Superwings, A Taste of the Caribbean in Brooklyn
For a taste of the Caribbean in NYC, Superwings is the perfect destination to indulge in an array of tropical flavors. I had the chance to meet Colette Burnett, the Founder and CEO of Superwings, during a visit to Trinidad. Upon my return to NYC, I interviewed her at Superwings in Crown Heights, Brooklyn.
Caribbean Inspired Wings
The Superwings menu offers Caribbean flavored wings, one to represent each of the 16 different islands. 14 of these flavors are permanent fixtures on the menu. The other two are rotating “super special flavors.” The tastes range covers everything from mild to super spicy and fruity to tangy. There are even some surprise flavors one may not expect to find on a chicken wing, such as tamarind.
Colette Burnett, the Founder and CEO of Superwings, is a native of Trinidad. She and her team are constantly discovering different native Caribbean flavors that they can mix with chicken wings. Colette is full of enthusiasm about wings and celebrating the best tastes of the Caribbean.
People visit Superwings from all over the world. There is even a map on the wall where tourists from all over the globe have signed. They also have a very loyal local following of local patrons. Superwings is very accessible and has a fun ambiance.
“delighting guests with flavors that remind them of sunshine and beaches”
while also educating them about the diversity Caribbean cultures through the expression of vibrant tropical flavors and other items on the menu.
Colette says her work is “heart work. Not hard work” and her team focuses on excellence everyday.
I asked Colette if chicken wings are popular in Trinidad. They actually are not. However, she believes that this is changing. People in the Caribbean who used to discard wings thinking they had little value compared to the rest of the chicken, are starting to following more of the USA ‘wing is king’ mentality.
The next step for Superwings is to bottle their sauces and to formulate an exportable sauce line that can be sold into supermarkets and on line. Colette also likes the idea of having sauces available for guests that wish to take home these flavors and try making wings at home.
Most requested wing flavor in NYC:
‘Ginger Buff,’ a medium mild spiced Buffalo base that is enhanced with a kick of ginger. According to Burnett, this wing flavor also embodies the ‘New York flair.’
Most requested side dish in NYC:
Spinach Bites. They are fritters that resemble Saheena, an East Indian delicacy in Trinidad, that are made with spinach and authentic seasonings from Trinidad.
A thing you may not know:
Superwings won Bobby Flay’s Throwdown with the ‘Trini Tamarind’ flavor.
Interesting food fact:
In the USA the chicken wing is the most desirable and expensive part of the chicken.
Superwings pilots a community service program called ‘Cooking With Kids’ where they partner with 2 local Brooklyn schools, MS2 Parkside Prep and Brownsville Mott Bridges Academy to serve 400-600 kids every year. The program promotes the love of cooking to children and also nurtures those among them who dream of and aspire to be chefs. Superwings even discovered Devon Dandus, their current ‘Sous Chef Extraordinaire” as a result of this program.
Superwings also hosts, along with City of Hope, an annual “Back to School Give Back Event” during the month of September where they give away thousands of backpacks and supplies to scholars. The event also corresponds to the restaurant’s anniversary month of September 2009.
1218 Union Street
Brooklyn, NY 11225
(At Nostrand Ave.)
Monday-Saturday 12pm -11pm
Sunday 12pm -10pm