A corner joint needn't be a dive.
And Papa Jake's doesn't make its patrons choose between a laid-back bar atmosphere and delicious, fresh food. Scott Leary, the new owner of Papa Jake’s Saloon on Elmwood, knows how to provide casual comfort and a very satisfying dining experience.
“We don’t take shortcuts here at Papa Jake’s,” Leary says. He proves this with Papa Jake’s fresh and tasty menu. “I don’t want to call this a late night menu, because we have amazing food from lunch till 1AM.”
Papa Jake’s atmosphere is relaxed, and everyone here is at home. Even on a Monday night, the kitchen is busy pumping out food to both the bar and the dining customers. We couldn't wait to join them. As appetizers, my guest and I had Clams Casino (1/2 dozen, $6.25), Crispy Calamari ($6.25), Papa Jake’s Fresh Cut Fries with gravy ($2.75), and Hot Banana Peppers ($6.75).
The Clams Casino was topped with bacon and baked in the oven. As our server set it down in fron…
With the opening of more and more coffee houses downtown, some people wonder if Buffalo is really a coffee town. Buffalo is the original coffee town!
The "coffee break" which is taken for granted as a standard part of any work day has only been around for about a hundred years. Coffee culture has continued to flourish in this country and the espresso boom of the Pacific Northwest in the 1990s has seen to it that every other gas station in America now has a barista on staff. Perhaps a slight exaggeration, but not farr off. The phenomenon of the coffee break is credited with being invented and promoted first in Buffalo, NY. While Seattle has the Starbucks HQ and endless street corner vendors of mud, Buffalo may well have started the slow and steady need for coffee refills to get us through the day. According to this
It's great to see stylish, hip, new restaurants pop up downtown such as Sea Bar on Ellicott Street, which specializes in contemporary Japanese food. A clean ultra-modern space, Sea Bar’s dining room is quaint and inviting. The sleek sushi bar has counter seating and the wet bar, with beer, sake, and wine, has at least 10 sakes to choose from on any given night. We were happy to try a Sojitio, a sake mojito, which had the right amount of mint without too much sweetness.
Sea Bar has tacked City onto its name as a way to differentiate it from Sea Bar-Williamsville, the other restaurant currently owned and run by the husband and wife team of Michael and Sherri Andrzejewski, formerly owners of the now defunct and highly missed Tsunami Restaurant. Sea Bar-City just opened its doors this Fourth of July weekend, almost exactly 2 years from the opening of their Williamsville restaur…
Ten years ago, the downtown of My Fair City was forever altered when a Big Dinosaur appeared on the scene. Thankfully—unlike 1950’s Tokyo—when this dino showed up our downtown wasn’t flattened, but considerably improved. Dinosaur Bar B Que, a restaurant that originated in downtown Syracuse in the 1980’s, planted its foot in downtown Rochester in 1998. It was an instant hit—it’s common to have a line waiting to get in at all times. And it’s clearly Hog Heaven—for a decade now thousands of Big Bike riders have roared into our downtown and opened their wallets. It’s provided economic development, made downtown more of a destination, and put feet on the surrounding streets. And with all that delicious BBQ aroma drifting around, our downtown even smells better!
The Rochester location is especially nostalgic for m…
Cecelia’s Ristorante & Martini Bar is prepared to guide their guests through the tastes of fall with their brand new fall menu. Although it is getting a bit too cold for the patio, the hardy food inside will warm things right up.
I started out with the Harvest Salad ($8) and the “Lumpy” Crab Cakes ($9). The Harvest Salad was served with a rosemary citrus vinaigrette, and topped with apricots, beets, pine nuts, walnuts, dried cranberries, and other assorted dried fruits. The slight bitterness of the baby spinach counterbalanced the sweetness of the dried fruits and the zest in the vinaigrette, resulting in a great, flavorful salad. The pair of “Lumpy” Crab Cakes was pan seared and served with a spicy chipotle aioli. The crab cakes had great texture and color, but the spicy chipotle sauce made the dish. If your taste buds are sensitive to spicy food, go easy on …
One of the perks my daughter's friends enjoy about a sleepover at my home (other than rearranging the furniture for movie time) are the crepes I serve our guests in the morning.
I can remember sleepover breakfasts from when I was a kid that consisted of potato chips and soda from the night before. If the lack of sleep didn't make us dizzy and irritable enough, the fat, salt and sugar we ingested in the morning would make sure the entire day would be counted for lost. Ugh.
Crepes are easy, delicious and beautiful, and they have nutritive value with just a hint of extra sweetness. The girls have grown to expect them, and I don't have to call anyone to the table twice. In fact, they sit around the kitchen and cheer me on, as the first few crepes never seem to come out right. A few failed "practice crepes" are not uncommon, but once the consistency and rhythm are right, there's…
Steven Calvaneso, a well-known Buffalo entrepreneur who has launched a number of city and suburban restaurants during his career, is shrinking his holdings to a single restaurant location. The Buffalo News has the full story, but it's clear the one-time mayoral candidate has faced struggles with his many operations. As a result of these moves, Calvaneso is left with Bacchus Wine Bar & Restaurant on Chippewa and his catering operation at Babeville.
Months ago, Calvaneso closed The Ultimate Men's Shop on Delaware Avenue. The store, which brought some retail hope to the downtown area, carried high-end lines shoppers couldn't find in other city stores. Early after it's launch, Calvaneso
Restaurants come and go. Obviously they can’t all succeed. When people find out about a new restaurant some say “good luck” and others say “I give it a year.” But what’s an idea for a new restaurant that couldn’t possibly fail in Buffalo? In other words, what would be a “can’t-miss” restaurant in Buffalo? Would the key be a particular concept? Some sort of gimmick?
I love ideas about restaurants but you’d never see me open one. First, because I have no capital. Second, because I don’t know how to run a business. But I do love throwing around ideas. What’s the kind of new restaurant that you think would be a perfect fit in Buffalo? What would be on the menu? What kind of atmosphere would it be? Where would it be located?
About ten years ago I had a horrible idea for a restaurant that I would have named “Grubbies.” The concept was to have customers…
It is a rarity to find a restaurant as elegant as it is comfortable, with a menu that can please picky eaters and foodies alike. DiGiulio & Co. on Hertel is a delightful example of one of these atypical finds. Set back against the nearby storefronts, a very welcoming patio with a garden of beautiful flowers and fresh (utilized!) herbs welcomes diners into the restaurant.
DiGiulio’s is a truly exquisite space—including an open kitchen with attached bar seating, a large and inviting dining area with a picturesque glass ceiling, a sizeable bar, and a well decorated private room. Deanna DiGiulio, partner and daughter of Joanne DiGiulio, warmly greeted us. Beautiful, framed line drawings decorate the perimeter, and the carefully designed seating creates a stylish and relaxed atmosphere. DiGiulio's is equally inviting to couples, families and singles who are looking for a …
I had a full day of editing for BRM ahead of me yesterday, but I woke up with an idea for a meal, and I had to try it.
When I was in Wegmans gathering my ingredients, I met Executive Director of Local Initiatives Support Group (LISC) Michael Clarke and told him about my food dream. "You dream about food?" he asked, somewhat incredulously.
I was about to answer, "Doesn't everyone?" and then I remembered Michael is only half Italian. I considered that my full dose of 'Mediterrania' might be the factor that causes me to dream this way, so I stopped short of any answer.
The idea was to make risotto and fresh peas, which I did. I used a vegetable stock (don't we love that creamy soup base in a jar?) and stirred forever. Making risotto is like driving for me. It's idle-mind time when one gets to think all of their thoughts unobstructed…