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Just like "Old Town Road," a new Niagara Falls bar-restaurant will have horses in the back, at least in a manner of speaking. With 26 televisions and a shared door with Off-Track Betting, Mister M's House of Food & Drink hopes to make gambling on horses attractive to a broader demographic, namely young people and women, as opposed to starting a "traditional, stereot…

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Public Espresso opens its second store next week, in the Shea's Seneca building in South Buffalo, it'll be a homecoming of sorts. Both company founders, Sam Scarcello and James Rayburg, grew up in South Buffalo. Both business partners' parents still live about a mile from the building at 2178 Seneca St., at the corner of Cazenovia. Reinvigorated by Schneider Developm…

Food and Drink

The owner of Duke’s Bohemian Grove Bar is buying the bar across the street with plans to turn it onto a nightspot for “all of Buffalo.” J.J. Alfieri said that 256 Allen St., formerly Exchange on Allen and the Bend, is under contract. “It’s 95% done,” he said of the deal. Called Flavors of Allentown, “It's going to be a really fun place,” Alfieri said. “It's going to …

Food and Drink

La Divina tacos, Falafel Bar Mediterranean dishes and live music are coming downtown as EXPO food hall shakes up its Main Street location. At 617 Main St., J.J. Alfieri, Paul Tsouflidis and partners have a new mix of food and entertainment coming for the fall. To the Burmese and sushi stylings of Sun Roll, fresh fixings from Newbury Salads and coffee bar standards from …

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The four existing restaurants appear to be just the start of the Griffon Gastropub dynasty, as co-owners Ken Scibetta and Ed Webster announced plans to open the Griffon Brewery, at 200 Lockport St. in Youngstown. Expected to open in late 2020 at the former Melloni's Market Place, close to Old Fort Niagara, the 6,000-square-foot space will be transformed into a brewery-r…

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There's a fierce national trend, especially among millennials, toward limiting alcohol consumption or abstaining altogether. Given the rise of local breweries and ongoing Bills tailgate antics, Buffalo seems to lag behind the rest of the country, but we eventually catch up. At its grand opening Sept. 27, the Speak Easy (1194 E. Lovejoy St.) will represent one of the are…

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For a chain restaurant to survive in a commercial district packed with competitive local businesses, its product had better exceed the standard or the demise will be quick. Just ask Hero Burger, formerly on Elmwood. BurgerIM, a halal burger franchise that held its grand opening Sept. 20 at 1460 Hertel Ave., could stick around. The fast-casual approach suits a young, bus…

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That was fast. Just a few days after Village Beer Merchant announced it would leave North Buffalo to consolidate its efforts on Elmwood Avenue, restaurateur Mike Shatzel revealed that he and Peter Braun will take over 1535 Hertel Ave. to open a second location of Moor Pat. Shatzel hopes to have the craft-beer bar, equipped with 24 taps, open by February. He expects the …

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Eighty restaurants will donate part of their evening’s proceeds for local HIV programs on Oct. 1, the 17th edition of Dining Out for Life. All participants need to do is eat at a participating venue in Erie, Niagara, Orleans or Chautauqua counties. These restaurants will send from 25 to 100 percent of their food bills to the charity, and some will include alcohol sales.…

Food and Drink

Cecelia's Ristorante, an Elmwood staple for 18 years, will close after Sunday brunch. The Elmwood Avenue restaurant announced the news on Instagram Saturday. The restaurant mixed martinis and Italian food. Its front patio was a popular summertime destination, especially for brunch. In 2001, Just Pizza owner Rudy Alloy opened Cecelia's as a fine-dining alternative …

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The battle for Asian cuisine supremacy in the Walden Galleria food court has intensified. With Easy Wok and Oyishi Japan already in place, newcomer Sushi-Q opened Sept. 9, next to Arby's, selling a strong assortment of prepackaged sushi and three varieties of Japanese ramen. The Galleria's Sushi-Q marks the chain's entrance into the United States market; eight other loc…

Food and Drink

Novel, the Italian-centered white tablecloth restaurant on Transit Road, has announced its closing. "It comes with great sadness that NOVEL Restaurant will be permanently closing down at the end of this week," its Facebook page said Wednesday. Sunday, Sept. 22 will be its last day of service, it said. Richard Semonian and David Petruzzo opened the spot at 7170 Tra…

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National Pasta Day will have a little extra meaning in Buffalo this year. Iconic Chef's Restaurant, the Italian restaurant operating in Buffalo since 1923, announced its first expansion project in February, an on-the-go option on Sheridan Drive, in the Williamsville Place plaza, inside the old Damon's and Beauty Quest Skin Care. Early Wednesday morning, owners Mary B…

Food and Drink

Grand Island will get a little restaurant from a chef with big-league experience when Sam Reda opens Zobud Bistro. The cozy spot at 1879 Whitehaven Road will seat about 32 people for a fine dining-leaning menu, Reda said, with maybe a few more seats in a patio space out front. It was formerly Baked Cupcakery. If Reda opens the place Friday, as planned, it will be his…

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House of Hummus owner Ahmed Hamideh shut down his Elmwood Village location in late May to focus on his original spot, at 1150 Hertel Ave., hoping the chance to "regroup" and grow a more centralized following would sustain his business, perhaps revisiting the addition of a second location in the future. The Middle Eastern restaurant - lauded for its vegetarian options, J…