Share this article

print logo

Michael Farrell

Buffalo News contributor Michael Farrell is a freelance writer, novelist, and graduate of St. Bonaventure University.


Gusto

The most commonly accepted understanding of "the holiday season" extends from Thanksgiving until at least New Year’s Day (depending on your college football interests). It encompasses more than one month of every year and when executed to its utmost, requires all celebrants to ignore the reasons for every responsible decision they’ve made throughout the previous 11 months.…

Buffalo Magazine: Out & About

There was once a time when the lure of going to the cinema was as simple as seeing a first-run film on a giant projection screen—and hammering down a bucket of popcorn while doing so. It didn’t matter that the theater seats were uncomfortable or crammed together. It wasn’t a bother that your feet stuck to the floor via spilled Coke and confectionary products. It wasn’t …

Gusto

Whether with its production, pours or ambitious packaging, craft beer is long past the point of being considered an art form. Find the right draft and its frothy, full-bodied presence can generate more mouths agape than the most abstract work of Jasper Johns. With this noted, it makes perfect sense that Buffalo’s granddaddy of beer purveyors, Flying Bison, established i…

Gusto

You’re counting down the hours until you roll home for an elongated holiday weekend of Buffalo-related revelry. That’s exciting, and we’re all thrilled for you and the thousands of other visiting expats to flood the region with curiosity and patronage. But note: The stacked Thanksgiving homecoming you’re looking for isn’t exactly what most of us do here every weekend (a…

Buffalo Magazine: Food & Drink

The late British poet Edith Sitwell once penned, “Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” The imagery this prose elicits is simply idyllic—and on the right winter day, this is the scenery of a December date in the Village of East Aurora. Full of illuminated sh…

Gusto

The modern coffee joint — whether chains like Starbucks or Spot, or independent neighborhood addresses — often comes with certain expectations from its clientele. Caffeinated drinks, both basic and elaborate. Comfortable seating and free Wi-Fi; breakfast and lunch dishes to satiate those cranking through drafts of term papers; and acoustic indie rock to complement your …

Buffalo Magazine: Food & Drink

Are Buffalo’s summers beautiful? Of course they are. The season’s usually so idyllic that it still stands as generations’ justification for braving the region’s sometimes calamitous winters—and that’s no small bargain. But within the thrill of the summer months, it can be easy to forget that, when weather and football results break the right way, the region’s fall can s…

Gusto

It’s easy to get sad about the departure of Buffalo’s summer. The short sleeves. The patio drinks. The daily schedule of outdoor concerts, free exercise classes and gentle morning breezes, the kind that caress like only a thankfully calm Great Lakes gust can. It’s a shame to see it all go away for the year, but it would be much harder to say goodbye if not for one un…

Gusto

Because of its spot on the calendar, this year’s Borderland Music + Arts Festival — set for Sept. 21 and 22 in East Aurora’s bucolic Knox Farm State Park — can bill itself in a handful of ways. It’s a goodbye to summer, occurring on the season’s last two official days. It’s a welcome to fall, happening on the doorstep of the region’s arguably most beautiful season. And …

Gusto

Every traveling Buffalonian has encountered The Annoying Chicken Wing Discussion. It’s an exchange that includes one well-meaning stranger asking if wings in Buffalo are really that good (usually right after insulting the city’s weather, industrial economy and/or football history), and requires one Buffalo native to answer in the affirmative — and then explain why. Answ…

Gusto

For many in Western New York, biking is a warm-whether activity, something you do to enjoy summer vibes whether pedaling to work or strapping on your Bern helmet for a casual weekend cruise along the waterfront. But for a region that has made long-overdue improvements to its implementation of biking infrastructure and support of cycling culture over the past 10 years, l…

Gusto

It’s already started, hasn’t it? The sadness. The longing and feeling of loss. The irrational panic of it all slipping away, yet it hasn’t even happened yet. Dramatic? Yes — but in Buffalo and across Western New York, the end of summer can feel like this. After a few months of pristine climate and a local landscape pulsating with ambitious activity, the season transi…

Gusto

We love our beer – illustrated by the fact we turned historic grain silos into a six-pack of Labatt looming over Buffalo RiverWorks. Our passion for beer and the talent and vision of local brewers and business owners have organically created a Buffalo brewery district. These 11 breweries – with a 12th soon to open – are within 1.8 miles of each other in three distinct c…

Gusto

Buffalo has had (and still has) its share of signature festivals, whether Kerfuffle, Edgefest and the forthcoming Borderland in late September. But when determining which affair best exemplifies Buffalo and its diversified music sensibilities, one could make the case that none have cradled the city’s evolving ethos as well as Cobblestone Live. Set for its third sessi…

Gusto

Since Cleveland disc jockey Alan Freed coined the phrase “rock 'n’ roll” in 1951, decades of performers have become legends under the genre banner. And whether with their sound, specific songs or onstage theatrics, some of these icons have made an indelible impression on the generations of musicians. With this noted, it is understandable that some bands intentionally or…