Applebee's

Saint Clairsville
50655 Valley Frontage Rd
(740) 695-8440

Applebee’s is a default kind of place.  You know what you like, and you know exactly what to expect.   You’ve probably got a few favorites on the menu that you get each time, rarely straying off the path.  That’s the good thing…and the bad thing…about Applebee’s.  And what may be worse…you don’t really expect much from Applebee’s.  Well…if you’re thinking about mixing up the same old routine with an appetizer or two…or if you’re just stopping in for some beers and a bite…I think you’ll be surprised by the wings. 

Like so many other national chain, casual dining restaurants, the wings are just hanging out in the appetizer section of the menu with their proverbial pals: the spinach-artichoke dip, mozzarella sticks and of course the unexplainably popular boneless “wings”.  So when you order, make sure you specify that you want bone-in AKA “classic” wings.

Not a bad selection. Classic wings only!
You’ll see a pretty limited selection of sauces apparently ranked by degrees of spiciness as indicated by a colored dot alongside the sauce name.  Only 5 sauces to choose from…but when you really start to pay attention to other chains like Applebee’s …you’ll see that 5 sauces is better than the 2 or 3 that other similar places might offer.

For even the smallest of spicy cravings to be satisfied, you need to go with the Hot Buffalo.  I’m pretty certain that the Classic Buffalo would be equivalent to a “mild” sauce on any other menu.   And yet…I think it’s likely that the Hot Buffalo is just the Classic Buffalo with some dry spices sprinkled over the wings after they’ve been tossed in sauce and put on the platter.  Maybe you can see the dry spices in the photos.  Either way the Hot Buffalo has a really good flavor and will leave a little tingle on your lips when you’re done.

Ten medium-sized wings for $8.49
These are definitely traditional wings…deep fried and tossed in sauce.  The wings came out crispy.  Exactly how we like ‘em.  There was something weird going on with the drums.  While the flappers were all crispy outside and still moist and juicy inside…the drums were crispy but too dry on the inside.  Not enough to make them uneatable or even unappetizing... just noticeably dry.

For the most part, both the drums and the flappers are medium sized wings.  I did have one anomalous large drum on my plate.  Nothing, though, that could be considered jumbo. 

On to value.  The value here isn’t so great.  At $8.49 for an order of ten…that’s 85 cents for each one.  While the flavor is really good, and the crispiness is right on, the size of these wings is main drawback.  Based on size, the value factor takes a big tumble.  On the positive side the celery is built in to the price and so is your choice of ranch or bleu cheese for dipping.  Lots of places up charge 50 cents or so for those “extras” but that’s not the case at Applebee’s.  Doesn’t mean much to me though, as I don’t eat the celery and I never get use the dips.  I’d rather taste delicious, spicy, saucy wings…not celery.

Bottom Line:  The wings at Applebee’s are always surprisingly good.  While there’s not a lot of unique character in the recipe, at least they’re fried crispy and coated well in a traditional buffalo sauce that brings enough spice to satisfy the craving.  So, if you find yourself at your Applebee’s and you’re in the mood for some wings…go ahead and put your order in.  I don’t think you’ll be disappointed…in fact, you’re probably going to be surprisingly satisfied. 
Applebee's on Urbanspoon

10 comments:

  1. Anonymous4:34 AM

    As a server at Applebee's, and a huge fan of wings, I can tell you two things: #1. You are correct. Our "hottest" wings are pretty much just our classic (AKA mild) buffalo wings sprinkled with a spicy dry seasoning. Here's some hints..... First, request "extra hot". Your wings will get an extra dousing of that dry seasoning. Second, ask for a side of the dry seasoning. That way you can add more heat to your liking. (At the location I work at, there is no charge for the "side of extra dry seasoning" and, in my experience, this is a universal rule at all Applebee's) #2. The majority of our locations offer half price appetizers after 9PM....making our wings a better value with your beer :)

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    1. Anonymous4:41 AM

      I forgot to mention, in an attempt to control costs (because most people, like me, don't even touch the celery) many locations now only serve celery upon request. Your server SHOULD ask if you want celery, but if he or she doesn't , just ask. You still will not be charged, but the automatic addition of celery is going by the wayside because the majority of the time, it just gets tossed.

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    2. Thanks for the insider info!

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    3. Anonymous5:44 PM

      what is the name of the spicy dry seasioning

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  2. Anonymous5:19 AM

    I wish they would add Asian spice to their collection of spices.. Its my favorite. And they would be perfect to go out nd eat if they had it

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    1. They DO offer a sweet n spicy wing sauce, which DOES have some Asian flair to it. It is, by far, my fave.

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  3. Finally, got what I was looking for!! I definitely enjoy every word you ponder in this post. Glad I stumbled into this article! Smile I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post

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  4. Anonymous8:36 PM

    Just had wings this week at Applebees. I liked their wings before but now I think they changed the recipe to include bits of peppers in the sauce without so much butter or oil. They were amazing! Maybe the best I have had. Check them out if you get a chance.

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  5. Anonymous9:53 PM

    I had these twice in Port Orange Florida Applebees and now have a new favorite. Have to try the one around the corner here in Michigan to see if they are the same. The hot buffalo reminded my of spicy garlic at BWs

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  6. Anonymous5:55 PM

    what is the name of the spicy dry seasoning that applebees puts in and on top of their wing sauce? topical seasoning

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