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Wing purists surely rankled as ranch dressing coming to National Buffalo Wing Fest

State News

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The National Buffalo Wing Festival will have Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing as a sponsor in this, its 18th year.

The idea of ranch dressing alongside wings may not be a surprise to people who flock to Buffalo for the Labor Day Weekend festival. Some of these people may also call them “Buffalo wings”. Quotes are ours.

In Western New York, it’s an oft-debated and even overdone topic across social media and in any respectable tavern, with some people drawing a hard line: No ranch, blue cheese only.

Ranch dressing has never been available at the festival, say organizers, until this year. Part of their ranch-ionale:

A survey conducted in 2018 with over 2,000 people by the National Chicken Council showed that 59% of respondents preferred ranch to 35% for blue cheese.

Over the years, Wingfest has drawn in attendees from all 50 states annually. For years, attendees have been asking for ranch and this year it will be available.     

National Buffalo Wing Festival press release

“We know Buffalo’s a blue cheese town, but again, I’m asked all the time about ranch dressing, can we get ranch dressing at the Wing Fest? And we are,” said Drew Cerza, festival organizer.

Hidden Valley will match funds that FeedMore WNY raises at the festival, which is from Aug. 31 to Sept. 1 at Sahlen Field in downtown Buffalo. Some 50,000 people went to the festival last year, and festival organizers said more than 100 styles of wings will be available.

A blue cheese dressing, Marie’s, is also a festival sponsor.

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