Nye Park Tavern, under new ownership since January, is changing its menu and adding televisions for more of a sports bar atmosphere.
The tavern, 1672 Elmwood Ave., was Papa Jake's before being extensively renovated by restaurateur Mark Hutchinson and reopened in March 2016. Joseph Panaro and partner Patrick Ogiony bought the place in January and took over in March, Panaro said.
With the food menu, "we kept a lot the same, but added chicken piccata, chicken marsala," he said. There's a weekly specials menu where Tuesday is shrimp scampi and Sunday is ravioli Bolognese.
The restaurant currently has three televisions, but Panaro will be adding five more to the room to make it more suitable for game-watching. Live music two or three nights a month is also on the schedule.
Panaro managed restaurants in Las Vegas before moving to Buffalo in 2010. He was formerly the bar manager at Rocco's Wood Fired Pizza on Transit Road.
Now he's the familiar face at Nye Park, he said, an anchor for regular customers. "It's my first restaurant that I've owned," he said, "and it's something that I'm proud of."
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