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Simeri’s chicken wings will change your mind about unbroken wings

This summer, during my vacation, I was sitting under an umbrella on a South Carolina beach and decided to hook up my headphones to my smartphone and watch a movie from Netflix that has been sitting in my queue for a while.

The movie was “Scarface,” and there is no rational reason why it took 38 years for me to finally sit down and watch this piece of classic cinema. I like gangster movies, and have no objection to movies with a lot of violence and questionable language. Growing up, my brothers and friends raved about this movie. I’ve seen almost every movie with Al Pacino, and have even had a little crush on Michelle Pfeiffer since she put on the Catwoman costume back when I was 14 years old.  I don’t know how in the world this movie slipped through the cracks for so long while I wasted my time sitting through duds such as “Battlefield Earth” and “Dude, Where’s My Car?”.

I felt the exact same way about Simeri’s Beardsley Street Tavern when, after 13 years of living in Elkhart, I walked in for the first time. I had always frequented and preferred neighborhood places such as Gubi’s, Little Johns, and The Bulldog. Someone told my wife about the shuffleboard table, which we both loved to play. A friend even raved to me about how good the wings were years before I started to write this blog. There is no rational reason it took until 2015 for me to walk in the front door.

Simeri's serves their wings special after 5 p.m. on Thursdays. You can buy wings for 75 cents a piece. (Flavor 574 photo/Michael Tomko)
Simeri’s serves their wings special after 5 p.m. on Thursdays. You can buy wings for 75 cents a piece.
(Flavor 574 photo/Michael Tomko)

I had to wait almost another year to order the wings. It turns out their Thursday wing special starts at 5 p.m., and with me working in north Elkhart, I’d usually go there for lunch. Recently, I finally got time to make it out in the evening to “say hello to my little friend(s).”

I’m not a big fan of wings that are unbroken. Actually, I should correct myself and say I wasn’t a fan of wings that are unbroken. These whole wing pieces served at Simeri’s are actually easy to deal with. Other unbroken wings I have encountered were difficult to eat, as the pieces were hard to separate or, if trying to devour the whole thing, would inadvertently get sauce all over your fingers and face. But here, they were cooked so perfectly that the drummy and flat were easy to break apart. I didn’t even care about dealing with that useless nubbin. The skin was crispy and the chicken inside was firm and juicy.

The sauce was also perfect. It was a thin, buttery sauce with just the right amount of bite and a good kick of spice. With the crispy skin it was a fantastic combination of flavor and texture. The heat wasn’t overwhelming either. I would give it a 2 out of 4 on the heat scale.  I usually like a bit more kick, but it tasted so good I thought it was fine as it was.

You can’t go wrong with the price on Thursday evenings: a full wing is just 75 cents, which results in a CPW of 37.5 cents. It is the best deal you can get with wings in the area. Even on a regular night you can get eight full wings for $7.75. It’s a great deal, even when not on special.

There are not many bad things I can say about Simeri’s.  In fact, there are no bad things I could say. Their wings and ribs are top notch. The servers and bartenders are always friendly. The people that come in to eat are your neighbors. Get bored? You can challenge someone to a game of shuffleboard.

Like I said earlier, there is no rational reason it’s taken so long to get in here. You can believe me on this because, “I always tell the truth, even when I lie.”

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