Sometimes it’s important to pause a minute from the never-ending stresses of life, the relentless struggles that exist for those of us who commute to work via… just about any means of public or private transportation, the onslaught of sensory stimulation singular to summer in the city (fecund scents are everywhere) and appreciate the fact that, despite all the imperfections that exist in the daily grind, there are also, occasionally, small moments of perfection. Case in point: the chicken wings at Pok Pok Ny.
Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings are the platonic ideal of chicken wings. Big enough to hold plenty of succulent bites of meat, these wings are not just a vessel for the sauce that coats each tender morsel, but even if they were that would still be fine, because, that sauce. Oh! That sauce. Tangy, sour, spicy, sweet, and redolent of funkiness thanks to all that fish sauce, the sauce shellacks each wing, caramelizing the meat, and also serving the purpose of carrying a load of crispy fried garlic which adds much-appreciated crunchy texture to the dish.
Not a chicken wings fan? Only ever experienced them served lukewarm at Super Bowl parties? Don’t worry, these wings will change your mind and make a convert out of you. And, hey, if they’re good enough for ultimate Brooklynite Sir Patrick Stewart, who loves and endorses them, then they’re good enough for you.
Plus, unlike the way in which many things in this ever-changing city diminish in quality over time, Pok Pok’s wings have stayed as consistently good as when I first tried them, years ago. Wings of desire, indeed.
Try them yourself at Pok Pok Ny: 117 Columbia Street, Columbia Street Waterfront District
Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen