By Precious Barksdale
July 19, 2011
There’s a new chef in town and he’s with the latest chill spot in downtown Asheville, City Billiards. Joseph Allen is a man of innovative and creative cuisine. Although a native from Tallahassee Florida, the 22-year-old has lived in Asheville for 17 years. City Billiards opened its doors three weeks ago and just last week Joseph was invited to represent the restaurant in the Wing War competition promoted by Lush Life Today.
“I’m really excited about competing against people who have been in the restaurant business for years,” Joseph said. “I know we will go against some good competition.”
Competitors invited to the Wing War competition were East Village, Ed Boudreaux’s Bayou Bar-B-Que, Universal Joint, The Yacht Club and many other restaurants. Joseph entered his Smokey Mountain wings into the competition which he says creates a good mixture of spicy and sweet flavor.
When eating Joseph’s wings, they start with a candied yet savory kick in your mouth. For one moment you think his wings will leave you gasping for water, but all of a sudden the combined flavors balance out into a comfortable satisfaction.
“I think my wings will stand out just because of the fact that they’re so different,” Joseph said. “It’s like a sweet and spicy flavor explosion in your mouth and people’s first reaction to it is wow because it’s edge is its first initial reaction.”
The Wing War competition began last Saturday at 6PM and ended with musical acts until 11PM. Lush Life Today also brought free pizza and bread sticks from last years winners of the Pizza War competition. Free wings and beer came in addition to the $10-12 admission fee.
“I’m just happy to gain the experience of being in the Wing War competition,” Joseph said. “Even if I don’t win, I think this will bring City Billiards and myself exposure.” “What if some awesome guy tried my wings one day and says he wants to bottle my sauce?”
Joseph’s a young guy and only time will determine his progression and expansion in culinary arts. Although City Billiards did not win this years Wing War competition, Joseph seemed content with the end result.
“It would’ve been nice to win the competition, but like I said in the beginning, I’m just glad to be given a chance,” Joseph said. “I’ve been cooking for 8 years now and I want to be successful in the future.”