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Food Travel

Reading, PA: Jimmie Kramer’s Peanut Bar

Looks like Mr. Peanut's weirdo cousin from Kansas.
Looks like Mr. Peanut’s weirdo cousin from Kansas.

I had the best wings in my life at where it all began – Anchor bar in Buffalo. Since then, nothing ever came close to beating those juicy wings with awesome hot and sour buffalo sauce. I don’t know what they do there, but they have been doing right ever since, and they are still churning out really good stuff for customers daily. J. Timothy Tavern’s in Hartford, CT is pretty good, but their sauce is way too spicy; I had heard that Kramer’s in Reading churn out decent wings too, and so I came – I can’t think of any other reasons to be in Reading. Maybe the Pagoda.

It is a mix of 20th century fanciness and Reading's casualness.
It is a mix of 20th century fanciness and Reading’s casualness.

I parked right outside of the bar. They have free customer parking elsewhere, but the city doesn’t charge for street parking on the weekends, so that’s a score. The city looks deserted, and I hurried into the ancient looking tavern. Even though it is 1pm in the afternoon, the restaurant is lively – I did not expect so many customers. The peanut bar felt half fancy and half casual, and I meant that literally. Nice tableware lie on the tables in one side of the restaurant, while I head towards the bar in messier looking part of the restaurant. A wall divides these two halves and act as a barrier. Peanut shells littered the floor and I’m in for a treat. The bartender offered me a large bowl of peanuts as soon as I sat down.

Free peanuts!
Free peanuts!
Comes with the default - carrots, celery, ranch and blue cheese.
Comes with the default – carrots, celery, ranch and blue cheese.

Usually, I would had ordered 20 wings (it comes in 10s). I did not do that because I hadn’t ate wings for a long time, and thought that 10 was sufficient. However, I did order a cup of clam chowder to supplement that, and it was pretty tasty. At most places, Buffalo sauce would be drizzled on top of the wings before they are served; Anchor bar probably drown the wings in the sauce. This isn’t the case at the Peanut bar. The wings are fried, but served in a bowl with the sauce at the bottom, kept dried and intact. I thought this is clever because everybody has their preferences regarding the amount of sauce should be on their wings. The buffalo sauce is slightly hot and plenty of sour, while the wings themselves are crispy on the outside, but not that juicy inside. The wings aren’t tiny though – I just wish they are bigger.

Sauce is all at the bottom.
Sauce is all at the bottom.

Even though Kramer’s is famous for wings, nobody seemed to be getting them. They are treated more like an appetizer, rather than an entree. The Buffalo wings are pretty good, and are definitely better than average wings out there. I would get them more often from Kramer’s – only if Reading is closer to my place!

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Visited: Nov 7th, 2015 at 1pm for lunch
Address: 332 Penn St, Reading, PA 19602
Website: http://www.peanutbar.com/

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