Today on the blog, we are talking to a couple of local podcasters: Rich Douglas and Bill Easton from the new podcast Guys Telling Stories. We came across the podcast after listening to their episode with the legendary restauranteur Russell Salvatore and have been listening ever since. For those who aren’t familiar, the podcast is about people in Western New York who have accomplished impressive things. Go check out their website to listen to their seven episodes they’ve released so far (they are usually around 30 minutes each) featuring guests like Emily from Step Out Buffalo, Sabres anthem singer Doug Allen and the owners of Rusty Nickel Brewing.
We decided to reach out to Rich and Bill about their favorite places to eat and drink in WNY, here’s what they had to say:
Right now, where are your favorite places to eat in WNY?
Rich: Pizza Plant is one of our favorite places to eat in WNY. I usually order the Tex Mex Salad with a Spinach Bread bowl on the side. The newer location at Canalside is great before a game, but the Transit Road location is our go-to spot. When we’re in the mood for something upscale, EB Green’s Steakhouse has great food and is a great value. Order the Ribeye Steak medium rare with Crispy Fried Onions and Crumbly Blue Cheese on top.
Bill: Caffe’ Espresso has some of the best Italian in Buffalo. The portions, desserts, and wine pours are HUGE!! Unfortunately (or fortunately for me because I always get a table), it isn’t as well-known as it should be. There is a small bar with a nice selection of martinis and after dinner beverages. The house specialty is the homemade Pappardelle Bolognese—zesty veal, pork, and beef ragu sauce over homemade pappardelle. Delish!
Where do you like to grab a drink after work with some pals?
Rich: When is weather is warmer, any place with a patio or rooftop bar is ideal—Tappo downtown, Hamburg Brewery in the Southtowns, or Moor Pat in Williamsville. Also, Lenox Grill is great any time of year. Their beer menu is massive, and their burger is one of the best I’ve ever had.
Bill: Well, before work…since I normally start work in the evening, the Griffin Gastropub has a great selection of spirits in addition to 100 taps! After work, Buffalo Brew Pub because it’s kitchen is open later than other pubs serving their full dinner menu. They also offer free popcorn and peanuts. Both places have friendly bartenders and great bar food too if you’re hungry.
If you had a friend visiting from out of town, where would you take them for a good “Buffalo” time?
Rich: Lately, we been taking out-of-towners to RiverWorks. They’re impressed by its size, the industrial design, the ice rinks, and the fact that it’s right on the Buffalo River. We’d probably also take them to a few of the distilleries or breweries as well, maybe even book a pedal bike tour.
Bill: “716” is spectacular. Shows off the new Buffalo waterfront and recent development and has all the Buffalo staples on the menu. Close enough to show off the new medical campus and then make a quick stop at WNY’s oldest tavern, Ulrich’s!
What are some of your favorite food memories from your childhood?
Rich: Growing up, we always went to pizza places as a family. One of my first food memories is eating pizza and wings at Lunetta’s Restaurant. Over the years, the family tradition continued at Sorrentino’s Spaghetti House. We probably ordered their Party Pack over a hundred times.
Bill: Ground Round popped into my head first. Peanuts and Popcorn everywhere! But, my favorite was Duff’s Buffet on Maple! Not the wing place…they had a rotating Buffet! You would just stand there and the Buffet would spin like the airport baggage carousel bringing new foods and treats as you wait. People used to wait in line for hours. As kids we would have fun going to the drink machine and mixing all kinds of pop together.
What types of cuisines/restaurants would you like to see more of in WNY?
Rich: It would be nice to have more casual, lounge options for date night or a birthday get-together. For example, we are really impressed with the M Lounge upstairs at Mangia. It would be great to see a few more places like that with comfortable seating, cool music, and simple, easy food & drink menus.
Bill: Buffalonians are very lucky to have so many great options close by and easy to get. If you travel a lot, you get it…it’s usually pretty tough to find good eats on road! I would like to see a high end music restaurant. Buffalo has some cool music venues, but a lot of them are pretty beat down. Something like House of Blues would be cool. A fresh place that serves dinner & cocktails but is also designed from the stage out.
We’d like to thank Rich and Bill for taking time out of their busy schedules to answer. If you aren’t following their podcast already, keep in touch by following along on Facebook, Twitter or subscribe on iTunes.