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In recent years, Lockport-area eaters looking for a finer-than-diner meal have had three main choices: red sauce Italian, traditional American steakhouse or drive to Buffalo. ¶ That changed in November when Michael Zambito opened Mericana on Main Street. Having whetted local tastes for finer than usual food at Zambistro in Medina, which he opened in 2006, chef-owner Zamb…

Food and Drink

When you head into most barbecue joints, you have a pretty clear idea of what to expect. The barbecue might be Texas-style brisket, Carolina chopped pork, or Memphis-style ribs, but at least it will be traditional American cuisine.At Smoke on the Water (77 Young St., Tonawanda), chef-owner Kevin Richert is more interested in tastiness than tradition. That’s why he’s been s…

Food and Drink

One of the area’s best-kept barbecue secrets has existed near my home since 2002, but I only recently discovered Suzy-Q’s Bar-B-Que Shack in the Town of Tonawanda. One taste and I knew that I would no longer roam for authentic smoked Southern cuisine. The tiny eatery lives up to its slogan, “A little PIT of heaven.”My fiancé, Patrick, and I ventured in on a recent Saturday…

Food and Drink

In recent years, Lockport-area eaters looking for a finer-than-diner meal have had three main choices: red sauce Italian, traditional American steakhouse or drive to Buffalo. ¶ That changed in November when Michael Zambito opened Mericana on Main Street. Having whetted local tastes for finer than usual food at Zambistro in Medina, which he opened in 2006, chef-owner Zamb…

Food and Drink

One of the area’s best-kept barbecue secrets has existed near my home since 2002, but I only recently discovered Suzy-Q’s Bar-B-Que Shack in the Town of Tonawanda. One taste and I knew that I would no longer roam for authentic smoked Southern cuisine. The tiny eatery lives up to its slogan, “A little PIT of heaven.”My fiancé, Patrick, and I ventured in on a recent Saturday…

Food and Drink

When you head into most barbecue joints, you have a pretty clear idea of what to expect. The barbecue might be Texas-style brisket, Carolina chopped pork, or Memphis-style ribs, but at least it will be traditional American cuisine.At Smoke on the Water (77 Young St., Tonawanda), chef-owner Kevin Richert is more interested in tastiness than tradition. That’s why he’s been s…

Allen Street Hardware (Jan. 2) 245 Allen St. (882-8843, www.allenstreethardware.com). Nearly 10 years along, bar-cafe remains a neighborhood favorite.Brioso by Butterwood (Dec. 26, 2013) 5195 Main St., Amherst (828-8370, www.briosowny.com). Flavors of Central, South America raise the bar on hotel dining. 7 platesTeton Kitchen (Dec. 19) 415 Dick Road, Depew (393-3720, www.t…

It’s a new year and a good time to start living a healthier lifestyle.Health experts, food bloggers and chefs say that with an abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts, getting on the right track should be a little easier.Also helping people make better food choices is a new book by celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis. Her book, “Giada’s Feel Good Food: My Healthy Rec…

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SWOOPE, Va. – Hog heaven, it turns out, is a place on Earth, a sun-dappled mountainside in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia where, one day this fall, a herd of Gloucestershire Old Spots, Hampshires, Yorkshires and Durocs contentedly gorged their way toward 300 pounds.Some vacuumed the underbrush with their snouts, noisily ingesting grasses and herbs, acorns and persimmons…

I am one of those pathetic souls you might have heard about on the news, or read about on national websites: the Popeyes pilgrims of Buffalo. The other night I waited for 47 minutes in an idling minivan for takeout fried chicken.Then, when it was finally sitting in my lap, all hot and steamy with its perfume tickling my nose, I couldn’t even dig in. We had a 20-minute driv…

New Year’s resolutions tend to be big, impressive promises that we adhere to for short periods of time – that blissful stretch of January when we are starving ourselves, exercising daily and reading Proust. But, and you know this, rather than making extreme changes that last for days or weeks, we are better off with tiny ones lasting more or less forever.Mostly, though, wh…

By all outward appearances, the ugliness of the Internet descended to terrible new depths in 2013.In Western New York, one of the nastiest social media disputes of the year erupted in early December, when blogger Jodi Lynn Maracle posted a thoughtful missive on her blog about racist and sexist issues swirling around a new West Side restaurant. After four days of vitriol an…

Americans are continuing our love affair with wine as 2014 arrives, but we may love beer and spirits even more. Here’s what’s trending in drinks:•  We love wine: We drank more last year for the 19th year in a row – up 2 percent to 360 million 12-bottle cases, according to wine consultants Gomberg, Fredrikson & Associates.•  We love American wine: California makes 58 percen…

By all outward appearances, the ugliness of the Internet descended to terrible new depths in 2013.In Western New York, one of the nastiest social media disputes of the year erupted in early December, when blogger Jodi Lynn Maracle posted a thoughtful missive on her blog about racist and sexist issues swirling around a new West Side restaurant. After four days of vitriol an…

Buffalo

A decade ago, west of Elmwood, Allen was a drinking street with a restaurant problem. ¶ The younger crowds drawn to the crooked end of Allen for live music and shot specials could power down a cheesesteak on the corner, if they weren’t picky. But there was nothing for their parents to eat. ¶ That changed when Allen Street Hardware was opened by preservationist and musi…