Once again for Veterans Day, many area restaurants and bars will honor veterans with a variety of specials and discounts. Some will honor veterans on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, while other deals are for Nov. 12. Be sure to bring valid Military ID and call ahead to make sure the establishment is participating. In most cases beverages, tax and gratuity are not included. If possible, make a reservation.
Here's a rundown:
American Grille (7901 Seneca St., East Aurora) invites active and retired military to stop in for a free burger and fries on Nov. 11. Chef/owner Patrick Staerker said his offer of a free burger and fries is a small way to thank those who have served in the military. The Staerker family has a long history of military service.
Owned by two Air Force veterans, the Craft Coffee House at 6535 Campbell Blvd., Suite A in Pendleton is offering a free drip coffee now through Nov. 11.
For those with a sweet tooth, Anderson’s Custard will also participate on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, with a free handmade ice cream or frozen custard cone for vets with valid ID. Anderson's has six locations throughout the area.
Also serving dessert is Cracker Barrel (6343 Transit Road), which treats vets to a complimentary piece of Double Chocolate Fudge Coca-Cola cake, dine-in only. Cracker Barrel also is running a special promotion giving 20 percent of the sales price (in store or online) of select items of Lodge cast iron cookware to Operation Homefront.
Also included in the donation promotion, through in-store sales only, are the American Jelly Belly mix, camo Jelly Belly mix, pink camo Jelly Belly, and Big Little Fudge Camo Fudge Bites.
Applebee’s will donate free meals to vets on Nov. 11. It’s the 11th year the restaurant has served veterans and active duty military, who can choose from eight entrees. Area locations include Buffalo, Cheektowaga, West Seneca, Lancaster, Amherst, Hamburg, Williamsville, Niagara Falls and Lockport.
Bar Louie at the Walden Galleria will serve a free flatbread or burger, up to $15 value, on Nov. 11.
Bob Evans in Amherst and Niagara Falls will serve active-duty military a free meal on Nov. 11. Choose from six menu favorites.
The Grapevine Restaurant, (2545 Niagara Falls Blvd., Amherst) plans a free brunch buffet for vets from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. or a free dinner from a special menu from 2 p.m. on. Military families receive 10 percent off the month of November.
LongHorn Steakhouse offers veterans a free appetizer or dessert with their purchase on Nov. 11, as well as 10 percent off for the entire table. Area locations are in Cheektowaga, Orchard Park and Niagara Falls.
Old Country Buffet (4401 Transit Road) honors vets throughout the year by hosting Military Mondays (every Monday) for active duty, reserve members, vets and their families with special pricing on Mondays: $6.29 lunch, $9.29 dinner and $1.99 kids’ meals. The rest of the week throughout the year, vets receive a 15 percent discount.
Olive Garden will serve a free meal to all active-duty veterans on Nov. 11 from a limited menu. The offer is for dine-in only.
Once again, Red Robin serves vets a free Red’s Tavern Double Burger and free bottomless steak fries on Nov. 11. Red Robin has locations in Orchard Park and Amherst.
Seneca Niagara Casino will offer its Thunder Falls Buffet free to veterans on Nov. 11.
Texas Roadhouse will serve a free lunch to veterans from a special Veterans Day menu on Nov. 11. Choose from 10 lunches. Area locations include Cheektowaga and Tonawanda.
TGI Fridays tells us their Veterans Day promotion is nationwide, but to check with your local restaurant to be sure they participate. On Nov. 11 and Nov. 12, vets receive a free entrée up to $12 all day. Military members who dine with TGI Fridays on these days will get a special code printed at the bottom of their bill.
Save the bill with the code to use anytime from Nov. 13 through Nov. 30 to order a free, personal-sized appetizer with any online or takeout purchase of $20 or more. TGI Fridays has locations in downtown Buffalo, Cheektowaga, Amherst, Hamburg/Blasdell and Niagara Falls.
Tully's Good Times will provide veterans with a free tenders dinner, with valid ID, dine in only, on Nov. 11. Participating locations include Amherst, Clarence, Cheektowaga, Batavia and Rochester.
On Nov. 11, World of Beer at the Walden Galleria will offer veterans $5 off their check. Offer is not valid with any other offers or discounts, one check, per person, one time only.
Denny’s will offer its free build-your-own Grand Slam from 5 a.m. to noon Nov. 12 for veterans and military personnel. Includes active, non-active or retired. Dine-in only. Denny’s has several area locations including Buffalo, West Seneca, Orchard Park, Amherst, Hamburg, Depew, Cheektowaga, Niagara Falls and Lockport. Other locations are in Corfu, Batavia and Fredonia.
Texas de Brazil at the Walden Galleria will offer up to two vets at one table a free dinner on Nov. 12, and up to six additional guests receive 20 percent off the total bill.
At IHOP, vets can enjoy free Red, White and Blue Pancakes on Nov. 12. IHOP has locations in Cheektowaga and Amherst.
On Nov. 11, Wegmans is honoring veterans with a free 12-ounce brewed coffee. Then, from 8 to 11 a.m. Nov. 12, Wegmans will host a complimentary hot breakfast bar with coffee, juice and fresh fruit.
Ilio DiPaolo's Restaurant (3785 South Park Ave., Blasdell) will host a veterans "Veloce Lunch Buffet" on Tuesday, Nov. 13 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., for active and non-active veterans. Dine in only, call 825-3675 for a reservation.
Throughout the year, veterans with a “Thank A Vet” card can visit local businesses to receive discounts as thanks for their service, including local restaurants. In most cases the discount applies only to retired and active vets, and food only.
The Thank a Vet program is through the Erie County Clerk’s office, which issues a complimentary ID card that is certified by the Erie County Clerk’s office. For details, visit www2.erie.gov or call 858-4737.