Food Porn: La Hacienda

When a restaurant is only open 6 hours a day, has limited parking and only takes cash, they better have good food to make up the fact that it might be a struggle for people to dine there.  La Hacienda in Niagara Falls is only available for dinner from 4pm to 10pm (except for Tuesdays when they’re closed the entire day) and they only take cash.  When Alli and myself drove to the restaurant on a Friday night we were very nervous that we wouldn’t be able to get a table, there isn’t much parking in the area and it seemed like every side street was packed with cars.  We lucked out and grabbed what seemed to be the last open table in their dining room.

The interior is a little odd, with a lot of Mexican/Cowboy (notice the place-mat above) imagery painted on the walls.  If you walked in not knowing anything about the place you probably wouldn’t think you’d find a menu full of pizza and red sauce Italian classics.  The tables were really packed together and borderline uncomfortable, our table was along a wall but was literally surrounded on all three sides with other tables that were so close that when someone got up their chair backed right into us.  The restaurant seems like they haven’t changed much in the last 50 years and all of the waitresses were wearing matching old-fashioned outfits.

Quick Info:

  • Restaurant Type: Casual, Family Friendly
  • Cuisine: Pizza, Italian
  • Prices: Pizza – $10/$13 (S/L), Wings $7 (S), Entrees $10-15
  • Location: Niagara Falls

The main reason that we drove out to Niagara Falls was to try La Hacienda’s pizza.  We’ve heard that their New York style thin crust pizza is among the best in Western New York.   Their menu is actually much larger then just pizza and wings; along with the standard red sauce Italian menu items they also have several different steak, chicken and seafood entrees.  Their place mats talk about how much time and effort they put into each meal and to sit back and relax, which made me think that they essentially are warning customers that long wait times might be ahead.  Luckily that wasn’t an issue for us; we placed our order with our waitress (who was slightly unfriendly) and just a short time later had our small pizza and single order of chicken wings at our table, we honestly barely waited 10-15 minutes.

In that short wait time we overheard a conversation going on between the owner/chef Aldo Evangelista and a group from Vancouver who came to Niagara Falls just for La Hacienda’s pizza (I’m guessing they also came to visit family).  At one point they were telling him how delicious the pepperoni was and we overheard Aldo mention something about making his own and ordering a ‘special blend’.  All of this pizza and pepperoni talk made Alli and myself incredibly eager to eat.

The pizza (and pepperoni) did not disappoint, the tasty combination of whole milk mozzarella, spicy pepperoni and a really good thin crust won over both Alli and myself.  The edges of the crust were slightly burned but in a lovely way that gave each bite a nice crunch, the dough underneath the toppings had a great mixture of crunch and chewiness.  The pepperoni was delicious, their slices were slightly larger then your normal pepperoni but what really stood out was their strong spicy flavor.  The sauce was pretty standard and not as impressive as it’s counterparts, but overall it didn’t really matter since the rest of the pizza was so delicious.

We also ordered a single order of chicken wings (pictured above) that were pretty standard and not really worth even mentioning.  They were incredibly crispy and almost too dry for my liking.  They weren’t saucy at all and didn’t require licking your fingers/using a napkin after handling each wing.

The meal was incredibly affordable (our bill was ~ $20) and the pizza was very very good, probably the best NY style pizza we’ve had in Western New York since starting the blog.  While the interior and service might leave something to be desired, the pizza was good enough to warrant a return trip.  I’ve been more curious lately to discover good places to eat outside of Buffalo and it’s surrounding suburbs and restaurants like La Hacienda are definitely worth the trip.  If your a pizza lover like Alli and myself, you should definitely add this place on your to do list.

Photo Gallery:

La Hacienda on Urbanspoon

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