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'The Great Chicken Wing Hunt' at Palm Beach Film Fest

Staff writer

If your food and drink tastes run to Buffalo chicken wings and champagne, then this year’s Palm Beach International Film Festival has two very fine offerings.

The Great Chicken Wing Hunt” sees Matt Reynolds return to his hometown in upstate New York from his journalism job in Slovakia to track down the best Buffalo-style chicken wings he can find. From New York City to Buffalo’s Anchor Bar, the birthplace of the wing celebrating its golden anniversary this year, Reynolds travels 2,627 miles and eats 284 varieties of wings. Spoiler: The Anchor’s wings aren’t the best.

“We were drinking heavily late one night, and we got this idea to go back to the U.S. and have a wing tour,” Reynolds says early in his film. The tour, he adds, “Changed my whole life.”

Reynolds’ ragtag tour mates include his Czech girlfriend, a semiprofessional eater, an amateur saucemaker and a Hawaiian chef based in Prague. Their personal stories become as important as the hunt. At the party following Friday’s 8 p.m. screening in Palm Beach Gardens, Cabo Flats restaurant will prepare wings using the winning sauce from the film. The movie will be shown again at noon Monday.

At 6:30 p.m. Saturday and again at 7 p.m. Tuesday, the festival will take a look at the most famous wine in the world, “A Year in Champagne,” directed by David Kennard. This is the second in Kennard’s trilogy of wine films. The first featured Burgundy, and the third will be about port. Kennard introduces viewers not only to champagnemakers, but to the Champagne region of France itself, the sight of two of World War I’s bloodiest battles.

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