Local businesses expect super turnout

Feb. 02, 2013 @ 06:50 PM

Super Bowl Sunday is not only a huge day for football fans, it’s big business for local restaurants and bars.
At East Coast Wings & Grill on N. Main Street, virtually the entire day will be devoted to serving the restaurant’s namesake. The establishment’s dining room won’t be offering its usual fare because all of the fryers will be churning out the premiere Super Bowl food — chicken wings.
The restaurant will feature takeout orders only today, most of which will consist of the popular game-day food, according to co-owner Becky Springer.
“I ordered about 10,000 for the day. The history has shown that we can sell that many,” said Springer, who added that she might sell 2,000 wings on the restaurant’s biggest night of the year outside the Super Bowl. “I think the largest order we have right now is 300 wings for someone at one time.”
Liberty Steakhouse & Brewery on Mall Loop Road also expects wings to dominate today. The restaurant won’t feature it’s usual game-day experience with its big-screen TV showing the contest between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens because it will close before kickoff for an employees-only party, said Manager Joe Romero.
That doesn’t mean it won’t be doing business beforehand, however.
“We’ll get a lot of last-minute orders for chicken wings, people taking them to different parties,” Romero said.
The game itself is expected to be a big deal at JP Looneys on Samet Drive.
“We have tons of TVs. We have six projectors in the main dining room and TVs all around the restaurant. They’ll all be on the game,” said General Manager Carrie Cirba. “Mainly, people order wings, chips, fingerfoods, that kind of thing.”
Springer said business is strong on NFL playoff weekends and other times like New Year’s Eve, but nothing compares to tonight’s game for the restaurant industry.
“The Super Bowl is always an exciting time,” she said. “You get your pizza. You get your wings. You get all your snacks and all your sides going on and everybody brings something. It’s a great day.”
Chicken prices have risen of late, pushing the wholesale price of wings from around $1.11 a pound a year ago to $2.05, according to the National Chicken Council’s 2013 Wing Report.
As a result, East Coast’s prices have gone up on wings, but the increase isn’t expected to tamp down demand, Springer said.
“Our prices on wings haven’t changed,” said JP Looney’s Cirba.