Origins of Names: Buffalo Wings, Air Knives

As far as I know there is no evidence that there has ever been any buffalo mutations which resulted in sprouting wings. So how did deep-fried chicken wings come about with the moniker of Buffalo wings? As the story goes, it started on a friday night at the Anchor Bar owned by Frank and Teressa Bellissimo located in Buffalo NY.

It was a Friday night, and since people were buying a lot of drinks,  they wanted to do something nice for them at midnight when the mostly Catholic  patrons would be able to eat meat again. Being overstocked with chicken wings which normally are thrown away or reserved for stock, Teressa’s husband Frank had told her to do something with them and that is when she came up with the idea of deep-frying them and tossing them in cayenne hot sauce.

They were initially offered for free and were served with blue cheese dip as hors d’oeuvre at the bar. The locals were simply refered to them as wings. Outside the area they called them Buffalo Wings. And that is where the moniker Buffalo Wings came about.

In the industrial world we have curious monikers of our own.

  • Tote pans – these are hand carried parts containers. Tote is a southern expression for carry. Thus a pan that can be carried.
  • Towmotor – name associated with a lift truck. Towmotor is the name of a manufacturer most prevalent in the early days of lift trucks.
  • Monkey wrench – adjustable wrench patented by Charles Moncky
  • Crescent wrench – An adjustable spanner or adjustable wrench trademarked by the Crescent Tool Company now owned by the Apex Tool Group, LLC
  • Air Knife – initially termed an air doctor or air blade used for non contact removal of ink from the non-printing surfaces of an intaglio printing plate. Doctor blades where typically used for this application hence came the term air doctor or air blade. Eventually the term evolved into air knife since it produces a blade of air.

Joe Panfalone, Application Engineer
Phone (513) 671-3322
Fax   (513) 671-3363