Is there anyone here from western New York?
It's one of the population centers of the state, has a decent food scene, and yet almost nobody posts about it!
I'm making my semi-annual trip to the Buffalo area next month, and I desperately need suggestions!
I still dream about the wings (with perfectly rendered crisp skin and a glaze of sauce that was actually HOT) and the tender, rare beef on weck that I got at Bar Bill in East Aurora. Been at least a year, hope it's still as good.
Some currently hot places are Sato, Sun (Burmese) Restaurant, Dino BBQ, Blue Monk, Martin Cooks, and Resurgence Brewery.
I am in Rochester but I travel to Buffalo a fair amount. We just recently tried Seabar for sushi and it was quite good. Also there is a wine bar called Bacchus that has some very good food (on Chippewa). There was this orange beignet desert thing that was AMAZING! My favorite Indian in all of western new york is out in the suburbs of Buffalo-- Kabab and Curry (they just recently moved to Main Street in Williamsville). Hope that helps!
Just got back from Buffalo on 7/16/14, where I stayed for a week. I went up for The Taste of Buffalo as well as to visit my son who's a student up there. He's been living in Buffalo for 3 years now and brought me to some wonderful restaurants.
Blue Monk is referred to as a gastropub and we had a great meal there of mussels (my son), Poutine and the Mac n Cheese of the day. I have to say that it was the best mac n cheese I have ever eaten. As far as the poutine, I'd never had poutine before so I don't feel as if I can comment on it. The burgers going past our table looked wonderful! They're known for their beer selection........both draft and bottled.
Also went to Gi Gi's for genuine soul food. Looks like a little hole-in-the-wall and is popular with the residents of that neighborhood. There's also a Gi Gi's that serves Italian food but that's a different restaurant. My son had baby backs, mac n cheese and collards.......corn bread on the side. I had grilled ham, grits, 2 eggs and toast. We both had coffee and the entire bill, with tax, not including tip, was $20.12. One of my best meals up there.
For fine dining, we went to Mike A's at the Lafayette hotel and The Archer. The archer has an unusual menu with a lot of wild game on it. Both restaurants are kinda pricey and I liked Mike A's (I had steak) the best.
We didn't get wings while I was up there but I know that my son doesn't go to Duff's or the Anchor Bar for wings. They're both very tourist-y.
Last year, he took me to Shango, which was wonderful. They specialize in cajun style dishes and are known for their wines. We had great food there but didn't get there this year due to time constraints. Also, Sun is supposed to be one of the best restaurants in town but we never got there.
BTW, the Taste of Buffalo is held every summer during the month of July. I've been going up for two years now and have had a wonderful time!
Thanks for the suggestions! Shango and some of the north Buffalo/Amherst places sound interesting. My big limitations are that 1) I'll be based in Hamburg and 2) I'll be looking after my 89-year old mother, who loves to go out, but thinks The Grapevine is the height of haute cuisine. But we can always make her dinner at 5 and go out at a reasonable time....
Has anyone been to Merge? Or Miss Hot? Both their menus sound interesting.
The Taste of Buffalo is great: we were able to go two years ago.
I'd like to add some of my own South Towns favorites:
-Curly's, in Lackawanna. I've eaten here every trip for the past 4 years, and haven't had a bad meal.
-Savory's, in Hamburg. What diners aspire to: plain, decent cooking
-Root Five, in Hamburg. I was there earlier this year, when they had just changed their chef, and it was worth a repeat visit.
-Schwabl's, if it's re-opened by then. Ekl's is a poor second, and they don't seem to grasp the fact that a 4" step means they're not wheel-chair accessible, no matter how loudly they insist.
I love Miss Hot Cafe, especially their lunch special of braised pork (it's nicely-marbled pork belly, perfectly cooked bok choy, and hard-boiled egg). They have fun appetizers like fried jellyfish for the adventurous diner. The service sets some people off but it doesn't bother me that servers tend to either not speak English well or else are fluent but brusque. It's a "different" place and you either love it or hate it.