BBQ, Mild, Signature HOT Sauce, Sweet Jim (Sweet & Spicy), Hot BBQ, Teriyaki, Alfredo, Garlic Parmesan, Honey Mustard, Salt & Vinegar, Parm Style, BBQ Bacon Jam
A Close Encounter at the Moon Tavern - 01/12/22
Overall Rating: 84Lynch Serniak
Lynch's Rating: 42 out of 50Environment: 9
It’s official, we’ve finally been to our first alien-theme bar. The Moon Tavern is located in the Days Inn by Wyndham next to Idle Hour lanes. While I would consider this address Dickson City, the official address location is in Scranton. I wasn’t aware there was even a restaurant in the hotel until I saw recent posts on a local facebook group. I was drawn in by the odd alien mascot on all their flyers, so I made a note to check it out. The entrance to Moon Tavern isn’t very apparent when arriving, so be sure to check the side door of the parking lot for the way in. Once you enter, you’ll know you’re in the right spot because there are signs along the way advertising their various nights. Moon Tavern is certainly eclectic with their theme nights. We went on a Wednesday, which is their Line Dancing night. Unfortunately, we did not partake. They have other nights such as a tarot card reading, open mic night, and drag night. Be sure to check out their Facebook for all their events. The place itself is very large inside, with lots of seating at tables as well as seating at the long bar. We opted to sit at the bar. Our bartender was talkative and friendly, often boasting on how much they care about their food. You’ve got to respect the hustle. We had our order in place early and received our wings relatively quickly. It wasn’t very busy when we arrived around 5:30 PM, but it was filling in as we finished out meal. That Line Dancing crowd really packs the place. Oh, and did I mention they had alien stuff everywhere. From little statues, to a mannequin, to merch featuring alien graphics. They went all in on the alien theme.
Wing Size: 8
We’re in a new age of wing prices and size, so I think we need to account fo that appropriately in our rating. It is rare to find a wing night these days, but Moon Tavern technically offers one on Monday – be sure to check Facebook in case that night changes or there is a new one added during the week. Oh, and if you pay very close attention to Facebook, you may find a coupon for an even lower price on wings. On a normal night, wings are $14 for 10. And, if you get any special sauce, such as the BBQ Bacon Jam, you will have to shell out an extra $2. $16 for 10 wings is a bit high in my opinion, but these wings are very big, so there’s a balance there. And, while the prices are on the higher end, this is becoming the new norm for all places. Plus, the Moon Tavern truly does have some jumbo wings.
Wing Flavors: 7
Moon Tavern offers most of the traditional flavors, plus a couple interesting flavors to spice things up – and no, that is not a wing pun. Outside of your usual BBQ, Mild, and Hot sauces, Moon tavern does mix things up with a Teriyaki, Salt & Vinegar, and a Sweet & Spicy sauce. They also offer an Alfredo wing, which I can’t recall seeing at any other wing place. I’m sure it’s out there somewhere, but it certain never stood out to me before.
Wing Taste (x2): 9
Serniak and I placed a large order of 35 wings. We landed on 5 different flavors, and we definitely appreciated Moon Tavern accommodating our complicated selection, even to the point of giving us 7 wings of each flavor. The Signature HOT was very delicious. In fact, it is one of the best regular Hot sauces i’ve had in a while. The wing had a great peppery spice with plenty of flavor. I highly recommend these wings if you’re looking for a good hot. The Sweet Jim, which is defined on the menu as a sweet & spicy, definitely started as a sweeter sauce. The bartender indicated the spice would sneak up on you, and while it was there, I don’t think it ever overpowered the flavor. It was well balanced between the sweet & spicy. Again, another delicious wing. I had high hopes for the Alfredo sauce as the flavor was very intriguing to me, but I was ultimately let down. Out of all the wings we tried, this was the most dull. It was a creamy, white sauce, which is exactly what you’d expect for Alfredo. I felt like it could have used a bit of a stronger cheese or salt flavor to amp it up. It wasn’t bad by any means, but there are other flavors worth trying in front of this one. The BBQ Bacon Jam is a sweeter, sticky sauce with bits of bacon and onion. While I’m generally not a huge fan of BBQ sauces, this wing still had a decent flavor. Finally, the biggest surprise for me was the Garlic Part. Usually, I stay away from Garlic Farm wings because I just don’t get the enjoyment from them. In my opinion, I feel like they are usually bland. At Moon Tavern, they make some truly delicious Garlic Part wings. The wings are a butter base, covered in plenty of garlic and parmesan cheese. Be sure to pick off any bits that may fall off the wings because with all the toppings, these wings truly bring the flavor.
Serniak's Rating: 42 out of 50Environment: 9
No, your NEPA Wingmen did not have a close encounter of the 4th, 3rd, 2nd, or even 1st kind on this journey. I mean, I suppose anybody could be an alien like a reptilian who are known to be shapeshifters but I’m going to say we probably didn’t encounter any EBEs.
Oh, just a heads up; I’m going to be using a great deal of UFO and alien jargon in this article that I have amassed over the last 25 years. Not sure when I’ll get another chance to flex this part of my brain again.
Our story begins in Dickson City where we went to a newly materialized establishment called the Moon Tavern. The mothership is located in the Days Inn hotel next to Idle Hours Bowling alley. Formerly Clam Diggers, the Moon Tavern in a potential body snatcher situation, is now in the space in the hotel.
It was slightly a challenge to discover where the entrance was of the Moon Tavern. There weren’t any visible lights, signs, or any strange markings that indicated where the entrance was. We eventually that on the side of the building facing the lanes was where you enter. I’m sure there’s an entrance from inside the hotel but we decided we didn’t want to go that route.
When you enter the bar, you instantly can understand why it’s called the Moon Tavern. There’s alien stuff all over the place. T-shirts with aliens, manikins wearing alien clothing and a 6ft alien figure wearing a spacesuit perfect for traveling lightyears across the universe. Aliens all over the place is what is happening here.
The place is really big inside. It’s non-smoking and is quite clean. There are two pool tables, a few TVs around the bar watching human programming, and an area for live music. You definitely can see how this alien-themed bar can morph into a place that throws a great concert or turns into a club of some kind.
The leader(our bartender and owner of the joint) was quite possibly the nicest entity on this side of the Milky Way. It’s possible that he was so courteous, polite and so damn down to Earth with us because he is, in fact, an alien he wanted to put our minds at ease throughout the whole experience something that the nice, benevolent aliens do when they abduct people. That or he is just a genuinely wonderful individual.
He did chat with us a bit giving us the low-down on how the place came to be and the tireless work he puts into his food especially his wings. There was a moment he pegged us for food critics. We respectfully lied to him. But did we? I don’t know if were food critics. We love wings and then write and talk about them. Does that make us food critics? I couldn’t tell you.
This gentleman gave us the run down on all the wing flavors we asked about and let us in on some of the nuances about each of the flavors. That was nice.
I can tell you that he didn’t treat us any differently than anyone else there regardless if he was on to our motive. He was chatting it up with everyone else there.
A fun fact about the Moon Tavern is that nobody there had any UFO sightings, encounters with the Men in Black, or alien beings but some of the staff said there was a ghost that occupies the space. I’m not sure if the ghost is a ghost of an alien or not. Juries out on that one.
But overall, the Moon Tavern was a comfortable place to sit, have a beer and simply shoot the shit about anything.
Wing Size: 8
This was hard to rate when there wasn’t a pandemic affecting production and shipping. With everything that’s going on, I just feel weird, as if I’ve been exposed to swamp gas, deciding what’s a fair price for wings in this day and age.
What I will say about the wings at the Moon Tavern is that they are large and bulky. They’re like Bob Sapp if he was a chicken wing except these wings won’t knock you out.
The price for wings at the Moon Tavern is 10 for $14. Or, you can get 25 for $28. I think that’s fine considering how society is putting the value of chicken wings on the same scale as Filet Mignon and other delicate cuts.
Wing Flavors: 7
12 flavors are what you’re going to get at the Moon Tavern. There’s some interesting ones in there as well. There’s a BBQ bacon jam, salt, and vinegar alfredo, and a sweet Jim’s.
All the domestic(typical flavors) ones such as a signature hot, honey mustard and BBQ are there as well.
I would love to see some flavors incorporate ranch. Ranch is a bonified winner that I don’t think is humanly possible to deny. Mix that with anything and you have something that people will travel through the stars to get.
Wing Taste (x2): 9
I don’t throw out 9s like they’re going out of style or anything like that. You have to earn it. The Moon Tavern earned it and I must say I didn’t see it coming. I’m glad I was way wrong. These wings were fantastic. The size of them, which I already covered, was on point but so was how they were cooked. There was a bit of a twist to them, at least there was for me. As I was consuming them, I noticed that they seemed like they were baked. Eventually, I mustered up the courage to ask the leader if they were in fact baked. He let me in on how the process goes down as if he was showing me a star map or telling me how the people of this planet need to get rid of all our nukes.
He told me they’re par-baked. Me not knowing having any earthly idea what that meant needed further clarification. He said they’re baked for a bit but then they’re tossed in the fryer. I, naturally, said that that means they’re half-baked. Not sure why the phrase half-baked isn’t used here but I really think it should be.
Anyway, Lynch and I split 35 wings getting five flavors. The first I’ll go over is the signature hot. Our man, the leader, explained the signature hot. It wasn’t no Frank’s red hot and butter. There were some complexities going on in there. They had heat, but there were real flavors happening. Perhaps some species such as cayenne and paprika were happening. I’m not sure. I just know that I’d love to have more of that sauce to put on other foods. It was excellent.
Next was the Sweet Jim, which was their version of a sweet heat wing. It was exactly that. They had a great savory taste with the sweetness but then after a few seconds upon completion the back of your throat would get overrun as the Taylors did in the famous Hopkinsville alien encounter back in 1955(this reference was a bit forced I admit… not unlike how aliens forced themselves on Travis Walton). The heat of the Jim’s sweet heat arrived and it was wonderful.
The alfredo was my least favorite of the bunch. It’s not like they were unbeatable or anything like that. I just think they were lacking a little something. I think that little something was something like parmesan cheese or perhaps even something like a Locatelli cheese. Just something that gave it some kind of bite, some kind of tongue grabber. They looked the part. They just needed that little extra.
Up next we had the BBQ Bacon Jam. Now, I think we all can surmise without the use of any kind of telepathy that I’m a big bacon guy. What I’m not is a big chunk of onion guy. These wings had not just large pieces of bacon but perfect-sized pieces of onion. Those onions really made the wing. They gave the sweetness of the jam and the saltiness of the bacon that added twang that propelled this flavor over many other bacon-infused wing flavors.
Lastly and what I think was the best wing I had was a simple garlic parmesan. You might be thinking that my brain might be damaged from some sort of alien implant surgery gone wrong but I’m telling the truth you have to believe me. The garlic parmesan at the Moon Tavern was out of this world(I’m hoping by now you were expecting that to be said). First, they really should be called butter garlic parm because they were doused in butter. That’s always good. Next, the garlic they used wasn’t just minced garlic. It was almost like some sort of garlic sauce that was thick and beyond flavorful. Finally, the amount of parm cheese they spread on them would make any Nordic blush. It just goes to show you that you can specialize in the classics and yield amazing results.