Chicken wings are the ultimate comfort food dish and make for the perfect appetizer for any Father’s Day gathering. Chef Christina Machamer’s elevated version packs some heat but is balanced nicely by the lemon and orange undertones in the sauce. The bright citrus flavors in the recipe enhances the beautiful citrus notes in our Lewis Vineyard Chardonnay, which bursts with flavors of tangerine, lemon confit, and citrus blossom. The Chardonnay’s natural acidic structure also cuts through the fat in the chicken wings and cleanses the palette for the next bite.
1 & 1⁄2 teaspoons
Yellow onion, sliced
Thyme (lemon thyme if available)
Seasoned flour (recipe to the right)
Fresh squeezed orange juice
Melted unsalted butter
Frank’s hot sauce
Chinese five spice
Lemon and/or orange zest
Fresh ground pepper
Ingredients: Seasoned Flour
Fresh ground black pepper
Combine salt, sugar, onion, thyme, bay leaf, and garlic in a large mixing bowl. Add chicken and toss to evenly coat. Cover with plastic wrap and allow chicken to marinate in refrigerator overnight.
On the second day, remove wings and discard marinade. Place wings on a wire rack over a sheet tray and allow to air dry in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
Add oil to a heavy bottomed cast iron pan or heat a deep fryer to 350°F. Evenly coat wings in seasoned flour and allow to rest about 15 minutes, allowing a coating to form.
In a separate pan, reduce orange juice to 1⁄2 cup. Add butter, hot sauce, spices, zest, and bay leaf, and return to a simmer. If desired, drizzle in a cornstarch slurry to bring sauce to desired thickness and make it more stable. (Cornstarch slurry is made with 1T cornstarch: 1T cold water) whisk together and add only as much as is needed. Sauce will thicken when it resumes to simmer.
Fry wings until golden brown and an internal temperature of 165°F is reached. If wings start to get too brown before they come to an internal temperature of 165°F, they may finish cooking in a 400°F oven.
Toss wings with sauce and garnish with cilantro and sesame seeds.
Marisa McCann is the lead writer and editor for the Frank Family blog and magazine. As the winery’s Marketing Manager, she holds an MBA in Wine Marketing and Management from the Bordeaux International Wine Institute as well as a WSET III certification. Marisa is also an avid photographer, passionate traveler, and published writer.