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Wings See World Cup Boom

Alex Van Buren
Food Features Editor
June 25, 2014

Photo credit: StockFood, Troesser, Carmen

This week in wings, CNN Money reports that national sports-’n-chicken chain Buffalo Wild Wings has seen a six percent surge in stock prices, to $166, since the start of this year’s World Cup

BWW is a sit-down chain (with one weird logo), but we suspected that the homebound World Cup fan craves wing home delivery just as much, so we called a handful of well-reviewed joints nationwide to find out how much sales have spiked. (Had wings had moved into Super Bowl–popular territory?)

Adam Lippen, founder of Atomic Wings (34 outposts on the east coast) said, “actually, it’s been amazing.” Last Sunday, when the United States played to a draw, he “tripled sales.” He estimated overall Cup profits up an impressive 25 percent from what they typically are this time of year, and has been selling a ton when “all the Latin American and South American games” have been on, pointing in particular to Team Brazil.  

In Chicago, Illinois, Jason Rhee of House of Wings experienced more modest success: “Mostly, we sell more during football games.” The Cup pales in comparison, he said, to the Super Bowl

But down New Orleans way, Allen Nguyen has been fielding orders at Bayou Hot Wings, and reports an increase of “maybe 15 to 20 percent.” (Kind of amazing that people still crave hot, sticky food during the hot, sticky NOLA weather.) Nguyen has been selling a ton of birds during the Honduras and Mexico games.

So there you go: Maybe it’s that these days the players are biting each other, but soccer fans seem to want something to chow down on, too—and wings are among the all-American eats fitting the bill.