Spicy and zesty chicken wings

Spiced Chicken Wings with Togarashi Citrus Honey

Chicken wing sauce:
1 quart yield - sauce for 3 lbs of wings - for 8 people


  • 2 cups honey
  • 1cup fresh squeezed lime juice
  • .5 cup rice wine vinegar
  • .5 bunch cilantro - washed and finely chopped
  • 5 cloves finely chopped garlic
  • 4 minced Serrano chili peppers
  • 1 TBSP ichimi togarashi (this is a Japanese powdered red pepper, available in Japanese markets)
  • 1.5 TBSP kosher salt
  • 1 TBSP Vietnamese fish sauce

Procedure: mix all ingredients thoroughly, taste for seasoning.

3 lbs chicken wings - soak in buttermilk for 3 hours

Rice Flour:

  • 4 cups rice - toasted in a 350 degree oven until light golden brown (Japanese short grain rice if possible, though any white rice will work)
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 2 TBSP kosher salt

Drain buttermilk from wings, immediately toss with rice flour mixture until well coated. Place breaded wings on a sheet pan (be sure to space wings to allow even cooking). Bake wings in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 12 minutes. Transfer baked wings to a 350 degree deep fryer (Rice oil recommended) and fry for 4 minutes until crisp and golden brown. Toss wings with sauce and serve on a large ceramic platter. Garnish chicken wings with chopped scallions and remaining sauce.

Note: Look for chicken that is grown naturally - free range if possible.

EVENT: O Izakaya Lounge to Host An NFL Celebrity Servers Benefit Event Athletes Will Serve and Mingle To Raise Funds for Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade

WHO: San Francisco 49ers veteran, Dontarrious Thomas and Atlanta Falcons safety Thomas DeCoud, who was recently drafted after a successful career with the Cal Bears and more.

WHAT: O Izakaya Lounge will host a celebrity server's event to raise funds to benefit the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade with several Bay Area professional athletes serving guests, signing autographs and mingling with the crowd. In addition, there will be a raffle with fabulous prizes, including night stays at local Joie de Vive properties, dinner at local Joie de Vive restaurants, Spa Certificates for Kabuki Springs & Spa and more. A portion of the proceeds from the drinks poured, 100% of any tips given to the "servers," proceeds from the raffle and any additional donations received during the event will directly benefit the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade, which provides fire protection for the residents and businesses along Highway One, from Hurricane Point on the north end to the Monterey/San Luis Obispo County line on the south. Formed in 1974, the Fire Brigade consists of community members who volunteer their time to provide fire and emergency services to all of Big Sur with a spirit of teamwork, respect and integrity.

WHEN: Tuesday, July 22, 2008, 6:00 - 9:00 p.m.

WHERE: O Izakaya Lounge, 1625 Post Street (between Laguna and Buchanan), inside the Hotel Kabuki

About O Izakaya Lounge:
A modern American twist on the popular Japanese izakaya houses (drinking establishments that also serve food, usually shared by everyone at a table), O Izakaya Lounge features exceptional Japanese cuisine in a convivial, sports-themed atmosphere. Menu specialties include Berkshire pork belly braised with house-made kimchee, Mendocino seaweed salad with mustard greens and umeboshi and saba with beets, cucumbers and freshly grated wasabi. An extensive and well-stocked traditional bar featuring a wide variety of Japanese beers, creative cocktails, wines, shochus and sakes compliments the menu.

Hotel Kabuki
1625 Post St
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 614-5431

About Chef Nicolaus Balla
Nicolaus Balla, executive chef at O Izakaya Lounge at the Hotel Kabuki in San Francisco, is a graduate of the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Balla, who developed a menu of Japanese-style shared plates, or Izakaya, for O, nurtured his love for Japanese cuisine at a young age, cooking with his mother's soy sauce and miso, and favoring sushi rolls over hamburgers as a high school student in rural Michigan. His father's long-term girlfriend, a native of Japan, has also served as a valued influence, acting as a cultural liaison and providing Balla with critiques and advice on his Japanese cooking endeavors. After graduating from culinary school, Balla moved to San Francisco and served as a line cook at Ozumo, the highly regarded and critically acclaimed contemporary Japanese restaurant. He then accepted a line-cook position at Americano Restaurant at Joie de Vivre's acclaimed Hotel Vitale, where he honed his craft and rose to the rank of sous chef.

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