When skeptics - inside or outside of Buffalo - question the extent of the city's tourism renaissance, what's the proper way to respond?
That's a complicated question, but Thrillist - a digital lifestyle brand out of New York City - embraces the task in detail in its "Why Buffalo (Yes, Buffalo) Is America's Most Underrated City to Spend a Weekend."
The article's author, Matt Meltzer, spoke with a number of public figures - from 43North's Peter Burakowski to city planner Chris Hawley to former Buffalo Spree food editor Christa Glennie Seychew - to learn how the Rust Belt city recovered from post-industrial depression without sacrificing its blue-collar nature and reputation as the "City of Good Neighbors." Several anecdotes from his piece are warming reminders of the latter.
From a late-night visit to the Pink in Allentown to the downtown glamor of the Curtiss Hotel and Lucky Day, the author presents a strong cross-section of Buffalo's nightlife and food and drink. While excluding major community gathering spots such as Canalside and Larkinville may be a shortcoming, Meltzer did note the minimal presence of chains in the city, in humorous fashion.
"I couldn’t even find a Buffalo Wild Wings, which might’ve been like eating at Taco Bell in Mexico anyway," he wrote.
Many visits by national writers may seem tiresome or annoying to Buffalonians, especially because they often produce the same suggestions, such as "Try the wings at the Anchor Bar, the birthplace of the delicacy!" Credit Meltzer for a sound tourism tale that appreciates the past and trumpets the present without relying on the cliche.