Wing Review: The Neighborhood Draft
Updated: May 11, 2020
Name: Neighborhood Draft
Where: 5921 W Vilet St, Milwaukee, WI
MKE Wings Crew Present: Frank, Amber, Ross, Molly, Jeremy
Review Date: February 20, 2020
Wing Special? None
The Neighborhood Draft is a new on the scene having just opened their doors in November of 2019. However, it's wing lineage is impressive. The Neighborhood Draft is a new restaurant by Brian Felten, the owner of Tomkens which is maker of fantastic wings on its own. This new spot isn't simply TomKen's 2.0 however, the full menu has many thins you certainly wouldn't find at TomKens: Roasted Beets, Kobe Beef Sliders, Brie Bites... but don't worry, wings are still on the menu (although oddly called chicken ribs?). The question, will they be as good (or even better) than their TomKen's counter parts?
Wings are available in orders of 5 wings for $6.75. There is a boneless option for 3/4 lb for $7. Wings themselves were good size, not jumbo wings, but average to above average size. They are prepared grilled, or, at least they're finished off on the grill as evident by the grill marks searing the skin. Nice and crispy outside yet juicy inside, the wings were beautifully prepared. The wings themselves were lightly sauced but each flavor was served with an side of extra wing sauce for dipping in cause you really want to load up on the flavor. There was one exception to this, but more on that later.
Looking at their Facebook posts over the few months they've been open, Neighborhood draft appears to have a few staple sauces, but some rotating sauces as well. That said, I can only review the sauces present when we visited. As these sauces change, please note that any sauces described below may not be available should you give them a visit. Here are the sauces from our visit:
Dragon Buffalo - the hottest sauce on the menu! I only had one of these, but this was a pretty wild flavor. Good heat, but nothing too crazy (at least for the one wing). You definitely got the Buffalo taste but with an unexpected flavor of curry that was quite interesting. They said there was ghost peppers in the sauce, but don't let that scare you, while hot, it wasn't too crazy. Definitely a sauce worth trying if your looking for something spicy, yet very different.
Buffalo Garlic - holy garlic! I love garlic, and this one hit the spot, but don't plan on having any close conversations after eating this one, as it may do a number on your breath! Spicy, super garlicly, this sauce is on point and a must try for any garlic lover.
Greek Freak - I've never seen anything like this one: Buffalo Sauce, Greek Yogurt and Feta cheese. Spice from the buffalo sauce blended with the tangy creaminess from yogurt highlighted with bursts of flavor from the savory feta cheese. This was super unique, and one of favorite wing flavor discoveries in recent memory, seriously, try this one.
CB2s - Cholula, Bourbon and Brown Sugar. Another crazy flavor I've never seen anything remotely close to it anywhere else. The Cholula hits you right off the bat, that classic, tangy, Mexican-style hot sauce hits you with it's characteristic flavor, but then it gives way for the sweetness of the brown sugar and with a touch of bourbon. Pretty wild, very tasty.
Savannah Chew. This is a peach BBQ sauce with pecans. This flavor is also sometimes available at TomKens. I did not sample this one at Neighborhood draft, but did have it recently at a visit to TomKens. I wasn't the biggest fan of this one at TomKens, I think mostly because I'm not a big fan of pecans, but other members of the MilwaukeeWings crew seemed to enjoy this one, so I'd still recommend it if you like pecans.
Charo - this is Mexican dry rub. Hard to describe this one, salty, savory, but not a single stand out flavor, and not really much spice behind it either. But what's really cool about this flavor is its extra dipping sauce. As mentioned, all wings came with an extra side of their sauce, but Charo came with a pineapple salsa that worked really nicely with the dry rub. Again, super unique.
Fat Drunk Pig - Three words: Maple. Bourbon. Bacon. Sweet from the maple, smoky and savory from the bacon and some sharpness from the bourbon this is a great sauce for anyone looking for something a little sweeter. If you're a BBQ wing fan, you won't want to pass this one up.
Every one of these sauces were great! Bold flavors, super unique and creative, and the extra sauce on the side was a great touch, especially if you really want to load up the flavor. I really want to come back here to see what new flavors they come up with!
In addition to the side of extra wing sauce, the wings were served with either your choice of ranch and bleu cheese. However with this flavor line up and the extra wing sauce on the side, I didn't finding myself using the dressing as a side. I'm not even really sure ranch or bleu would are too well with any of these flavors outside of the Buffalo Garlic, but that's okay, they're were beyond delicious on their own. The wings were also served with shaved carrots. This is probably the only negative thing I have to put in this review, they were hard to eat and regular old carrot or celery sticks just work way better as a nice pallet cleanser.
Neighborhood draft knows their wings, bold and creative flavors pair with perfectly cooked wings for an amazing wing experience. This may not be the typical "wing bar," but, it's definitely worth a visit. I can easily award them the rank of a Milwaukee Wings Certified Wing Joint, but, they're well on their way to being a Hall of Fame contender. I plan to do a couple revisits here over the coming months to check out any new flavor offerings they have, if they're as good as this first visit, that Hall of Fame rank is certainly coming!
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