photo credit: Larry Miller/Flickr
Pluckers Wing Bar
Imagine a Buffalo Wild Wings that doesn’t suck. That’s Pluckers. Started by a couple of UT students who were rightfully frustrated with the lack of wing joints in Austin, Plucker’s is now one of the many local business success stories franchising beyond state lines. During the super bowl, any given location will push out so many thousands of wings in a single day that one can’t help but fear for the well-being of the chicken population.
The menu is dense - Plucker’s attempts a wide variety of items (burgers, sandwiches, salads, wraps) - but do not be fooled, always go with the wings. If you’re with a group, the optimal ordering method is to begin with an appetizer to share, then order a variety of wing flavors - make sure you get in on both the dry rub and wet sauces.
The walls are covered in flat screen TV’s airing all live sporting events happening on the planet - at any given moment there is probably at least one cricket game on display somewhere in the room. If you attempt to visit during any Texas Longhorn athletic event, you will probably be met with a substantial wait, but you can kill time at their well-stocked bar, which offers plenty of happy hour options.
This isn’t Hooters by any means, but it’s certainly a far cry from anything classy and is often filled with bros of all kinds. But if you can look beyond the fact that everything on the menu is upping your risk for colorectal cancer and/or diabetes, you’ll have one of the better sports bar experiences of your lifetime.
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If you appreciate spicy, this is the standard, foundational buffalo wing for your order.
Fire in the Hole
I’ve witnessed friends eat 25 of these (do so, and you get your picture on the wall, a crappy t-shirt, and a hole in your esophagus) and nearly die. Avoid these unless you’re pledging a fraternity or are a sick masochist with a death wish.
Spicy Garlic Parmesan
These wizards have somehow married the saltiness of parmesan with a spicy dry rub and succeeded in creating an insanely good sauce.
Everything is right about a mountain of waffle fries, cheese, sour cream, bacon, and jalapeños. Be careful not to go too hard on them, as they will fill you up fast and leave little room for wings.
They correctly fry the entire pickle spear instead of the inferior “chip” method that other, lesser joints implement. They also come with a side of ranch.
If you have room, these are worth trying at least once in your life. They are doused in chocolate sauce, ice cream, and powdered sugar.