weren’t bad but I don’t know if I’d ever eat them again.

  12. Sampson says:

    I completely agree with this review. I ordered the buffalo chicken a few days ago. It didn’t help that they didn’t close the lid on the package and when I went to take it out of the bag I spilled half of it in the bag so it kinda ruined my first experience.The Chicken was rubbery, and I tasted nothing but sauce. It was like they took their chicken nuggets and took a ladel of their buffalo sauce and just poured it on. There was so much sauce left I could have put it in a shot glass. If you want boneless chicken I like Pizza Hut wing street. So many flavors, all of them good. You taste the chicken and they are 7 bucks for about 12 piece. Totally worth it. This stuff from Wendys I was not impressed with.

  13. Ashley says:

    I have to disagree, and I’m probably the only one that is disagreeing. I tried the bold buffalo today at one Wendy’s and I absolutely loved it, it was very spicy but it was still really good and the chicken was so tender. I had to dip them in ranch because it was a little too spicy but it was even better in ranch. I tried the honey bbq a couple minutes ago and I’m not a huge fan of those, I think the sauce is gross. The bold buffalo is definitely awesome, I’m also a huge wing fan and I’m a big fan of spicy foods though. The person before me said it was like their chicken nuggets, mine was definitely not their chicken nuggets with sauce on them. Maybe it all just depends on the Wendy’s that you go to. The bold buffalo and the honey bbq that I had were from two different Wendy’s. I personally loved it.

  14. Wes says:

    It’s mildly spicy and tangy, and you can definitely still taste the fried chicken underneath the sauce even if it’s layered on. I don’t see what the issue is; if I were more concerned about the flavor than the spicy sensation, I wouldn’t eat spicy food in the first place.

  15. Jason says:

    I haven’t tried the Buffalo ones yet, but I thought the Asian Sweet and Spicy were pretty good. Not very spicy, but a nice flavor. I have had them twice in the past two weeks.

  16. james42519 says:

    i tried the BBQ ones and ended up getting a chicken sandwich from burger king for $1 too because it was smaller then it looked in the picture. i could have got the sandwich from wendy’s but i didn’t want to look like bad i guess.

    second time got the bold buffalo for a side for a pizza. these are cheaper then the ones they sell at the pizza places are least for around the same amount.

  17. james42519 says:

    oh the bold buffalo is not really bad i think. taste just like buffalo chicken wings they have at any other place that sells them to me. add some ranch dressing/dip and it’s perfect.

  18. james42519 says:

    the bold buffalo wasn’t bad i think. got them for a side with pizza. used the ranch sauce stuff and it was just like any buffalo wings from anyplace else and cheaper. try these wings flavors before you judge.

  19. james42519 says:

    sorry about that. i refreshed and it didn’t show so i thought it didn’t work. can’t delete now.

  20. Adam Bomb says:

    Finally tasted these yesterday, and I do have to agree with the review. They were pretty nasty.

  21. cress says:

    I thought the Asian Sweet N Spicy was great. The sauce tasted very good, sweet with just enough kick. Although I didn’t think it was enough chicken, as I was still wanting more when I was done. The other two varieties don’t look that enticing to me. I have had buffalo and honey BBQ chicken wings/nuggets at a hundred other fast food places. I would recommend the Asian chicken though. Although I don’t see this lasting too long at Wendys.

  22. cress says:

    From the Wall Street Journal:
    “But what really has UBS analysts excited is not a burger at all. Rather it’s Wendy’s recent introduction of the somewhat terrifying sounding “boneless chicken wings.” The product “has helped boost Wendy’s same store sales to the 3%+ range—among the best in the fast food industry—allowing Wendy’s to gain momentum against Burger King.” No bones about it, that likely sounds delicious to Wendy’s-Arby’s shareholders.”

  23. Justin says:

    I must disagree with the review, and wonder if maybe he just had a bad batch. I live in Canada and we have a Wendys in our building, it is a really good location and they make everything fresh ( they are also only open for like 5-6 hours a day). I love the buffalo sauce I think it is similar to the sauce that DQ used to use on their buffalo chicken fingers (God I miss those).

    My only complaint is that the sauce should be thicker so that it clings to the chicken a little better. Other than that 2 thumbs way up!

  24. Nick B says:

    On August 11th I visited the Wendy’s in Big Flats, New York. I ordered the boneless chicken wings with the asian sauce. When I recieved my meal I was appauled at the contents of the chicken basket. In it was 6 soggy, soaking wet, cold chicken wings wich I payed 8 US dollars for. I understand that the price of these are listed 5.69. I was charged 7.69. I confronted an employee who I assumed was the manager and asked politely for a new chicken basket. She rudely denied my request and turned her back to me. I asked her again with her back turned if all the baskets were this small. She replied “we weigh each basket the same” and I asked her to weigh it. She then stated that they actually do not weigh them, but count the nuggets out until the bottom of the basket is covered. Mine was half covered, but did contain the minimum of 6 pieces. She said it would take only one more piece to cover the bottom and asked if I wanted “just one more piece”. I graciously took the piece and sat down, after she spilled the sauce all over me, in attempt to enjoy my meal. The chicken was near inedible, but I ate it as It was my only lunch break. I am writing to complain about my overall service, and meal. The extreme negative and rude attitude from this employee was discusting and outrageous.

  25. Janine says:

    I have to agree with this review. I was excited to try these seeing how the commercial made them look tasty. I could tell just when I opened the box that these were nasty. Let me just say I am a “chicken wing connoisseur”. I love them and eat them often. (I live right outside buffalo) this sauce tastes NOTHING like the buffalo sauce you get on a chicken wing. It was thick and gooey and just gross. The chicken was nasty too. It was the worst meal I had ever had from Wendy’s. What a letdown because I love their spicy chicken sandwich.

  26. steve says:

    I just tried the buffalo wings. They were really awful. Tasted like sweet-n-sour with a splash of something spicy. And this is what passes for chicken now? Four bucks buys a whole chicken around here. The part about being drunk didn’t even help me. Dave Thomas must be rolling in his grave. Sell your stock, Wendy’s is in a nose dive.

  27. Kyle says:

    Ya I tried the Honey BBQ variety and oh wow were they horrid! I was upset that I paid nearly $7 for a small combo, when for the same price I could have gone anywhere else for a better deal. Even the dollar menu at McDonalds. The BBQ ones taste like a generic piece of chicken, fried, and then thrown into BBQ sauce that reminded me of what we were served in school. And the word “premium,” ya right!

  28. Thom Tinker says:

    OK I love the bold buffalo sauce. I like to get the chili with my combo and the left over sauce added to the chili really wakes it up. I love spicy food and these “wings” are to me a great quick lunch.

  29. Duane T. says:

    I have tryed these myself there not that bad! It just matters on the wendys you go to or maybe they served you one prepared wrong. I would say to retry them. Try traveling to Port Charlotte FL.
    Ours is great!

  30. Lilly says:

    I love the buffalo chicken. Maybe its just me and my love of chicken and buffalo sauce though. Those of you who don’t like it probably don’t like buffalo wild wings either do you? One bad point is i’ve noticed that in different wendys i’ll order the buffalo chicken, but the sauce is different in every wendys. Like they used a different spice or something. Ive been told at a wendys that they got rid of the buffalo chicken! This has destroyed my happy place. ):

  31. Danny says:

    I hate that Wendy’s got rid of these things they were delicious. I eat Buffalo sauce on everything just about and this was just another great thing to add to the menu. The sauce was weird at first but, I have to say it had me coming back for more. Everytime I went to Wendy’s I would order this. The Chipotle wings that replaced the buffalo, now thats something to complain about. They are hideously disgusting.

  32. Mega says:

    Bring back the buffalo wings, them chipotle wings suck!

  33. Lesta says:

    I was horrified when I ordered the spicy buffalo only to bite into a boneless wing that was sweet and peppery (i.e. chiotle). I took it back to the store only for the manager to tell me that the chipotle wings were being served in place of buffalo. Why they failed to tell me this fact when I ordered is beyond me. With that being said, I am devastated that they took spicy buffalo off of the menu. Perhaps it was due to some of the reviews here but I couldn’t disagree more. I thought they were delicious. I loved the heat, the vinegar, and never got a sweet taste in the least. I have to agree with Mega, bring em’ back!

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