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OUT TO EAT / Great dishes, drinks and people

Barbecue up some pizza

The inventive types at Pizza Junction (1269 Erie Ave., North Tonawanda) aim to come up with a new pizza sensation every year for Tonawanda's Pizza Fest. "If we win with it, it gets added to our menu," said General Manager Ryan Fleckenstein.

A few years ago, Pulled Pork Pizza took honors at the contest, and it's been on the menu ever since.

"People did ask for it, but it wasn't that popular an item," Fleckenstein said. Then Guy Fieri showcased it during his visit to the restaurant on the Food Network's "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives," and it really took off.

"We cook bone-in pork shoulder in homemade barbecue sauce, for about eight to 10 hours, 'til you can pull the bone out clean," Fleckenstein said. The meat is shredded and tossed in the sauce, and more sauce from the pan is used to line a pizza crust.

"We put a nice heaping portion of the pork on the crust, and top it with mozzarella cheese," he said. When it's done, the large version, which will set you back $22.60, weighs about six pounds.

Pizza Junction isn't going to become a barbecue joint any time soon, but the demand for barbecue pizza doesn't seem to be waning, said Fleckenstein. "We're actually cooking pork butts a couple times a week," he said.

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A tasty pairing

Daniels Restaurant (174 Buffalo St., Hamburg) is offering a wine pairing dinner for Sunday and June 27.

Here's the menu: Duck rillettes (Chandon Sparkling Rose); soft shell crab with garlic, lemon, caper and chive butter (San Telmo Torrontes 2009); goat cheese ravioli with caponata (Cape Mentelle Sauvignon Blanc 2008); rhubarb sorbet intermezzo; grilled yellow fin tuna with pickled ramps and creme fraiche (Chalone Monterey Pinot Noir 2008); grilled pork tenderloin with white beans, haricot vert and chorizo, medjool date vinaigrette (Capezzana Barco Reale 2006); and strawberry ice cream with almond tuiles (Barton & Guestier Vouvray 2008).

Seatings are at 5 p.m. Meals are $90, not including tax and tip. Call 648-6554 for reservations.

-- Andrew Z. Galarneau

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Lunch is Delish

Debbie Clarke of Delish (812 Elmwood Ave.) has started serving lunch at her pastry shop/cooking school, with a menu that offers noodle bowls, sandwiches, salads and pastries. The hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and the menu changes weekly. For more information on what's coming out of the kitchen that day, log onto www.delishelmwood.com and click on Chop Chop.

-- Janice Okun

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