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Burgers and poutine share the spotlight at Mighty Moe’s

Mighty Moe’s was brave to open up a hamburger stand in the former Vasili’s on Hertel in the dead of winter (January 2015). We are happy they did.

We also were happy to find ample parking on a Sunday at dinnertime, although concerned that the place was empty. But it was the final day of the Greek Festival. A worker noted that Sundays usually are Moe’s busiest days. So we lucked out.

The majority of seating at Mighty Moe’s is outdoors. A few bar-height tables are indoors.

The menu is huge, and includes breakfast sandwiches ($3.39), hot and cold subs ($4.99-$8.49), wings ($9.99 for 10), sandwiches and wraps ($4.99-$6.59), salads ($6.59-$8.99), tacos ($3.49-$4.99) and hoagies ($5.99-$8.99). Dinners top out at $9.99, with the usual suspects: fried chicken, chicken fingers, popcorn shrimp and souvlakis (beef, chicken, gyro). All come with fries.

While many summer joints focus on hot dogs, Moe’s showcases burgers and poutine. (If you must, dogs are $2.99/$3.99 chili.)

The Mighty Moe’s Signature Burger comes single ($5.99), double ($6.99) or triple ($7.99). The kid at the window tried to talk Sig Other into the triple “for only a dollar more,” but when the double showed up, SigO was glad for restraint. My Hawaiian Burger (a single) also was big.

Both came on lovely toasted sesame buns in cute paper-lined baskets. Patties aren’t super thick, but they make up for this in diameter. The Signature included very fresh lettuce, sliced tomato, melted American cheese, thin-sliced red onion and Moe’s secret sauce. Biting into his juicy burger, Sig O reported that the sauce looked like, but was better than, Big Mac’s special sauce.

My Hawaiian, topped with canned pineapple rings, melted mozzarella, thin red onion and super crisp bacon, oozed dark barbecue sauce. It was absolutely delicious.

Among other specialty burgers, we liked the sound of the Pastrami Burger ($6.99) and Moe’s Shoestring ($6.79), topped with special sauce and fries.

About the fries. In honor of the Greek Fest we ate Chicken Souvlaki Poutine ($7.99). The festival should consider adding it to its repertoire.

Oh, the joy of super crisp and hot fries, topped with delicious grilled, marinated chicken chunks, black olives and salty feta cheese. Warm gravy and Greek dressing on the side allowed us to soak when ready.

Best described as a dish one keeps shoveling in despite being full, it was enough for a meal. We plan to return for others: Original ($5.99), Philly Cheese ($6.99), Steak Souvlaki ($8.99), Bacon Cheeseburger, Buffalo Chicken Finger (each $7.99).

Two minor hiccups. Outdoor napkins are paper towels from an automatic dispenser. A little stiff to soak up juicy burgers, but we managed.

The ice cream situation is sketchy. Conflicting flavors of Perry’s were listed outdoors versus in. Moe’s was out of many. Different shakes are available, but many were crossed out on a chalkboard.

Two small cones cost $6.29. When they arrived the “hard” ice cream was super soft and we only got one mushy scoop in our cone. We resorted to a bowl. A sign said, “blizzards coming,” but Moe’s should straighten out a simple cone first.

Regardless, don’t be deterred. Bring your own Wet Ones, and hope the ice cream situation is resolved. Good food makes up for the bumps of Moe’s first summer.

Mighty Moe’s

Where: 1900 Hertel Ave. (835-6637, mightymoesbuffalo.com, Facebook)

Hours: Daily 10 a.m.-9 p.m.

Accessible: Yes

Close: Buffalo Zoo is a mile away.

Extra: Delivery, takeout and online ordering. High chairs. Credit cards accepted. Canine Cupcakes available for your pooch.

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