Monday, September 13, 2010

Labor Day Road Trip, Part II

In case you missed it, here's Part I of my road trip recap. Now, on to Part II:

The Anchor Bar in Buffalo: Pretty damn good wings. And the best part is that they were slightly different from normal buffalo wings that you'd get at any random bar across America. I'm not exactly sure what it was -- but I do know that they were meaty and the medium wings had a nice, subtle spicy kick. Adam, who's one of those people who likes hot sauce on everything, asked for some of their hotter wing sauce on the side. They brought him a cup of their "suicidal" sauce. Eyes watering slightly, and trying to hold back a cough, he told me it was good. I even tried a drop -- you know, for the experience. It helped me remember why I don't like spicy things.

We went to the Anchor Bar mostly for the experience, expecting just to have any other wing, but came away pleasantly surprised. And of course, a picture of food:

Clutch Moment of Day 2, Winner: We'll go chronologically and give out the award here instead of at the end of the post. As we were leaving the Anchor Bar, the lady at the front asked us if we'd gone to the Buffalo Wing Festival yet. We both did a double-take. Wait, what? How did we not know about this?

After gathering the necessary info, we headed down to Coca-Cola Field, home of the Buffalo Bisons minor league baseball team for the National Buffalo Wing Festival. It was $5 each to get in (going to a Parkinson's charity, I think), and then we could buy food tickets. Typically, $2 got you 3 wings from any of the vendors -- and they had restaurants from all over selling their food there.

The Anchor Bar was represented there, but since we'd already had it, we decided to sample others' wings. We sampled wings from all over the country, but our favorite was one out of Charlotte, NC called the "Huli Huli" wing, which had an Asian sweet and spicy (but not too spicy) taste to it. Getting there in the early afternoon was also a huge plus, as we waited a maximum of maybe five minutes in any of the food lines. When we left at about 2PM, it was getting pretty crowded.

On a side note, there were a lot of fat, grouchy people there. Most of them were wearing Bills clothing. I'm not sure if the fat part was from the fact that we were at an unhealthy food festival or that Buffalo residents are right at the end of bulking up for the long winter ahead. You know, like bears do.

The grouchiness is more than understandable though. First and foremost, Trent Edwards. Second, Buffalo just seemed like a depressing city. Even though the weather on this trip hadn't been fantastic, it hadn't been bad yet -- until Buffalo. Uncomfortably cold and windy on Labor Day probably isn't a good sign for the months to come. And lastly, Trent Edwards.

The only downside was that we had to leave to get to Toronto, so we missed the National Buffalo Wing Eating Championship. Don't feel too bad for us, though -- Joey Chestnut didn't even win. Although I don't know if there's any shame in losing to Sonya "The Black Widow" Thomas. That woman can eat.

Sketchiest Moment of the Trip: Excluding Murph's general behavior (see Part I), of course. After a stop at Niagara falls, we made our way into Canada. Unfortunately, we were still a good hour and a half from Toronto at about 4:30, and we had a fantasy football draft for our school league at 5. So we did what any normal people would do -- we pulled into the parking lot of a Best Western outside Hamilton, Ontario and stole their wireless signal. About an hour later, and having somehow gotten both Frank Gore and DeAngelo Williams in a 12-team league, we were back on the road.

Clutch Moment of Day 2, Runner- Up: Wandering around Toronto looking for a place to eat dinner, we randomly stumbled upon a restaurant called C'est What, which only after going inside, did we realize had won several awards for having the best beer selection in all of Ontario. The food was really good also. I got a buffalo burger and poutine. Yes, I was still full from all the wings I'd eaten that afternoon, but I didn't care. You can't go to Canada and not have poutine.

The Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto: For all you other hockey fans out there (yes, both of you), you have to go see the Hockey Hall of Fame. There's a big exhibit of all the stars of the game, one for the game's history, and a big interactive section where you can have pucks shot at you while you try to stop them. As an added bonus, there's currently an exhibit showcasing all of the Olympic medals since 1896 on loan from the Olympic museum. Plus that whole "get your picture taken with the Stanley Cup" thing. That's pretty cool too.

The CN Tower in Toronto: The CN tower is that gigantic tower you always see in pictures of Toronto. It's also technically the tallest building in the world because of the antenna on top. The views from the top are pretty spectacular, but because you're basically paying money to ride a really long elevator, this is one of those touristy things that you pay $25 for to do once, and then cross off your list. Kind of like visiting a Thai brothel.

I'll have a write-up of The Blue Jays game at Rogers Centre in another post.

And of course, as soon as my meat sweats subside, I'll put something here up about my weekend as a barbeque judge. For those of you who need a definition of "meat sweats," here you go. I just think it's incredibly poor marketing to have a shirt like that that only goes up to 2XL.

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