food 28 décor 27 service 27 cost - $ 27
This Urban-Sleek Restaurant is reminiscent of a hip, retro San Francisco eatery. Candles galore, seductive clandestine music, and a happening bar make it very cutting edge. I was very impressed Easily top five Trying to think (unsuccessfully) why it isnt in my top three. Best calamari in the city. An elite meet to eat place. Every aspect is very strong. Next time, you have to try either the duck, the lamb or veal ragu, or the penne risotto.
Chris NY Sandwich Co. 395 Delaware Avenue (between Tupper & Edward) Buffalo, New York 14202
food 25 décor 19 service 26 cost - $ 7.00
A generous sandwich made with the freshest bread and finest ingredients is the motto of this wonderful downtown lunchtime-only eatery. Their second expansion has almost doubled the seating capacity, which should help move more throngs of hungry patrons. The mostly black and white motif has a special dineresque quality thats as clean and crisp as the white shirts of the staff. Fabulous. Superior quality and quantity. Wonderful presentation. I can get in and out quickly. Its crazy between noon and two.
Coles Restaurant 1104 Elmwood Avenue Buffalo, New York (716) 886-1449
food 22 décor 23 service 26 cost - $15
Established in 1934, Coles is a casual classic on Buffalos Elmwood Strip. As city traditions go, I typically find myself in the cozy, clandestine original section with dark wood, white linen, and the bar. For the review, however, we ate in the relatively newer, bigger, and bolder annex. Its multitude of front windows, plants, and cathedral ceiling was very nice and seemed perfect for a great lunch or Sunday Brunch. The area around the fireplace was more conducive for a fine winters evening meal.
Crabby Joes Bar and Seafood Restaurant 166 Franklin Street (Corner of West Mohawk) Buffalo, New York 856-4851
Food 24 décor 23 service 24 cost - $21. Nestled within the heart of downtown Buffalo on Franklin and Mohawk, most people know Crabby Joes as a sophisticated after work hangout for business professionals and attorneys. More seasoned epicurean types also know what a great place it is for fresh pasta and seafood. Dominating Cinzano artwork hangs in the back dining room with crisp linen everywhere. Best appetizers Ive ever had. Great presentation the fin-shaped plates seemed especially appropriate. We had an excellent serving of stuffed banana peppers. More specials than you could count I would have loved them all.
Eddies Orchard Park Brewery & Grill 4244 North Buffalo Road
Orchard Park, New York 14127 www.eddiesgrill.com
food 19 décor 19 service 26 cost - $ 14.
If variety is the spice of life, Eddies is the spice warehouse. With so many personalities, one has to be right for you. In addition to being a surprisingly nice ten-table restaurant, it has a very descent micropub brewery/bar, and a convenient bowling alley attached. Its food is also diverse, with German, Italian, American, Cajun, and Mexican, and a few more hiding in the wings. As one would expect, the patrons of this eclectic establishment hit every demographic group. From old guys drinking beers to young sheilas partying hard, expect to see everything at Eddies. Beery-beery good. They have everything under the sun. We come for the Eddies Belly Buster Its Beautiful. Jim and Lou do an outstanding job.
Fredi the Restaurant 6010 Goodrich Road Clarence Center, New York 14032 (716) 741-4012
Food 26 décor 25 service 24 cost - $ 25.00
Are you ready? Lets do the Fredi! Its definitely worth the drive to the hinterlands of Clarence Center (at least the directions are easy: out on Main Street, turn left on Goodrich). In addition to outstanding French Country fare, youll meet one of the most gracious and gregarious hosts in Western New York. The restaurant is tastefully sensual. With the glow of defused lighting, rocket red walls, original paintings, and the Danish blonde bar and wood floors, one could easily mistake it for a Manhattan bistro. With an excellent wine list and the hosts knowledge and propensity to pick winners for every course, I suggest ordering a wide array of wines by the glass. Look for Blues piano on Sunday evenings, cooking classes on Tuesdays and check for special events and theme parties. Fredi also operates My Personal Chef, a venue providing busy people with convenient delivered gourmet meals. Awesome wine list. Magic Mushrooms and Lobster Ravioli were tremendous. Fredi is cool. Weve been here several times. Its always good.
Gramma Moras 1465 Hertel Avenue Buffalo, New York 14216 (716) 837-6703
food 22 décor 21 service 26 cost - $12
Originating on Niagara Street in 1980, Gramma Moras Restaurant has been serving authentic Mexican (Chihuahua) cuisine from family recipes handed down through generations for more than a century. After a devastating fire, the family has re-established itself on Hertel Avenue for the last three plus years with tremendous results. Hanging piñatas, cactus plants, decorative chili lights and a large mural highlight a festive décor. Best Green Sauce in the City its nose running hot, hot, hot. The Sopa is to die for you cant get it anywhere else. The flan is flantastic.
Jimmy Macs Sunday Brunch 555 Elmwood Avenue Buffalo, New York 14222 (716) 886-9112
food 21 décor 20 service N/A cost - $ 13
Jimmy Macs, with its dark wood paneling, long bar, enclosed patio, good food, and back poolroom, has been a favorite of Buffalos elite for more than twenty-two years. Its recent change from a la carte to buffet brunch has been a great hit. Selection and price are outstanding. We come in for the atmosphere. Its always a great time with friends. The variety is very good. We look forward to the different specials every week. I felt quite decadent in a good way.
La Marina Market and Grille 1503 Hertel Avenue Buffalo, New York 14216 (716) 834-9681 www.lamarinaonline.com
food 26 décor 19 service 26 cost - $ 18.
This casual restaurant/fish market is neighborhood in the best sense of the word. The sumptuous display of fabulous desserts as you first walk in is a telltale of the great things to come. I loved the bisque, it rocks lobster. Two Yums Up. My favorite is the Rainbow Trout. Their creamy smooth crab cakes are the best in Buffalo. Wonderful presentation. I always save room for desserts.
O 3047 Sheridan Drive Amherst, New York 14226 (716) 332-4656 www.letter15.com
food 26 décor 27 service 26 cost - $ 30. Metropolitan, futuristic, minimalist, and abstract could all be terms used to describe this higher-end Asian restaurant and jazz lounge. But the best term would simply be O-utstanding. David and Bryan bring a culinary background to the table that is difficult to duplicate. Its gari, gari good. West coast quality. Presentation was terrific. Really cool atmosphere. Most exciting salad (Grilled) Ive ever had. Miso soup was great. Stupendous.
Off the Wall 534 Elmwood Avenue Buffalo, New York 14222 (716) 884-9580 fax (716) 884-9986 www.offthewallonline.com
food 25 décor 26 service 27 cost - $22
Opened for slightly more than a month at this writing, Off the Wall is exactly whats advertised, off the wall. Patrons of this trendy, unusually unorthodox place can purchase almost everything that they see. There is much to see, and it changes frequently. From estate sale sofas and savvy salads to Luckasa artwork and early morning espresso, everything in this constantly evolving environment can and does go. Bands appear Thursdays, and a D.J. entertains Fridays and Saturdays. It was fabulous. Quirky. Each appetizer was great in its own way. An unique, organic, orgasmic experience. An artists play room.
99 Fastfood Restaurant Review 3396 Bailey Avenue 93 Niagara Street (716) 836-6058 (716) 852-0462 www.99fastfood.com
food 23 décor 19 service 26 cost - $ 7.
Authentic Vietnamese cuisine, in addition to being quick and cheap, was outstanding. Ho Nguyen and the boys really do it up right. If you ask the natives (of which there are plenty), theyll tell you that the soup is the thing; however, everything is great. Unlike Chinese food, each dish has its own distinct flavor. Fresh is the most abundant word on every patrons lips. Its newest location, on Bailey Avenue, was just as good as the more traveled location on Niagara (across from City Hall).
Pizza Plant (Walker Center)Pizza Plant (Transit) 5110 Main Street 8020 Transit Road 626-5566 Fax 626-0076 632-0800 Fax 632-4531 pizzaplant.com
food 20 décor 21 service 26 cost - $ 12.00
At Pizza Plant, the Pod is the thing. There are eighteen on the menu or you can create your own. In fact, many are named after their customer creators. The most popular are the Amy Pod, the Cajun Pod, and the Sicilian Steak Pod. One gets a clean, safe sub-urban feel when sitting in the family-friendly booths that dominate the seating. Expect to see many divorced dads with their young ones playing at the table with actual pizza dough. Overall, its a very creative place with high-quality ingredients and a nice staff. The half-pound Black Angus is new to the menu and is quite tasty. Pizza, beer, and wheat-free pasta are featured every Wednesday. There are an extensive number of vegetarian dishes on a very customer-driven menu. Other menu favorites include Southwest Nachos, Pasta Louisiana, Chicken Sausage Bomboro, and Chicken Burrito.
Saigon Café 1098 Elmwood Avenue Buffalo, New York 14222 (716) 883-1252 www.thesaigoncafe.com
food 27 décor 25 service 26 cost - $ 15
Serving Vietnamese and Thai cuisine, the Saigon Café is certainly a highlight of the Elmwood and Forest avenues restaurant scene. Having only 12 tables, the restaurant is intimate and elegant, with a subdued décor of light-colored woods, subtle bamboo wallpaper, indirect lighting, and hauntingly melodic Asian music in the background. In addition to the wonderful food and competent staff, the Saigon Cafe should be extremely proud of its delightful tabletop presentation. All in all, it easily adds up to Metro Chic. It seems to be a popular place with the locals, even on a late Tuesday evening. Extensive vegetarian selections are available. Other popular favorites include the Vietnamese Pancake, the Pad Thai Noodles, the Yum Nua Salad, the Thai Duck, and the Tofu vegetarian dishes.
Viet-Wow. A slice of Bangkok in Buffalo. Each item was better than the next. We love the vegetarian Spicy Rainbow But theyll do (substitute) everything vegetarian. We come here often the Dancing Seafood is excellent.
Ulrichs Tavern 674 Ellicott Street Buffalo, New York 14203 (716) 855-8409 www.ulrichstavern.com
food 23 décor 23 service 26 cost - $ 16.00
Gemutlichkeit! For more than 130 years (eight years before Custers infamous ride), Ulrichs Tavern has provided a public house where one can enjoy good food, drink, and camaraderie. Since 1954, the Daley Family has held the torch and has added both a German and Irish touch. Over the years, its become famous for its lunches, history dinners, St. Pattys Day festivities, and Christmas in July. The German cuisine and portion size make it tough to be a clean platter. What German food should be. European Comfort Food. Some of the best potato pancakes Ive ever had. Barrel House 85 West Chippewa Street Buffalo, New York (716) 856-4645
food 19 décor 17 service 26 cost - $ 8.
The Barrel House is Buffalos quintessential shot and a beer guys bar. This dark woody place, surrounded by a century of memorabilia and the latest beer displays, is a favorite of executive and laborer alike. Dont look for tea and crumpets or a salad, but their soups and chili are some of the best in the city and it gets to you fast. Youll never go wrong with the specials. Cajun wings are outstanding. They have the best soups; my favorite is the red pepper and sausage.