The four best places for buffalo wings in Chicago

Like them doused in hot sauce or mildly seasoned (wuss)? Here are our favorite spots for buffalo wings in Chicago.
Photograph: Nicole Radja Jake Melnick's Corner Tap serves some of the best wings in Chicago.
By Esther Castillejo |

The buffalo wing turned 50 in 2014, and we still love it as much as ever. When cravings for the hot and spicy chicken dish hit, these are the four places we visit to snack on wings while sipping a craft beer.

Where to find buffalo wings

Bars, Sports Bars

Jake Melnick's Corner Tap

icon-location-pin River North
This laid-back River North pub boasts 150 beers, kegged cocktails, wine on tap, two big patios and “Seriously. Ridiculously. Over-the-Top Hot Wings,” available medium, spicy, super-hot, XXX (made with ghost peppers, the hottest raw chili in the world), or “Poncho’s” style, marinated in garlic and cayenne.
Restaurants, American


icon-location-pin Lincoln Square

Chef James Gottwald and his wife, Jennifer Monti, are sharing the brotherly love with Chicagoans: Their restaurant features Philly cheese steaks on Amoroso rolls shipped straight from Philadelphia. The vibe is more sports bar than restaurant, and Gottwald makes ridiculously meaty, spicy buffalo wings to prove it. Make sure you have water ready if you order the nuclear wings tossed in the restaurant’s “Rocky Peppers” relish, made with jalapeño, charred serrano and scotch bonnets.

Bars, Pubs

Toon's Bar & Grill

icon-location-pin Wrigleyville

This sleeper hit on the edge of Wrigleyville draws neighbors for billiards and shuffleboard, televised sports with a cheering crowd, pulled-pork sandwiches and juicy wings tossed in barbecue, buffalo, spicy Korean and Jamaican jerk relishes. A good beer selection on tap and a dose of Kansas City-style hospitality make it even more natural to stop in.

Restaurants, American

Buffalo Joe's

icon-location-pin Rogers Park

Who would have guessed that pure nirvana comes in three varieties: mild, hot and suicide? Hardcore types go for either the hot sauce or the vinegary jalapeño suicide version, which packs a hint of sweetness with its heat. Newbies may scoff at the ranch dressing served for dipping instead of blue cheese, but we think it cools the palate just enough to ready us for the next round.