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Restaurant Notes: Churn, Angelica Tea Room, Fuze Asian, P. Moran's

Ice cream will joining the Lloyd lineup on Hertel Avenue when Churn opens next to Lloyd Taco Factory this spring.

The shop, at 1501 Hertel Ave., will aim to offer four flavors of soft-serve daily, made from grass-fed local milk. Lloyd owners Peter Cimino and Chris Dorsaneo unveiled the “secret” project in a Facebook video Monday morning.

“We’re going to be making our ice cream bases from scratch, which is really unheard of in the soft-serve industry.” said Dorsaneo. “We’ve got some really good grass-fed milk that we’ve sourced locally. We’re going to be using all sorts of creative toppings.”

The Lloyd owners introduced Ann “Panda” Tran, a former pastry chef at Aro Bar de Tapas, as a key part of their ice cream operation. Hopefully the shop will be open and serving by April 1, Cimino said.

Churn will offer cone creations, a Blizzard-like mix-in and two feature sundaes at a time, Cimino said. Vegan soft-serve is in development, he said, although it’s not clear if it will have a coconut or almond foundation.

Lloyd Taco, which also operates a fleet of four food trucks, was Buffalo’s first food truck in 2010. Dorsaneo and Cimino opened their first brick-and-mortar Lloyd Taco Factory, 1503 Hertel Ave., in 2015. A second Lloyd Taco Factory location is planned for Main Street Williamsville this summer.

The announcement #LeBron

Posted by Lloyd Taco Trucks on Monday, January 16, 2017


Tea room as bar: Angelica Tea Room aims to broaden Buffalo’s bar horizons when it opens in the former Club Diablo space on Washington Street.

It’s going to sell more alcohol than tea, but its décor and ambiance will echo European tea rooms, said Harry Zemsky. The former goth bar, 517 Washington St., is being transformed with lighter colors, “lots of upholsteries, interesting textures, and chandeliers,” said Zemsky. The goal is a room that’s “funky, fun, comfortable.”

Zemsky, who runs Hydraulic Hearth, and Jon Karel of Buffalo Proper are the owners. Their plan is to combine some of the tea rooms’ continental elegance with now-classic cocktails dreamed up in European parlors by American master mixologists driven abroad by Prohibition.

There will also be a menu of loose-leaf teas, and a food menu inspired by European standards. “Russian tea rooms have smoked fish and caviar, or English with cucumber sandwiches, or French with macarons or croque monsieurs,” Zemsky said.

The menu hasn’t been finalized. The partners hope to open in February, Zemsky said.

“If I was traveling in Buffalo or somewhere else,” he said, “this is something I would like to find that’s a little different.”

[Related: Last week's Notes, featuring Roaming Bison Tavern, Epicurus II]


New Amherst Asian: A new Asian fusion restaurant is opening off Millersport Highway just south of the University at Buffalo’s Amherst campus.

Fuze Asian Grille will serve customers in the first-floor space at 1424 Millersport Highway that was previously Billy’s, and Jack’s Place before that.

Owners Tony An and Let Kyaw already operate Cozy Thai, a well-regarded Hamburg restaurant. At their Amherst operation, the partners will expand the menu from Thai cuisine to add dishes from Burmese and Japanese cultures, Kyaw said. The planned opening is Jan. 24.

A draft menu shows one of the most extensive Asian menus in the Northtowns. Appetizers include Burmese paratha, a layered flatbread served with chicken-potato curry ($6), Thai grilled chicken satay ($7) and Japanese shrimp tempura ($7).

Artwork inside the new Fuze Asian on Millersport Highway in Amherst. (via Fuze)

Besides the usual Thai curries, stir-fries and noodle dishes, the menu includes Burmese coconut chicken noodle soup ($9), Burmese pork belly and tea-leaf rice ($13), and chicken or beef in Thai peanut sauce ($12).

The 180-seat space, formerly a sports pub, has been extensively renovated. Its new interior will feature a sushi bar, and an Asian salad bar, he said. That’s not an all-you-can-eat buffet, but an open kitchen where diners can see their Thai, Burmese and Japanese salads and rice bowls assembles to order.

The restaurant will offer sake, beer, wine and liquor, Kyaw said, though the emphasis will be on food.


P. Moran’s closed: P. Moran’s, the British-inspired Parkside neighborhood  pub, has closed.

The restaurant at 301 Parkside Ave., across the street from the Buffalo Zoo, served its last shepherd’s pie and Guinness the night of Jan. 12. Owner Prish Moran said she decided to close after a business disagreement with the landlord.

The spot opened seven years ago as a Sweet_ness 7, a coffee shop-plus-crepes operation similar to Moran’s original Sweet_ness 7 location, at 220 Grant St. A year ago, Moran changed it to P. Moran’s, a pub inspired by the small local places of Ireland and the United Kingdom.

Prish Moran has closed P. Moran's on Parkside Avenue, and will add evening hours at Sweet_ness 7 on Grant Street. (Buffalo News file photo)

The Grant Street Sweet_ness location remains open, and Moran said she would refocus her efforts there. The Parkside staff will start working there, and the café will begin offering evening hours, which customers have been requesting, Moran said. She will listen to proposals from other operators who might like to sublet the Parkside space, she said.

“I’m at peace with it,” Moran said. “The only thing I’m sad about is that the neighborhood loses.”


New Italian food truck: After 17 years of jobs that involved selling other people’s food, Maria Frayne went into business for herself last week.

Frayne started selling sandwiches, drinks and dessert from Maria’s Bene Cibo, her new food truck, in a Cheektowaga parking lot.

Frayne said she spent 11 years working for Tim Hortons and six years managing a Tops prepared foods section. “I’ve got about 17 years in,” she said. “I wanted to work hard for myself.”

Maria's Bene Cibo truck has started selling panini and cannoli in Cheektowaga. (Photo: Maria's Bene Cibo)

The truck’s menu has an Italian bent, with grilled panini sandwiches and cannoli ($2) for dessert. Jimmy’s Spicy Muffuletta, with hot ham, salami, more ham, provolone, olive relish, basil pesto and sliced jalapenos, is $7.

Hungry people can presently find Frayne’s work Thursday through Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at 3501 Harlem Road, Cheektowaga, The Shirt Guy’s parking lot, across the street from Mt. Calvary Cemetery. Call 322-7314 to order, or for more information.

Closed: Eddie’s Chophouse, the Chinese barbecue specialist at 3171 Main St., has closed.

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