Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Bowie Restaurant Project: (15) Wing Zone

For an explanation of the Bowie Restaurant Project, look here.

For a collection of all the Bowie Restaurant Project entries, look here.

Wing Zone, 15477 Excelsior Dr

Most Recent Foursquare Check-in: 8/29/2011
Total Foursquare Check-ins: 1
Pre-Foursquare Visits: No
Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5 stars

I don't think Wing Zone -- with about 100 locations -- is ubiquitous enough for me to say, "It's a Wing Zone," and have that mean much to many people.

Wing Zone -- or "The Wing Zone"? -- is a chain of wing restaurants that primarily serve the takeout and delivery markets. There are four tables at this Wing Zone, so it technically meets my "restaurant" criteria, but barely. When I went there, the guy bagged my food for takeout without even asking me if I wanted to eat there. That experience also revealed the disappointing lack of celery as a standard option. You get a pack of blue cheese or ranch sauce, but you have to pay extra for celery.
2 of the 4 tables
Ordinarily, I'd want to make more than one visit to judge a place that isn't just another location of a chain I'd been to before. But, since they deliver, and we're still unpacking our kitchen items, it seemed that delivery could give another way of rating Wing Zone.

The delivery itself was fine; I was able to schedule it online. I got wings, which were once again pretty good -- comparable to something like Buffalo Wild Wings. Christina got a burger, which was flavorless and overcooked. We also ordered some brownie bites, which turned out to be fried, like almost everything else they serve (pickles, mushrooms, etc.) The one non-fried-item we could find was a grilled chicken sandwich, which we ordered for the boys. (We cut up the chicken and threw away the bun.) It was actually pretty good, but in the future I think we'll just cook up chicken here and save some money.

Wing Zone offers some variety to the Bowie dining scene, but not exceptional food and the dine-in option is kind of sad. As a chain, it would top out at 4 stars (barring exceptional circumstances), but it doesn't really come close to it. Still, it's not fast food, and it's worthwhile to have. If you want wings, they're probably the first call you want to make in Bowie. 2 1/2 stars.

In other Bowie restaurant news, the Uptown Cafe has opened at 16701 Melford Blvd., in the Maryland Science and Technology Center. It's basically a breakfast/lunch deli for workers in the office park. Although it doesn't rate too highly on the excitement meter, it has the potential to fill a pressing need -- a place to grab lunch quick without having to go out onto the highway. Hopefully it will suffer a better fate than Pep Stars Cafe, the previous tenant, which moved out to Fairwood (a development just west of city limits).

As with "Bang Bang Mongolian Grill", I'm going to delay review until it appears in the new restaurant guide (or I run out of restaurants in the current guide).

Also on my radar is Ravza, a Mediterranean restaurant near Wal-Mart. I don't know why it didn't make the city's restaurant guide, but it does appear to be both a restaurant and in Bowie. Again, I'll wait and see if it appears in the new guide.
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