I recently sent out a tweet asking the Greater Raleigh area for chicken wing recommendations. I was embarking on the “Greater Raleigh Chicken Wing Quest” with my friend Evan, who happens to be quite the chicken wing critic. One of my Twitter followers suggested I try Locked and Loaded in Garner. I’ve only driven by Locked and Loaded but have never had the courage to go inside. You might be thinking, why’s that? Well, I didn’t know if I would fit in without pulling up on a Harley-Davidson.
Evan and I rolled up to Locked and Loaded in my sweet Honda Civic. We walked inside the restaurant and I was surprised to find families and bikers mingling inside. I definitely learned my lesson; don’t judge a book by its cover. We sat down at the bar and took in the atmosphere. Locked and Loaded is definitely a local joint; the bartenders knew just about everyone who walked up to order a beer and there are pictures of Locked and Loaded’s most loyal customers plastered on the walls.
We were greeted by a friendly waitress who explained that we came on the perfect night, Tuesdays are wing night! There’s also a cornhole tournament every Tuesday at 7pm, boy we were in for a treat.
Evan and I ordered the jalapeno spark plugs to start off our eventful evening, breaded and fried jalapenos filled with cheddar cheese. When I bit into the first jalapeno spark plug, hot cheddar cheese oozed out onto my fingers. I dunked the next bite of this delicious, fried goodness in the Locked and Loaded dipping sauce, further increasing the amount of mess. The sauce was excellent and added a creamy and slight spicy flavor to the appetizer. The jalapeno spark plugs were definitely a generous portion. This crispy, extra cheesy appetizer is the way to start off any meal.
I decided to order ten wings after splitting a pretty filling appetizer with Evan. The waitress told me I had to order Locked and Loaded’s famous butter and spice wings. She was correct! The wings had an amazing flavor and were perfectly crispy. Imagine biting into a piece of crispy chicken dipped in warm butter then rolled in a wonderful blend of salty and mild spices, delicious. I also ordered the mild buffalo wings; I was scared to get the suicide buffalo wings because I was nervous about killing my taste buds. The mild buffalo wings were totally fine for me; these wings would be perfect for someone who isn’t a huge fan of spicy food but still loves a great buffalo sauce.
Evan ordered the hot BBQ and “x-tra” hot buffalo wings. He lived in South America for a while so he is used to spicy food. Evan’s mentality when it comes to eating spicy chicken wings is quite different from mine: go big or go home. He enjoyed the wings and was brave enough to order five more suicide wings! If you like it hot, order like Evan.
I went outside after dinner to introduce myself to a few of the bikers hanging out and drinking a beer on the large patio. I met Cipher, the Road Captain of the Johnston County Enforcers Motorcycle Club. The Enforcers ride throughout North Carolina and one of their favorite spots to eat is at Locked and Loaded. Cipher was raving about the chicken wings and beer. He's definitely right. You need to hit the road on your motorcycle (or Honda Civic) and head to Locked and Loaded!
Written by Foodie Kristen.