Hometown Eats: Tammy’s Grill

Published: Feb. 2, 2023 at 5:05 PM EST
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MARTINSVILLE, Va. (WDBJ) - The Super Bowl is almost here, and you might be searching for the perfect chicken wing for your party.

WDBJ7′s Logan Sherrill found them at Tammy’s Grill in Martinsville for this week’s Hometown Eats.

“Let’s make your taste buds happy today. You having a bad day? Let us make you happy. Come and eat a good chicken wing,” said Tammy’s Grill owner Naquias Johnson.

Food is supposed to bring joy and that’s exactly what you’ll find on the menu at Tammy’s Grill in Martinsville.

“The best wings in the area, for sure,” said regular customer Brittany.

But don’t just take her word for it; let the 2022 Roanoke Wing fest hardware do the talking.

“We won third place overall and we won the people’s choice as well, it was amazing and a humbling experience and something I’ll cherish for the rest of my life,” said Johnson.

Naquias Johnson’s mother Tammy always wanted him to open a restaurant. So, before she passed away, Naquias promised her he would trade in his semi-truck for a little red food truck in 2018.

“When she was passing away I promised her that we would take care of everything and I had to name the restaurant after her,” Johnson proudly said.

It didn’t take long with these wings before they upgraded to a bigger trailer, but even that quickly became too small.

“When we realized that we had orders from one end of the truck to the other and we only had a little bit of space to move and bumping shoulders, it was time to get something bigger,” said Johnson.

Destiny then led to the Holiday shopping center on Virginia Avenue.

From four wheels to four walls, bright orange because it resembles the color of buffalo sauce. Something else you’ll notice alongside the awards, artwork of two very important women, Naquias’s mother Tammy and Grandmother Eveline.

“They’re my guardian angels for sure. They really, really are. They molded me to be the man I am today,” said Johnson.

“I am so proud of him, so proud. He has made the whole family proud,” said Johnson’s aunt Deborah Waller.

Only wings and fries are on the menu with plans to expand down the road but for now, the focus is delivering the best wing possible.

“We’ll cross those bridges when we get there. We’re going to get the flow right and keep the wings going for now,” said Johnson.

Lots of wings fly out of this kitchen, up to 2,000 per day, and with his guys Demar and Marquise by his side, Naquias has nearly 20 sauces and dry rubs on boneless and bone-in wings to concoct the perfect taste of heaven.

“‘I’m telling you right now, without them I wouldn’t be able to do any of this. I love them guys and I appreciate everything they do,” said Johnson.

And when the kitchen is having a good time, trust me, you taste it in every bite.

“He said he’ll sling them to the ceiling!” Johnson joked as the wings were being tossed in the sauce bowl.

“The wings are just good, all the sauces are good, juicy wings. The fries are really, really good. Seasoned just right,” explained Brittany.

“I’ve been here twice this week and it’s been awesome, just wonderful,” said Aunt Deborah.

“If you’re a big fan of wings, you need to get to Tammy’s Grill,” said Brittany.

Surrounded by family, Naquias is living his dream, one wing at a time.

“Tammy. I’m going to keep her name alive forever. She’s going to live on forever through me as long as I’m here,” Johnson said.

Tammy’s Grill, a divine hometown eat.

You can find Tammy’s Grill 1854 Virginia Ave, Martinsville, VA 24112.

Johnson also wanted to give a shout out to the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce’s startup program for helping them with the funds to open the brick-and-mortar location. You can find more about that story HERE.