Hell’s Kitchen - 1991. Pat and Eileen Hughes had just taken over a blue-collar, “shot and a beer” bar on 8th Avenue. Nestled among XXX video stores, it had served the neighborhood and its crusty cast of characters well. The neighborhood was in transition, and the siblings knew the bar was destined to change with it. They renamed the place “Scruffy Duffy’s” and so began the slow climb to its becoming one of the most successful bars NYC had ever seen.
Out went the old steam table, quite popular in NYC bars in the 70’s & 80’s, and in came a new menu of made to order bar food, with buffalo style chicken wings the star. The very first week of the new menu, a gentleman at the bar exclaimed, “these wings suck”! Rather than take offense, Pat welcomed the stranger’s criticisms and listened as the man rattled off a list of ingredients and sent him to the supermarket.
When Pat returned, the man led him into his own kitchen, rolled up his sleeves and taught him how to properly fry the wings to perfection and to make the now famous Scruffy Duffy’s Wing Sauce. From that moment on, the business boomed. That nameless gentleman - who had never set foot in the bar before that day and was never seen there again - has no idea the impact he had on their lives. His simple act of kindness was life-changing and is what makes Scruffy Duffy’s wings so special.
Scruffy Duffy’s is long shuttered (2008), but the wings live on here at Lansdowne Road. Many other places claim to have “World Famous Wings” but they will never duplicate the magic that makes our wings so very special!