Buffalo Wild Wings
23600 Rockfield Blvd.
Lake Forest, CA 92630
Fall brings autumn colors, declining temperatures and NFL football. Okay, southern California does not get any of these things, but the rest of the nation does. I still love football, even though we do not have a team. In fact my team, the Jaguars, are so seldom on free TV, that I have no choice, but to go out and watch them somewhere that they have all the games. And thus, that is the dilemma we face every Sunday, where to watch the game?
We look for a place that has good food, service, and a pleasant atmosphere. This may seem like an easy task, but it is hard finding a place that has this hat trick of characteristics. So I have set it as my goal, to find the best place to watch football in Orange county, (at least until my team is eliminated from playoff contention, which could be by the beginning of November, because they are not too good). Our first stop is Buffalo Wild Wings.
I had never been to a Buffalo Wild Wings before. They seem to have sprung up all over the place in the last few months. I know of at least three in Orange county, (this one in Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, and Irvine). According to the Orange County Register they are looking to expand to at least 20 units in the near future. Let's see if this is going to be our new hangout for football.
BWW is a sports fan paradise, TV's all over the place, a full bar and for those that do not like football, they even have trivia boxes that you can lose yourself in, if you are not into the football. The service on this night is really good, so they are two-thirds of the way to becoming our football hangout. Now let's see about the all important food category.
Our first appetizer that we tried was the Crispy Southwest Dippers. In the menu these are descirbed as tortilla dippers, filled with fajita-spiced chicken, pepper jack cheese, tomatoes, onions, jalapenos, corn and black beans. All served with a southwest ranch dipping sauce. This sounds like it would be big on flavor, right? No they were not. These were bland, and over fried., and that made the insides of this taste like nothing. If the menu had not told me what was in this, I would have had no idea what was in here.
The second of our starters was the Mini Corn Dogs, served with honey mustard sauce. These were fair, but nothing that you could not get at your local Weinerschnitzel, for about half the price, (these were $5.99).
Katie and I each ordered five of the Boneless Wings, because it was Boneless Thursday at BWW. The price for each boneless wing was 65 cents, as compared to the usual 90 cents they are the rest of the week. The hard part was to choose two of the fourteen sauces that they have. I went with the Asian Zing sauce, and Katie, surprisingly, went for the Hot sauce. She was sweating after a few bites of the hot sauce, but she said she could not stop eating these. I liked the heat on these, but found that the chicken was just average. The Asian Zing sauce was good too. Sweet and with a hint of spice. I would have liked a little more heat in this sauce, and then it would have been excellent. As a whole I liked these, but I would like to try the traditional wings next time.
As bland as Katie's Steak and Potato Flip looks, it tasted equally as plain the next day when I had the other half for lunch. The Potato Flip is flatbread pizza crust filled with steak, mozzarella, french fries, southwestern ranch dressing and honey BBQ sauce. There were only a few pieces of steak on here, and the cheese was almost non-existent. Katie, who is usually pleased by everything, was very under-whelmed by this also.
The Black and Blue Burger is pictured above. This burger was flavored with Cajun spices, and topped with blue cheese dressing. At least that is what the menu said. If I was blind folded and asked what kind of burger this was, I would have replied that it was a regular burger with no spices or blue cheese in the vicinity of this plate. I even asked for extra blue cheese dressing, and this still did not help this burger out. It was cooked okay, but I could not get over the lack of flavor.
So after reading the above, you know that this is not going to be my ultimate place to watch football. I liked the atmosphere and the service was good, but the food was the killing point here. I would go back to watch a game or two, but I would only eat the wings here. Our first drive in our goal to find a great place to watch football resulted in a field goal. We stalled in the red zone and had to take the three points. If that is too much football talk for you, the translation is that they started off good, but failed to deliver when it came to the food.
Out of five Bills, (for you non-football fans, that is the name of the Buffalo football team), five being best to zero being worst, Buffalo Wild Wings gets 2 Bills.
For more information on Buffalo Wild Wings, click here: http://www.buffalowildwings.com/