There might not be a more common American foodstuff than the french fry — which is why uncommon fries are a draw of their own.
Frozen fries shaken out of a bag into a deep-fryer can be good. But the greatest fries of all are made from fresh potatoes, carefully crafted for the perfect crisp-tender bite.
These are destination fries, worth the trip by themselves.
Fries and dips from Frank Gourmet Hot Dogs, 707 Kenmore Ave., Tonawanda, and food truck on location via findfranknow.com.
The hot dog truck that's recently added a brick-and-mortar restaurant in Tonawanda makes fries that might make you eat the hot dog last. The mayonnaise-based dips come in salt and vinegar, kane, and spicy sriracha aioli.
Frank chili cheese fries are worth special consideration, topped with chunky chili and shredded cheddar, for fries that eat like a meal.
Fries with fried bologna sandwich, Colter Bay Grill, 561 Delaware Ave.
The hand-cut fries are an essential pairing with sandwiches at this renewed Buffalo tavern at Allen and Delaware - and the sweet potato fries are worth an order as well.
Fries with cheeseburger, The Black Sheep, 367 Connecticut St.
Triple-cooking the spuds brings supernatural crispiness to this humble fruit of the soil.
Fries with green chili burger at Allen Burger Venture, 175 Allen St.
Burgers are the headliners here, but the fries are a supporting cast that no great burger should be without. Read the dining review on Allen Burger Venture, from 2015.
Curly-q fries at Sullivan's Charbroil, 3590 E. Main Road, Fredonia
The curly fries at this family burger spot are cut the old-fashioned way - with a power drill assist. But their real appeal is in freshness and volume.
Fries with lobster roll, Duke's Bohemian Grove Bar, 253 Allen St.
Allen Street's reputation as Buffalo's french fry epicenter is strengthened by these better-than-bar fries. The lobster roll isn't always there, but the fries never waver.
Chili cheese fries, Juicy Burger Bar, 1 Buffalo St., Hamburg (pictured at top)
Whether you go for the meaty chili cheese fries or completely animal-free vegan poutine, Juicy's way with fries will bring you back.
Parmesan truffle fries, Moor Pat, 78 E. Spring St., East Amherst
The full-flavored beers at Moor Pat team up with the one-two punch of parmesan cheese and truffle oil for an umami-bomb bar snack.
Fries with mussels, Billy Club, 228 Allen St.
Fries are a side to some of the eclectic dinner offerings, like mussels with an Indonesian-inflected tomato-coconut sambal with cilantro. But they're also a bar snack worth waiting for.
There's a plethora of toppings to choose from, but underneath it all are excellent fries (chips?) done to Canadian poutine standards. See Smiling faces from Allen Street Poutine's eating contest for charity.