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Food and Drink

All Rich Taczkowski wanted was a restaurant where he could enjoy a conversation, as well as a meal. As he explored restaurants in Buffalo, the downtown resident found suitable places seem in shorter supply these days. “All I want is a place where I can have a quiet conversation, have a business meeting, or read the paper,” he said. Between crowd noise, blaring music,…

Gusto

Growing up here has its blessings. The prospect of getting snowed in is a dream, not a nightmare, ever since the Blizzard of ’77 gave me two uninterrupted weeks to craft snow forts that, in memory at least, rivaled “Lord of the Rings.” A downside was a stunted relationship with seafood. Lake Erie fish were poison. Store-bought fish was expensive enough that a foul fille…

Gusto

Since opening Toutant in 2015, James Roberts has built quite a meaty reputation. People have been flocking to the Ellicott Street restaurant since, drawn by some of the best fried chicken, sausage and barbecue in Buffalo. What's more, specials like the housemade smoked bologna sandwich and Toutant's version of a Nashville hot chicken sandwich have added to Toutant's …

Gusto

Dobutsu, one of the year's most anticipated restaurants, has set its opening at 500 Seneca St. From James and Connie Roberts, the husband and wife behind Toutant, Dobutsu aims to become the city's premier seafood restaurant. After lengthy construction delays, Dobutsu, inspired by Pacific cuisine, should open May 1. Sure, there's lots of meat on the opening menu, i…

Food and Drink

Toutant would have been a hit anywhere. But when chef-owner James Roberts chose the address for the restaurant he’s been working on his entire adult life, he decided to roll dem bones at 437 Ellicott St. City officials had chalked the building off for demolition. But Rocco Termini, Roberts’ landlord, took a hard look at his proposed tenant and spent until everything was…

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The Western New York restaurant scene is unique in that its members are not just colleagues, they're a family. Much like the Buffalo population in general, the culinary crew cares about each other, and while they may compete for reviews, customers and accolades, they have each other's backs when it counts. The Iron Event is one example of that community spirit, an event t…

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Toutant, James Roberts’ downtown parlor of Southern delights, already numbers fried chicken, shrimp and grits and baked-to-order cornbread among its siren songs. This month, Roberts departed from his Louisiana bayou roots to apply his chefly skills to the native cuisine of Buffalo. The bologna sandwich he unveiled last week at his restaurant, 437 Ellicott St., profoundly …

Featured

Looking for a classic creation made by expert cocktail artists? Try Toutant, Buffalo’s newest comfort food favorite. Toutant is the brainchild of Chef James Roberts, with a cuisine inspired by low-country Southern fare and favorites from Louisiana bayou country. Bartender Jeff Yanuzzi has curated the bar to match, with a selection of both traditional standards and origin…

Buffalo

There’s a new crew cooking at Granny’s Kitchen. The diner at 899 French Road, Cheektowaga, changed hands in November. Since then, brothers Julian and Aaron Pawlak have taken over with their father, Tom Pawlak.“We thrive on fresh, homemeade meals,” Tom Pawlak said. “Stuff used to be stacked up in the freezer, and warmed up in the microwave. We don’t do that.”The Pawlaks add…

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Toutant, named for Chef James Roberts’ great-grandfather’s South Louisiana fishing and trapping camp, was his family’s sustenance and livelihood at the turn of the century. Now, at the turn of Buffalo’s culinary renaissance, Roberts is opening Toutant to bring the low country soul food that he craves to the city that will soon learn to do the same. Emphasizing fresh ingre…

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Toutant, a new restaurant aiming to deliver “modern, fresh cuisine influenced by the American South,” aims to open by May 15. Buffalo has seen a lot of interesting restaurants open in recent years, but Toutant (437 Ellicott St.) has the restaurant community all atwitter. It’s like the Rolling Stones coming to town, except Toutant aims to stay. Chef-owner James Roberts ca…

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James Roberts named his new restaurant Toutant, after his family’s hunting camp in the marshlands southeast of New Orleans, a two-hour trip into bayou country by car and boat. But don’t expect a “Cajun” restaurant when the three-story restaurant opens at 437 Ellicott St. The menu will be “accurate renditions of the cuisine of the American South,” Roberts said, upscale com…

Food and Drink

Chefs from some of the most ambitious new restaurants in town – and two that aren’t even open yet – will offer bites to remember at a Nov. 12 fundraiser benefiting a local farm. For the fourth year, “A Big Fuss” will give Buffalo chefs a way to support a Western New York family that makes growing food their job. Proceeds from this year’s event will go to Prudom Farm, run …

Food and Drink

In an epic year of Buffalo restaurant openings, the announcement that James Roberts is opening a restaurant is the cherry on the sundae. Toutant will be on Ellicott Street, next to SeaBar, in the former Golden Swan building, 437 Ellicott St. Roberts will be chef-owner, with Rocco Termini of Signature Development as his landlord. With construction underway, expect it in ea…

Featured

In an epic year of Buffalo restaurant openings, the announcement that James Roberts is opening a restaurant is the cherry on the sundae. Toutant will be on Ellicott Street, next to SeaBar, in the former Golden Swan building, 437 Ellicott St. Roberts will be chef-owner, with Rocco Termini of Signature Development as his landlord. With construction under way, expect it in e…