July 03, 2012

Chef Jeff Mcinnis

Chef Jeff McInnis of Yardbird Southern Table & Bar in Miami! Jeff created the recipe to reflect the local culinary influences of Miami while highlighting the season’s favorite cooking pastime: grilling.

The authentic southern recipe of Tea-Brined Chicken Wings with Tabasco Honey marries bright, tangy and cool summer flavors with the Chef’s signature flare for flavor.

Chef Jeff McInnis

Executive Chef and Partner of Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, Miami

Chef Jeff McInnis is the Executive Chef at Yardbird Southern Table & Bar in Miami Beach. Formerly chef at Miami's Ritz Carlon DiLido Beach Club and Gigi, Jeff rose to celebrity-chef status as a contestant on Bravo's Top Chef reality show competition in 2008.

Jeff’s 27-hour-prepped fried chicken and extensive bourbon menu at Yardbird has inspired praise from the New York Times and a James Beard nomination for Best Chef in the South.

Tea-Brined Chicken Wings with Tabasco Honey

Created by Chef Jeff McInnis, contestant of Bravo’s Top Chef

Executive Chef and Partner of Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, Miami


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 cups brewed strong tea
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorn
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 pounds chicken wings, each cut at joint, wing tip discarded

Tabasco Honey

1/2 cup Tabasco® brand pepper sauce

1/2 cup honey


Heat oil in a 4-quart saucepan over medium heat, cook onion and garlic 3 minutes. Stir frequently. Add tea, sugar, salt, peppercorn and thyme sprigs. Heat to a boil; reduce heat to low. Simmer10 minutes, until sugar and salt are completely dissolved. Set aside to cool completely.

Tabasco Honey

Combine Tabasco brand pepper sauce and honey in 1-quart saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil. Stir occasionally. Cover. Set aside until ready to use. Serve Tabasco Honey warm or at room temperature.

Chicken Wings

Place chicken wings in large non-reactive container; pour cooled brine over. Cover and refrigerate 12 to 24 hours, stirring occasionally.

Preheat grill to medium.

Remove chicken from brine (discard brine). Grill chicken wings 5 to 10 minutes, turning frequently. Serve with Tabasco Honey for dipping. Serves 6.

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