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Liberty Hound opens Sat.; Buffalo waterfront restaurant to celebrate seafood

Liberty Hound plans to fire up the kitchen on Friday for an open house, to hand out samples from its menu, and welcome paying customers on Saturday.

That's the word from co-owner Jason Davidson, who's partnered with Mike Schatzel (Cole's, Blue Monk) in the much-anticipated restaurant inside the museum at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park.

Chef J.T. Nicholson's menu celebrates seafood from across the United States, from a Maine-style lobster roll to a grilled fish taco that wouldn't be out of place on a San Diego beach. There's a Vietnamese-style banh mi sandwich stuffed with crispy fried calamari, a kettle of clams, mussels, shrimp, corn and more cooked in crab boil; and sauteed littleneck clams with chorizo, garlic, and butter.

"We're trying to celebrate the idea of the harbor, embrace the idea of waterfront by doing fish and fresh seafood," said Nicholson, who has cooked at Abacus and the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Dallas, and Summer Winter in Burlington, Mass.

"This isn't just a burger joint," Nicholson said. "It's a place where you can come in for a sandwich or an entree using fresh seafood from Boston, using more flavors than the classic New England, like ideas from Texas and Southeast Asia."

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