Food Porn: Lagerhaus 95

If you are planning on going to an event at First Niagara Center, there is unfortunately a lack of good dining options within walking distance.  On top of that, the restaurants that we do enjoy (Swannie House, WJ Morrisey’s) are usually insanely packed in the time leading up to any event.  So when we first heard about Lagerhaus 95 and their gastro-pub style menu was opening right off Cobblestone on Perry St, we were pretty excited.  Everyone knows there are plenty of good restaurants in Allentown, North Buffalo and the Elmwood Village, but in this area of downtown Buffalo there is definitely a lack of quality.

For some reason we decided to try out their food minutes before Van Halen’s concert at First Niagara (that we did not attend).  Sure the ‘scenery’ at Lagerhaus 95 was entertaining and people watching on the metro train was well worth the wait/hassle, but in retrospect we should have picked a calmer night.  The location itself has been completely renovated, with tall tables and stools lining the dining area and a large bar area.  We walked into the restaurant to see a sign asking customers to seat themselves, luckily we found a couple who were just leaving when we got there.  Their menu before events is limited, so their entire normal menu wasn’t available for dinner but we still managed to sample some of their more popular items.

Quick Info:

  • Restaurant Type: Restaurant/Bar
  • Cuisine: Gastropub, German
  • Location: Old First Ward
  • Prices: Sandwiches ~$10, Entrees $10-20

We had the pleasure of trying their African Peanut Soup (pictured below) at the Buffalo Soup-fest earlier this year and we were excited to try another bowl.  Luckily, they were still serving their signature soup on their limited menu and it did not disappoint.  Don’t let the name fool you or scare you away, it definitely packs a strong flavor but it’s nothing too exotic.  It has a very sugary sweet flavor, a hint of spice and a subtle peanut butter taste and texture that coats your mouth.  Before the Soup-fest this was a special item that they would have occasionally on the menu, but after the positive response they’ve put the soup on the menu full time.  We visited on a chilly night and  it turned out to be a very good choice, I’d order the soup again in a heartbeat.

Alli ordered their signature menu item, the Hindenburger ($12, pictured above).  An 8oz angus burger topped with aged Gouda, braised onions and finished with a fried egg; all of this sits in between a fresh pretzel roll.  The burger was cooked to a wonderfully juicy and tender medium rare, you can see the cross section below for proof of the burger’s messy deliciousness.  I’m not sure if it’s the city’s best burger but it’s definitely up there in my rankings.  The fresh cut french fries that came with her burger were very oily and slightly soggy, we didn’t really eat too many since they were also lukewarm when they came to the table.

I ordered their Schnitzel Fingers ($10, pictured in gallery), thinly pounded pork tenderloin that were cut into strips and then breaded in panko and deep fried.  They were actually pretty awesome, the thin panko breading allowed the sweet pork flavor to still come through, the only negative being they were overly greasy (you had to wipe your hands after handling them).  Served on the side was a strong mustard dip (with plenty of seeds) and a creamy sweet and sour ranch dip, both dips had a really strong flavor that went well with the fried pork.

I’d love to go back on a non-event night so that I can try some of their more interesting options.  They offer other German specialties like sausages (from Spars, a local butcher shop) and rosti, along with several panini’s and sandwiches.  Their beer selection is definitely above average, with 8 imported beers on draft and an even larger selection of bottles.  I’m happy to see a quality dining option being added to this area of downtown, I think the restaurant is definitely worth a drive on its own and is a great option for a pre-Arena event.  Just make sure that you have plenty of time because the place gets crowded very easily.

Photo Gallery:

Lagerhaus 95 on Urbanspoon

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