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Martinis worthy of spotlight at D-Tour Martini Bar

We apologize, but we cannot take anymore beer, craft or otherwise. Bypass the breweries (including dudes with beards in flannel shirts) and set the GPS for the D-Tour Martini Bar & Kitchen on Chippewa Street.

It's easy to spot. Propane heaters burn under a sleek awning. Like beacons they welcome those of a certain age with, "Hey, we know you might remember this place as the Atomic, Liars and Indulge, but things are different now."

Like us (at least we like to think of ourselves this way), the location has matured from a party bar into a sophisticated establishment that is hip yet comfortable.

D-Tour opened a year ago very subtly on New Year's Eve. Owner Jesse Kozak, who also owns the nearby 67 West, revamped the long narrow space. Exposed brick mixed with interesting wallpapers give walls texture and interest. While there is an industrial feel, the space is warm and inviting.

Hanging out at D-Tour Martini Bar are, from left, Lois Young, Aneesa Abdulla and Kylie Yager, of Buffalo. (Sharon Cantillon/Buffalo News)

A bar runs down the right of the long space. Tables and chairs are strategically placed in front and along the left wall, including interesting banquette seating near an open kitchen tucked away in the back.

Clear plastic bar seats are comfy and chic. Hang out and chat, because the music is not deafening.

As the name notes, martinis highlight the drink menu - ten to be exact, at $10 each. Most are named for well-known Buffalo streets. The Elm Street mixes rye whiskey, dry vermouth, lemon, grenadine and orange bitters. The Exchange Street combines Stoli vanilla vodka with Lockhouse coffee liqueur and Bailey's Irish Cream. The original Dirty DTour is a dirty martini of vodka, vermouth and olive brine (a blue cheese stuffed olive on request). Savory, sweet-tart and dessert-esque, D-Tour's menu changes occasionally to reflect the season and customers' tastes.

Not into martinis? Experienced bartenders can whip up any cocktail, just ask.

Glassware sets D-Tour apart. Don't expect a chintzy glass that sloshes all over. Oh no, D-Tour uses a big boy martini glass, the kind fingers barely wrap around. They are deliciously wicked.

In fact, glassware makes the drinks extra special. On the rocks cocktails come in a contemporary tapered glass. White wine gets stemmed glasses, red wine the darling chubby stemless. Wines are $10 a glass.

Draft beer drinkers have two choices: Stella Artois and a Southern Tier Brewing IPA. Bottles of standards (Coors Light, Sam Adams, Labatt, etc.), locals (Flying Bison, Ellicott Brewing), plus a couple of ciders round out the menu. Beer drinkers get a spiffy chilled pilsner.

Food is matched for cocktailing. A sharp menu features small plates like clams casino ($11), hummus ($8) and bison meatballs ($12) in a marinara with a port reduction and crispy onions. The dish won the 2018 Meatball Street Brawl. Salads include a Cajun chicken with roasted beets and oranges ($11). The Melt Bar portion of the menu has burgers ($11 and up) and sesame panko crusted chicken sandwich ($9). Mains range from $15 for chicken and waffles to steak frites at $19.

Five televisions entertain sports fans, including Sabres games. D-Tour also is a short walk to Shea's. It's the best of both worlds, and thankfully not the party world we left behind.

D-Tour Martini Bar & Kitchen

Where: 49 W. Chippewa St.

Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, 11:30 a.m. to midnight Wednesday and Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Closed Sunday.

Happy Hour: 4 to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. Cocktail Hour is 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday with $5 martinis, $5 wine, $3 bottled beer and $5 flatbreads.

Parking: Street or pay lots around Chippewa Street.

Posh Potties: Super nice ladies room. We assume the fellas is same.


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