I was drawn to Marilake Winery as it always stands out to me when taking the Carbondale exit from the Casey Highway. The outside is very new and modern, which is a bit out of place along that strip. Plus, you never really hear about a winery having a wing night, so we decided to get a little fancy and check it out. We arrived at Marilake at about 6:30 and it was surprisingly very packed. The parking lot was filled and all the tables were taken in the main room. Luckily, there were four spots open at the bar, so The Wing Men group took a seat and settled in. The inside has a long bar with plenty of seating as well as a number of tables to fit more people. Marilake also has a covered outdoor patio area. Unfortunately for us on our visit, this part was closed due to a private party, which I definitely contributed to the crowd inside. You can tell the whole place had a lot of work done in order to make it look very clean and modern. They had a pretty good selection of wine for you to enjoy with your wings, too. Marilake only suffered when it came to the timeliness of service and food. Due to how packed they were, it took a bit of time for our orders to get taken and quite a while for our food to arrive. I will say that the waitress was very apologetic and was super nice throughout the whole ordeal. Plus, she gave us the remote to control the TV in front of us, and, if you’re a usual follower of the Wing Men, you know we love out Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, so that was cool. Oh, and as a part of wing night, you get a free glass of wine with every wing order of $10 (you can split orders, by the way). The Wing Men were on official business, so we didn’t have any wine, but we were able to get pretty much free wine for the group due to our large order. I didn’t see this advertised anywhere on the menu or chalkboard, so it was a pleasant surprise. Overall, Marilake seems like a great place to hang out and enjoy some wine. I’d love to revisit when it’s less busier and we could hang out on the patio on a nice day.
The wings at Marilake were pretty decently sized. I felt like I had a mixed bag of some small, most average, and then some pretty big ones. 70 cent wings ($7.00 for 10) is a bit on the higher end for a wing night, but it’s not going to break the bank. Once you factor in the free glass of wine with your order, if that’s what you’re into, it makes it totally worth it.
To track our wing visits, I’ll often take a picture of the menu, which I did for Marilake. I also took a picture of their chalkboard since it stated it was wing night and had the flavors up there. I assumed at the time that the board and menu matched. Boy, was I wrong. As I list the flavors for this review, I’m noticing there are flavors on the menu not included on the board. Like, really good flavors that I’m super interested in. I wish I noticed this when we were there, but I only have myself to blame. Taking into account the board and the menu, Marilake offers a big selection of wings. They make most of the classics with a slight twist, such as the Chardonnay Herb Butter & Garlic. Then they have some really unique styles like Habanero Ranch and Vodka. While it’s not the biggest selection around, Marilake will certainly wow you with their interesting take on wing sauces. We may have to plan another visit in the near future to try out these other sauces that I totally missed.
I love it when a place has a lot of interesting flavors and allows orders of five so you can try a good variety. My first wing was the Buffalo Garlic Parmesan. I figured I would start with a classic. The wings were covered in Buffalo sauce with grated parmesan sprinkled generously on top. This is exactly as you’d expect from any other bar that you’ve been to, which is out of place for Marilake since all the other wings had a much better presentation. I’m surprised they didn’t have freshly shaved parmesan. Either way, the sauce was pretty typical for the combination. A nice buffalo sauce flavor with the parmesan cheese for balance. I felt like it was a bit lacking in the garlic department, to the point where it was pretty much non-existent. The Asian style was covered with a teriyaki, sticky like sauce, then drizzled with a sriracha aioli, and then topped with sesame seeds and scallions. I enjoyed these wings quite a bit, but I wish there was more sauce on them. Since they weren’t tossed in the sauce, there were some wings that were kind of dry, so I was really scraping at the plate to get more sauce. This is also true with the Wasabi Ranch. The Wasabi Ranch sure looked pretty, but they were very unbalanced. Some wings were covered in mostly the neon green wasabi sauce while others were covered mostly in the ranch sauce. Others hardly had sauce on them. When I was able to get a wing with good balance, these wings were delicious. If you haven’t had Wasabi before, be prepared for it to hit you right in the nose. Personally, I loved it. Also, it seems like they gave a damn about their ranch sauce as it had the look and taste of being homemade. Finally, I ordered myself the Bruce Sauce. This sauce is a mix of their house sauce, covered in queso and herbs. The herbs were cilantro, which I know could be a deal breaker for some people. I like cilantro, so I was more than OK with it. At first, I wasn’t sold on these wings, but they really grew on me the more I had. I enjoyed the mix of the queso and hot sauce. Plus, the cilantro somehow worked on these wings, which I did not expect. I’m happy Marilake is willing to try flavors outside the box and pull them off for the most part. I am looking forward to a future visit where I can try even more of their unique sauces.
Don’t ever say that the NEPA Wingmen don’t have any class or sense of sophistication. We won’t stand for such erroneous accusations. Just because we enjoy covering our faces with wing sauces as often as possible doesn’t mean we can’t wax poetic with the elite. We finally got show that we’re more than sports bar/dive bar guys by going to Marilake, which is a wine bar. At first I thought it was an actual lake but nope, it was a wine bar and it’s located in the easy to miss land that is Child’s. Child’s is sandwiched between Carbondale and
God’s Country Mayfield and if you’re driving 35mph between the Mayfield ballet and Dante’s Deli you’ll blow past it without knowing it. Since it’s an actual wine bar, there was wine all over the place. They make their own wine and it was proudly on display. The place is pretty new and it was in really good shape. It was also very clean like you’d expect a wine bar to be. That night, Marilake was bumping. I think there was a birthday party or something in the dinning room which is attached to the bar area. We sat at the bar and ere fortunate enough to be able to watch the Wheel and Jeopardy which was nice because it was nice to show everyone just how smart I was. It wasn’t weird at all that I answered questions with my pinky in the air. The atmosphere was a festive one. People were in a good mood. Our service was a little shaky. Our server was very nice and pleasant but according to her they’ve never been as swamped as they were on this particular evening. It took a fair amount of time to get drinks and also to get food. All things that I completely understand under the circumstances of the place being very busy. Like I said, the place is fairly new, so figuring out all the ins and outs of procedure comes with time. Our server was comfortable enough to apologize to us about all the waiting. Understandable but noticeable. The kind of thing that’s an easy fix. You wouldn’t expect a wine bar to want to push wings, but Marilake erases that assumption with the work they put into everything that happens there from their presentation to the wings themselves. Other wing joints, take notice. In vino veritas, and the truth is delicious.
Wing night at Marilake winery is Wednesday. On wing night, wings go 10 for $7. Putting my math cap on tells me that wings are around 60-65 cents a wing which puts them right around the new typical price that you see at most places. Can’t argue to much with that. The wings at Marilake have a nice size to them. If you get your typical order that you normally get on a wing night, you’ll be sufficiently full. You’re allowed to split orders in orders of 5, which I and probably you firmly enjoy.
This was a tough rating. No bones about it. I wrestled with this for a bit. It came down to emotion versus principle. A battle all of us have encountered many times in our lives. A battle that in my opinion defines who we are as a person. I learned a long time ago when giving an opinion of something that you need to take emotion out of the equation. I also learned that if you lose yourself, you lose everything. This is why Marilake gets an 8 and not a 9. It’s because they needed more flavors. They have 15 total flavors some of which are on a chalk board. I’m not sure if they change the ones on the board up often or if they’re always there. I’ve said in the last few years that for a place to get to a 9 from me they need to have around 20 flavors and be unique. Well Marilake have a good amount of unique and original flavors that you won’t find anywhere else. Flavors such as Chardonnay Herb, Vodka, Bruce style and Snoop style. Marilake really gives credence to the idea that wine people have more defined pallets with their wing creations. I hope they continue to raise the bar and try and make wings their thing when it comes to their food output. I hope they continue to make more of the wall flavors because it’s working for them.
I ordered my usual 20 because that’s what I do. Let me just say before I review what I got that the presentation of the wings were on point. As you can see they had a flare to them. Remember, we eat with our eyes. First lets talk about their hot which they call Marilake House. These weren’t just wings topped with Frank’s red hot. There was some other elements in there such as vinegar. The vinegar gave them a real nice twang. Like most hot, they weren’t scorching but they weren’t heatless either. They were right in the middle of the curve. Next up we have the Snoop wings, which is has nothing to do with the Doggfather but more to do with their hot, maple syrup topped with BBQ chips. Apparently, Snoop Dogg gets a real hankering for BBQ chips after he takes his medicine. The presentation of these wings were neat. Any time you top a wing with chips, I’m down with it. The mix of their house hot sauce and sweet syrup is one you don’t see often. It worked here. Then when you add the chips, you really have something. Thirdly, I got the Bruce style wings. Sadly, these wings weren’t associated with the caped crusader(we call that a call back) but they were associated with their house hot topped with their beer cheese and fresh herbs. The house hot was good but the beer cheese was out of sight. I think they have fries with the beer cheese so I recommend that as well. I’ve had some other beer cheeses before but this one might be the best I’ve had and coming from a wine bar, that’s saying something. Finally, the last flavor I got is an old stand by and that was Cajun style. It was a dry rub and it was loaded with a proper amount of flavor. Not to seasoned, not anywhere under seasoned. They were cooked well and had kick in all the right places. Even with all the cool, innovative flavors Mari Lake had the Cajun dry rub did it for me the most.