Share this article

print logo
Gusto

There is no love more pure than the love of a child. Such wide-eyed adoration imprints its subjects on tender souls, malleable as 24-karat gold, before experience of the wider world alloys them with disappointment. This helps explain why you might travel the globe, sampling its elixirs and delicacies, only to find that nothing moves you quite like the beef on weck and malt…

Featured

If every museum served draft beer and a fish fry, they might be as crowded as the Parkside Meadow on Friday nights. The tavern across from the Buffalo Zoo reopened last year after being lovingly rehabilitated. Restored isn’t the right word, because in some ways it’s better than ever. Like other neighbors, Leonard Mattie and Nancy Abramo cringed at the besotted teens and s…

Featured

At first, SeaBar’s menu reads like the chef has attention deficit disorder. There’s sushi, both Japanese style and Westernized rolls with bacon and barbecue sauce. Then dishes featuring Asian flavors. Then Mexican (pork enchiladas), Italian (meatballs) and French (duck with lentils). Yet this menu anchors one of Buffalo’s best restaurants. Mike Andrzejewski opened SeaBar …

Featured

In 2013, Kim Suphankomut started offering Thai food from a truck called Thai Me Up, a regular at Larkinville’s Food Truck Tuesdays. Two years later he opened Water Lily Café, next to a Bowmansville apartment complex, where he serves best-selling dishes from the truck and an expanded Thai menu. After dinner there recently, I left thinking that if I lived in Lancaster, I wo…

Featured

In many American cities, an industrial building two miles from City Hall transformed into office space would be unremarkable. But this is Buffalo. The Larkin at Exchange building, and the Larkinville District it anchors, has brought the city more than Class A square footage. Larkinville is a testbed for the notion that a community can be reborn in blocks gone dark a genera…

Featured

The second-to-last time I ate in Akron, I rode my bicycle there for ice cream. First, I took my passbook into the Bank of Akron to withdraw a dollar, to pay for my cone. The last time I ate there was a few weeks ago. When I parked facing the gazebo in the tidy park at the center of town, I thought that with a steady snowfall, from the right angle, it could have been mistak…

Featured

A Taste of the Caribbean & Soul Food pretty much has its menu right there in the name. This restaurant, a half mile east of Lafayette Square, is run by Inez Daly, a cook who was born in Guyana but traveled around the world before taking over the building that was formerly Garris’ BBQ. The restaurant she opened in August is a humble place, but in it Daly offers dishes …

Featured

Usually I can tell a restaurant is owned by a person of Greek heritage without looking at the menu. It’s the décor, often punctuated with scenes of sun-washed Aegean seaside and ancient pillared edifices. The first time I walked into the restaurant at 2878 Delaware Ave. in Kenmore, I briefly considered whether my information was accurate. But it said Eggsperience Vasilis …

Featured

Say “The Left Bank” three times in a circle of Buffalo diners, and Yogi Berra’s ghost appears in a puff of cigar smoke. “Nobody goes there anymore. It’s too crowded.” And Berra never even tried to get in for Sunday brunch, as far as I know. The Left Bank is one of the few restaurants Buffalonians must plot weeks ahead to book. After 23 years in business, little of that is…

Featured

Most local Indian restaurants have menus that are practically curry copies. From starters like potato-stuffed samosa pastries to gulab jamun, the syrup-soaked cheese fritter dessert, I’d estimate 80 percent of the dishes are in 95 percent of them. That drives me mad as an Englishman in the midday sun. India’s blend of geography and cultures has produced a kaleidoscopicall…

Featured

Let’s say you buy a National Hockey League team, and still have lots of money left. So much you can buy a National Football League team and still take a double-rink hockey complex with garage and high-rise hotel out of petty cash. Heck, build it next to the hockey arena. It wouldn’t be complete without a big restaurant, of course, because everybody’s gotta eat – and drink…

Featured

The heavy barn doors had oxen yokes for handles. I pulled hard and walked into a room scented with hardwood smoke and an undercurrent of sizzling beef fat that wrapped around me like an old quilt. It was my first time at Scotch ’N Sirloin, but it felt like coming home. You see, I grew up in a house with woodstove heat, plank floors and reclaimed beams, and I miss it. (As …

Featured

“Underpromise and overdeliver” is an oft-repeated axiom of business success. Restaurants – businesses that buy ingredients and fix them up to sell at a profit – are no exception. It may be even more important for new restaurants, places about which customers know nothing but the name. So even before it opened its doors, Elite Fine Dining faced a considerable challenge. T…

Featured

Home Taste is the most far-flung star in the constellation of new Chinese restaurants arrayed around the University at Buffalo’s Amherst campus. Its generic Kenmore storefront offers no clue to its unique character. Home Taste is the only Chinese restaurant in town with a broad menu entirely devoid of Americanized Chinese. There is no fried rice or lo mein, no appearances …

Amherst

Buffalo had lots of German restaurants a generation ago, but today there is no kraut to be had in Kaisertown. Ulrich’s 1868 Tavern is the last German restaurant in city limits, which means Amherst now has more German restaurants than Buffalo. Lucky for me, as a hankering for spaetzle, schnitzel and potato pancakes drew me up Niagara Falls Boulevard to Black Forest Adler. …