Steven Earnest, owner of Lord of the Wings, is operating out of Smokin’ Bar-B-Que, located at 200 E. Fifth St. in Dayton.
The Dayton native said he started in early April and business has been “booming” ever since.
Lord of the Wings is open from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Customers can expect crispy, crunchy chicken cooked with love and topped with a variety of sauces or seasonings, Earnest said. He offers traditional or boneless chicken wings, fried potatoes with onion, fried corn and bread with the hope of expanding to chicken sandwiches and chicken salads.
Cooking chicken wings and fried potatoes and baking biscuits came naturally to him at 8 years old watching his late great-grandmother in the kitchen. Nearly 30 years later, her recipes live on.
“Every day I get to relive me watching her in the kitchen and now I’m doing it for a living,” he said.
Prior to operating as Lord of the Wings, Earnest worked at several restaurants throughout the Dayton area as well as a factory. He didn’t start cooking for the public until about eight years ago when he prepared honey lemon chicken wings for his son’s chicken and fish fry fundraiser. Ever since, his requests for wings has grown.
“I’m here to stay,” Earnest said. “Lord of the Wings is not something that’s seasonal or temporary. I’m passionate about it. Come try it.”
Smokin’ Bar-B-Que owner AJ Bauer, who is no longer a part of the restaurant’s day-to-day operations, told Dayton.com his general manager suggested he contact Earnest with the opportunity to operate out of the restaurant when he was in between locations. Bauer said it was an easy decision because he was familiar with Earnest’s cooking and aware of his social media presence.
Smokin’ Bar-B-Que is currently operating on a flexible schedule with select evening and weekend hours.
Lord of the Wings is bringing a new sense of vibrancy to the longtime downtown Dayton restaurant with a late night crowd and good vibe, Bauer said.
Lord of the Wings accepts cash or cash app only. In the future, Earnest hopes to operate a food trailer to bring his wings to other areas because he believes they are the best wings on this side of the Mississippi.
In March, Earnest and Michael Baxter, owner of Mother Clucking Chicken Coop, battled it out in a chicken wing competition at The Arena Sports Bar in Dayton. When it came to delivering the best wings, Baxter won the judge’s vote and Earnest won the people’s vote.