Wild Wings Closed?

dano272 writes: Wild Wings Cafe is closed and the word on the street is that it’s money problems. A sign posted on the door said it would reopen on the 28th of December, but workers arrived to find the place still closed and no word why. I guess no one bothered to tell them. Merry Christmas, now go look for another job.

Does anybody know anything more about this? By all outward appearances, they seem to be quite successful.

23 thoughts on “Wild Wings Closed?”

  1. I moved away from Charlottesville in July and thus have not been part of the local “scene” (except here) for a while, but I have to say it wouldn’t surprise me much if they’re out of cash.

    I know there are a few others reading who can back me up: Lately they just didn’t seem to have their shit together. When the place opened, a bunch of us used to go there literally once a week — sometimes more. Then, after a time, they cancelled a bunch of their nightly specials and some of the buzz seemed to wear off.

    We stopped going because they got rid of one of the beer-related sunday night deals. There were also a few times, though, when the service was truly terrible, and a few others when the wings were inedible. If I remember right, they even screwed up the order at the city’s “bridge builders” ceremony honoring Alicia Lugo and John Conover.

    They were always more or less apologetic, but it really did turn into a sort of serial thing, to the point where I can think of a few people — people who love wings, in a really unhealthy way — who just stopped going on a regular basis.

    Maybe they just lost too much goodwill, like Trent Lott. If so it’s a shame, because there are a lot of good memories in that place.

    Maybe the local media will prove its detractors wrong and come up with a story within a couple of days, eh?

  2. I was down there Dec. 31 and the note on the door said the place was closed for good, didn’t it? Anyway, it told employees to call some number to get their checks.

    Too bad, I didn’t like the food, but I appreciated the live music, and that deck is one of the best dining settings in town.

  3. Rumor has it that they lost their liquor license for serving liquor to underage people, and they had to file bankruptcy. I don’t know how accurate that is, but I trust my source. :)

  4. Cville’s best location for picking up drunken underage UVA poontang is now history. Bummer!

    The sign on the door now reads "Business for sale"

    It’s been widely heard that they’ve been struggling since not long after they opened. God knows where they funneled all that cash to.

    The last post hits well on a lot of points that seemed to be the norm there, though they also seemed to be thriving most of the time.

    Word is that Coran Capshaw is buying it to start a new topless gentlemens club… Members only, $5 beers etc… And is already interviewing local UVA female talent looking to earn some extra shopping money. He’s getting in just under the wire before then new "anti-adult business" zoning kicks in within Cville proper. Smart guy. It should thrive with all the UVA frat boyz with plenty of parental cash to spend. I wonder if they’ll be part of the corner meal plan?

  5. As someone who eats an unhealthy number of chicken wings, it saddens me to see WWC leave Charlottesville. Sure, the service was abominable. Sure, the food was inconsistent. But, man, when the food was on — some of those wings were fan-tastic. Garlic garlic garlic, the boss, wild west, jalapeno cheddar — so good. Hands down beat any of the BW-3 flavors (though Maarten’s certainly was a peer in the flavor department).

    Ah, I suppose it wasn’t meant to last.

  6. Word is that Coran Capshaw is buying it to start a new topless gentlemens club… Members only, $5 beers etc… And is already interviewing local UVA female talent

    Yeah, Capshaw’s been “interviewing the local talent” for quite some time, though, hasn’t he? In a manner of speaking. For a fat old guy he sure does well for himself. I wonder why that could be …

    But no, the club sounds like a great idea. If they’d serve wings and beer, too, it might be enough to get me to move back down there.

  7. Garlic garlic garlic, the boss, wild west, jalapeno cheddar — so good

    Jalapeno Cheddar was ass and you know it. But The Boss! Oh, The Boss! And Colorado Copper! And Virginia Fireball and Old Yeller. All out on the roof deck on a Sunday night with extra blue cheese …

    Even if those good days were few and far between lately, thinking about them is getting me misty. I have to stop now.

  8. Doubtful. The building is owned by Gabe Silverman, who hasn’t appeared to be in a selling mood. Gabe rented the space to the owners of Wild Wings.

    The only value that ‘Wild Wings Cafe’ now has to a buyer consists of some used kitchen equipment and it’s brand as a place for students to go for music & wings. If you’re talking about turning it into a ‘gentlemen’s club’, that’s a whole different brand and image that the ‘Wild Wings’ name wouldn’t really add anything to.

    If I were Coran, I probably wouldn’t bother with a topless club in Charlottesville under any circumstances, since it would attract too much negative image surrounding any of his other more important projects around town.

  9. I think that there is an article in the cville weekly on ol’ WWC. Is there anything interesting in the article?

  10. Is there no link to the C-ville thing? I couldn’t find the story on their web site, though that may be my fault.

    Boy, I sure wish the goddamned Daily Progress would do something on this. It’s not only WWC closing that makes it interesting — though that would be enough for me, wing fan that I am. But that’s a historic property, and a strategic one, and one that the local media — and the Progress specifically — have given all kinds of coverage over the years.

    Anyone else remember how much (justifiable) coverage they gave the renovation of the building? Anyone else remember the giddy West Main Street series a couple of years back? About how Gabe Silverman was going to change the world? Well, the whole freakin’ enormous lot is empty again, except for an unpaved parking lot (still unpaved, I assume?) and a dingy train station.

    Now I’ve never won any fancy journalism awards or anything, but to me this seems like it has interesting implications for the city.

  11. The ‘Restaurantarama’ column mentions that building owner Gabe Silverman and co-owners of the entire Wild Wing chain were caught off guard that the local Charlottesville location was closing. The chain owners had been told the C-ville spot would close for the holidays but would then open back up. According to the article the WW folks had to find out from a CVille advertising account manager that the permanantly closed sign was on the front door. Silverman says lots of folks have called him about the space but if the former owners file for bankruptcy he could have to wait quite a while before new folks can move in.

  12. Silverman says lots of folks have called him about the space but if the former owners file for bankruptcy he could have to wait quite a while before new folks can move in.

    Bastards! That is definitely not “what Wild Wings is all about.”

    Thanks for the summary, by the way, and thanks to C-ville for being on the ball with their reporting, if not with their lame web site.

  13. The Progress finally gets around to writing about this. Of course it’s a day after the C-Ville is out on the street with news about it so maybe they flt forced to do something or maybe they finally noticed. The article says the same things as the C-Ville article and in some places actually less.

  14. From the Daily Progress article:

    “I think two things happened,” said Allan Cadgene, who with developer Gabe Silverman owns the Union Station property. “Sept. 11 hurt them, and then they got behind in payment [on] their taxes.”

    What?! Were a lot of people flying into Wild Wing? Was there a one-and-a-half year long Wing hiccup? Was there an arab-and-wing-joint backlash?

  15. the sooner all chain wing joints go down in flames, metaphorically or otherwise, the better. i tried to go see the second NFL game at BW3 last night. it’s godawful. they had to be above their fire code occupancy. and they were most definitely above their galoots-n-stankhos limit…which is a usual thing at the B-Dubs. although i guess it’s nice to have them sort of ghettoed together in one place, rather than out roaming the night in small packs.

  16. the sooner all chain wing joints go down in flames, metaphorically or otherwise, the better.

    I agree with you halfway, in that I do think B-dubs is super weak. I prefer the ones at St. Maarten’s, which I guess qualify as indie wings.

  17. GOOD LORD! You must not like BW3. Yet I have to agree with you about it. When it first open back way then, the wings were good. However, the last time I went there which was 2 years ago, the wings were half cooked and I think they were put in a microwave. They were really bad! Wild Wings were okay in the beginning, but again the longer they were in business the nastier the wings got.

  18. They almost always have bad service within two months of opening. The only way to have a chance at good service at BW-3 — weekday lunches. You can specify how well you want you wings cooked, the place is basically empty. Same with all those places; go when no one is there, and you’ll be king of the place (albeit with no under-age wanna-be Britneys up in the place).

    Besides, I think that the BW-3 crowd has Blue Light next on their take-over agenda!

  19. It really doesn’t surprise me that a business in this area would shaft its employees like this. I was told by a local once not to stay too loyal to a Virginia Company because of reasons like this. Other companies do similar things like this…Value America, Boxer Jam. If Wild Wings was gonna have to close, they should have told there employees…most who live on tips…to start looking. Seems like business as ussual

  20. Well actually I believe VA.COM and WW are two different things. With Value America, you had people moving to the area and making a good living with the promise of growth. I have heard stories of people giving up on their good paying jobs else where for the high life of Value America. Those people were paying homes and such before it came all crashing down. With WW, the people who mostly live on tips can just find a another job in town at a resturant. God knows there are so many.

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