New Mexico Pizzeria Owner is King of the Wings for Dry Rubs

Bob Yacone of Forghedaboutit Pizza won first place in the “Dry Rub” category and third in “XHot” at the National Buffalo Chicken Wing Festival.

Bob and Kim Yacone celebrate their victory at the National Buffalo Chicken Wing Festival.


Bob Yacone, co-owner of Forghedaboudit Authentic NY Italian Pizza in Deming, New Mexico, can call himself king of the wings after winning first place in the “Dry Rub" category and third place in “XHot” at the 2017 National Buffalo Chicken Wing Festival. This impressive win adds to Yacone’s second-place finish at the 2016 event for his popular and unique maple bacon wings.

Yacone won top “Dry Rub” honors for his maple-bacon dry rub. “There’s nothing like it,” he told the Deming Headlight. “The smell alone is good enough to win.”

After receiving an invitation to compete in the national festival, held over Labor Day weekend in Buffalo, New York, “I spent about a month tweaking the maple-bacon recipe, and I finally got it to where I wanted it,” Yacone said. “Nobody came close to my recipe, and it was hands-down the winner.”

Wings are a specialty for Yacone, but don’t forget about Forghedaboudit’s pizzas. Earlier in 2017 the restaurant won first place in "Traditional Pizza" in the Southwest Region at the International Pizza Fest, held in March in Las Vegas. In addition to its win in the Southwest Region, Forghedaboudit placed second in the U.S. and fourth in the world. Forghedaboudit touts itself as the only restaurant in the nation with both first-place wins under one roof.

"I am so proud of the fact that Forghedaboudit Pizza is the only pizza/Italian restaurant that has been nationally and internationally recognized and awarded in both the pizza and wings category,” Yacone said. His two-oven method of cooking serves up authentic New York-style pizza, which is prepared on authentic Italian browning stones. "I try and bring the passion for pizza from New York. Our ingredients are shipped from the east coast, and the homemade sauce is made daily."

Additionally, Yacone is a finalist for the New Mexico Restaurant Association’s 2017 Hospitality Awards Restaurateur of the Year. 

Forghedaboudit is family-owned and operated by Yacone and his wife, Kim, who runs the front-of-house and finances, along with his daughter, Caleigh, who attends the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. Yacone says he serves more than 1,000 people per week at his location. He and his wife have plans to build a second restaurant location in Las Cruces, N.M. by the end of this year.


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