Food Porn: Taste of Buffalo 2009 (Day 2)

With over 200 options, we obviously left the Taste of Buffalo on Day 1 without trying everything we wanted….but I didn’t think I would end up heading back for another round.  However, on Sunday the weather was awesome and a few friends wanted to meet up…so we decided to go back and sample a few more items from our “Taste wish list”.

Here’s what we tried during Day 2.

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I had such a great experience with a Beef Pattie from Niagara Cafe on Day 1 that I had to try Caribbean Experience‘s version.  They were actually pretty different; Niagara Cafe’s version was very crispy while CE’s pattie was much softer and the meat was ground into a paste and was swimming in a delicious brown gravy.  If I could combine the crispy crust from Niagara Cafe and the meat paste/gravy from Caribbean Experience, I think you might just have the perfect beef pattie.

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Remember how we said we wanted to try out that Pasta con Vodka at Orazio’s Restaurant on Day 1? Well we finally got around to it today, and it was quite lovely.

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One of the goals for Day 2 was to enjoy more desserts, so we decided to try the 3rd menu item from Orazio’s Restaurant (a place I really want to eat at now).  Above is their Puff Pastry with Berries and Chantilly Cream (a sweetened vanilla whipped cream).  The actual pastry was hard to eat while standing/walking with a plastic fork, but the Chantilly Cream was delicious.  Expect to see a Food Porn from here in the near future.

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When I initially walked up to Craftsmen Cafe I was planning on ordering one of their three dessert items.  However the lone non-dessert dish, Mandarin Chicken Pasta, caught my attention instead.  I can honestly say that I really don’t like mayo, and I normally wouldn’t order any type of chicken pasta salad.  However, for some reason this dish was delicious; maybe it was the sweetness of the mandarin oranges or the tiny al dente shells.  (Alli edit: I’m still thinking about this dish.  I can’t really put my finger on what it was that made the salad so great, something about the mayo and the oranges together really hit the spot…I need to make a trip up to Craftsmen Cafe asap to get more).

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All I can really say about this dish is that I knew this sauce was amazing when Alli (who normally dislikes shrimp) took a bite into these Bourbon Glazed Shrimp Skewers and did not immediately state her disdain.   The Grill (located inside Tonawanda Golf Dome) did a great job and I could have easily ate a dozen of these guys.

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This is my choice for the best dish of Day 2.  I never would have thought a dessert would have been my favorite item, and if you told me I would go to EM Chrusciki and not eat their Chrusciki I would have told you that you’re insane.  But while their Chrusciki if obviously great, their Carmel Confusion blew Alli and I away.  This apple crumb crisp style dessert with drizzles of warm caramel will be on the top of my grocery list next time I visit this bakery in the Broadway Market.

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Polish Villa is one of the 60 restaurants on my Food Odyssey list.  After traveling to the Broadway Market earlier this year I have been dying to go and indulge in some serious sausage and pierogies.  So when we visited their booth at Taste I decided to wait on the pierogies and kielbasa for an appropriate sit down visit.  Instead we tried their Strawberry Crepes with Whipped Cream, which compared to my previous Crepe experience at The Chocolate Bar, was much more satisfying.  However, while good, I unfortunately do not think I am a Crepe lover (at least in this form) after trying both.

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Every since 6th grade when I went on a field trip to the now defunct Chi Chi’s, I have been dying to have Fried Ice Cream again.  Luckily for me, Spicy Thai was serving up such a dish.  I think my hopes were too high…while not horrible, it was like a frozen ice cream treat you could get in a freezer at your local 7-11, not at all the amazingness I expected.

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Part 2 of my Stuffed Pepper experiment took place at Wi Tini’s (remember the delicious Lamb Lollies from Day 1?)  These Hungarian Stuffed Peppers with Sausage not only stood out because of the meat in their stuffing, but the cheese had a distinct flavor as well.  The pepper was incredibly hot, however, which was almost distracting.  But out of the two I tried, they were clearly the winner.

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This was one of our ‘last minute’ options for the day; we had some extra tickets left and I was looking for something to spend them on.  When we walked by Torches again I took a list at the rest of their menu and saw Triple Cooked Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings with Pineapple Salsa.   Unfortunately, by 4 pm Sunday they had ran out of Salsa (as to be expected) but I still went for it anyway.

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If this year’s taste of Buffalo taught Alli and I anything, it’s that pork is delicious in any form.  Merchant St Smokehouse blew us away with their Pulled Pork Nachos (Day 1) and their Pulled Pork Eggrolls (above).  This is Alli’s choice for her favorite item from Day 2.  (Alli edit: freakin fantastic…not only the best dish, in my opinion, at the Taste of Buffalo…but the best dish I’ve had in months, period.  The eggroll itself had a wonderful crispness and smokey flavor while the Asian sauteed veggies inside mixed with the beautifully cooked bbq pulled pork made for the perfect stuffing.  The zesty garlic sauce didnt hurt either.  Love.)

This year’s Taste of Buffalo really felt like the first year I truly “enjoyed” the festival.  We turned nothing down, got to endulge in a plethora of delicious dishes, and we managed to avoid every boring restaurant (why would you get Jim’s Steakout?) in favor for something new and exciting.  I’m excited already for June 10th and 11th of 2010 to see what new restaurants/dishes will be served.

One thought on “Food Porn: Taste of Buffalo 2009 (Day 2)

  1. go orazio’s italian restaurant!

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