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A flurry of activity in the Western New York restaurant scene closed out the final months of 2018, as new restaurants and bars opened from Alden to Olcott. Here's a quick list of the new businesses, including a Southtowns meadery and a new neighborhood bar-restaurant trumpeting trash plates and poutine. The Clinton Lounge Where: 1895 Clinton St. When: Opened Nov. 1…

Food and Drink

Powered by a second round of loans from its customers, Five Points Bakery has opened the second story of its West Side establishment, expanded its hours, and its offerings. The whole-grain bakery at 44 Brayton St., run by Melissa and Kevin Gardner, is the rare business funded by its customers. After raising $150,000 in loans from loyalists, projects including the openin…

Food and Drink

The first major arena show of 2019 in Buffalo crashes an otherwise quiet event slate that includes the grand-opening party for a Hertel Avenue food hall, an appreciation for David Bowie's catalog and the dawn of a monthlong residency for a well-known Buffalo funk band. Panic! at the Disco, 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 10 at KeyBank Center. Ticket prices range from $36.25 to $6…

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Opening a bar is a decision that, regardless of vocational training, management acumen or basic rationality, people routinely discuss as a viable business opportunity. Is this because it’s an easy gig? No. It’s because the idealistic expectation of the bar, tavern or pub is the monetization of hangout space, crafted for customers who will patronize a place as their pers…

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Prime rib is back in the Town of Boston after a group of former employees reopened the Boston Hotel. Owner Kathleen Mrugala said a group of ex-workers have returned to bring back the Boston Hotel menu of the 1990s. The restaurant, at 9373 Boston State Road, had been closed since June before reopening Nov. 15. “Things are going great,” Mrugala said. “The town is rally…

Food and Drink

East Aurora’s oldest restaurant is going back to its old name, and diversifying its menu for a broader crowd of today’s customers. Molly Flynn is the new owner of The Globe, 711 E. Main St., formerly known as Tony Rome’s Globe Hotel. The restaurant industry lifer is taking over from Rocco and Tara Sorrentino, who will stick around for six months to support a smooth tran…

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A Spot Coffee Express Cafe is now open in the new West Seneca Community Center & Library (1300 Union Road, West Seneca). The cafe serves the usual Spot beverages (coffee, tea, espresso and blender drinks) along with multiple food options from baked goods to desserts, breakfast and lunch and lighter fare. The cafe is open daily from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and is accessible…

Food and Drink

After abruptly closing its doors in October last year, Fry Baby Donuts is abruptly reopening. Fry Baby, Buffalo's first vegan doughnut shop, held its "grand re-opening" Thursday morning, serving its first fresh doughnuts in three months. In October, owner Ann Hogan said she was not sure she would reopen, at that address or elsewhere. But an Instagram post appeared su…

Food and Drink

Whenever I plan a trip to a new city, I scour locals' Instagrams and blogs. How else am I going to know which cafés have the most Instagrammable avocado toast? I find someone whose general tastes mirror mine and discover where they eat their pepper-flaked, olive-oil-drizzled, avocado toast, just the way I like it. On the curated feeds of local bloggers and Instagrammers…

Art

Does the first week of January represent the saddest week of Buffalo's year? The excitement of the holidays has abruptly ended, and the reality of at least four months of gloomy weather can dampen even the brightest of spirits. A solid event slate - especially for one of the typically slowest weeks of the year - can cure some of these Buffalo blues, although another Sab…

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Five years ago, Adam Goetz brought forth on Hertel Avenue a dining room dedicated to the proposition that Western New York’s vegetables, fruit and meat were the equal of any on earth. At a time when a Buffalo chef can summon the wealth of the planet via a plane, Goetz bet the success of Craving on ingredients delivered by pickup truck. He learned to mesh farmers’ produc…

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Pastor Al Robinson and his wife, Vivian, look around the Lovejoy District and see hope, a word seldom used to describe the East Side of Buffalo. This hope stems from La Verdad Cafe, the Robinsons' new barbecue enterprise, inside the former "crack house" they took over at 1132 E. Lovejoy St. in early September. The restaurant is warm and welcoming, and that's intentional…

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The barbecue at La Verdad Cafe, the new smoked meat enclave at 1132 E. Lovejoy St., extends far beyond its popular Stretch Mark brisket sandwich, even if that choice steals the thunder because of its size and quality. Read the story behind the restaurant opened by pastors Al and Vivian Robinson and how it shows promise in helping to change a neighborhood with a rough re…

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Ru's Pierogi and Community Beer Works will be featured on the Cooking Channel at 9 p.m. Jan. 1, during the third episode of the fifth season of “Burgers Brews & Que with Michael Symon.” The highlighted dishes are Ru's chicken wing pierogi, and apple pierogi, paired with CBW's The Whale, a brown ale. Filming occurred earlier this year. The episode description f…

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Mia Hwang, owner of MoMo's Mongolian Grill since 2016 and Shogun, its predecessor at 7590 Transit Road, Amherst, for more than 25 years, has closed her restaurant. Shogun was long known for the showmanship, family-friendly nature and variety of its hibachi dinners, before a 2016 concept change involved both a new name and a menu geared more toward Mongolian barbecue - r…