Mayhem & Stout Makes a Winning Buffalo Chicken Sandwich
Earlier this summer, Chris went on a search for the best buffalo chicken wrap in Midtown, reminding me just how well buffalo wings translate into sandwich form. So when I stopped by Mayhem & Stout last month, I was intrigued by buffalo chicken combination on their menu. It was only a matter of time before I made my way back to try it.
Mayhem’s buffalo chicken sandwich ($8.25) is unique for a number of reasons, the biggest being that the chicken is braised and pulled, not fried, as is typical for a buffalo chicken sandwich. Additionally, traditional buffalo sauce is switched out for a buffalo “vin,” which I assume means it’s a buffalo white wine sauce. Instead of bleu cheese dressing, Mayhem’s sandwich comes dressed with a bleu cheese aioli. And last but not least, Mayhem completes the sandwich by adding a traditional wing side to its sandwich – pickled celery.
Of course, it’s one thing to create a gourmet version of a classic sandwich, but it’s another thing entirely to make one that’s good, and maybe even better than the original. Personally, I think Mayhem & Stout have succeeded on all points. The chicken, which, I was afraid might be dry despite being braised (because chicken is almost always dry), was moist and quite good. The buffalo vin, which I admit wasn’t discernibly different from regular buffalo sauce, mixed well with the chicken. It also dripped out of the sandwich, creating puddles of spicy goodness that could be sopped up with bread for an extra buffalo bite.
The bleu cheese aioli was good as well, adding a creaminess to the sandwich, but the bleu cheese flavor probably isn’t as pronounced as most would hope. I’m not a huge bleu cheese fan (I’m working it into my repertoire slowly), so it was fine for me, but I think I might be in the minority among buffalo chicken fans.
The best part of the sandwich, in my opinion, the one thing that elevated it above lesser buffalo chicken sandwiches, was the pickled celery. It added a nice crunch to an otherwise soft sandwich, and it provided a good, vinegary bite that cut through the heaviness of the braised chicken and buffalo and bleu cheese sauces.
I’ve now tried three of Mayhem & Stout’s popular combinations, and for my money, the buffalo chicken sandwich is the best of the set. If you’re a fan of buffalo chicken and willing to try something a bit different, you’ll want to give it a try.
Mayhem & Stout, 711 2nd Ave. (btw 38+39th), (212) 986-1600