Taste of Buffalo (New York) and My Favorite Bites of the Day

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I’m on vacation, visiting friends in Niagara Falls, venturing off  to Toronto and hitting little stopping places along the way. My culinary luck led us to the Taste of Buffalo, which we were told is the largest “taste of” in the country and we just happened to be in the area for it. Nearly every one of the fifty food and wine participants was local, including a few food trucks.

Each vendor offered four items, including a healthy choice and a small tasting choice.

The best bites were chosen in advance, but I have my own opinions, although in fairness, even amongst the four of us sharing sample bites, we couldn’t get to every table. We tried and after three hours, we still couldn’t do it. If I lived here, I would do the taste over two days, no kidding.

What Does Buffalo Eat Besides Wings?

I enjoy traveling and discovering the “local” specialty signature dishes. Most people connect Buffalo with Buffalo wings and rightly so, but it’s hard to go far without eating their version of a cheese steak or another Buffalo original, the beef on weck.

I never heard of a weck which is short for the kummelweck roll, a crusty on the outside, soft on the inside roll topped with salt and caraway. The weck is filled thin slices of rare roast beef and topped with au jus and horse radish. Just delicious, and since it’s gained some fame with the food network, it will be making it’s way across America (I hope).

Western New York’s Italian influence makes for great food and an appreciation of good bread and rolls. Sandwiches such as the pot roast, or brasciolle, Italian sub, and even the What Burger sat upon just the roll and became our favorite bites of the day, including a few surprises like the Southern comfort food that charms everyone everywhere as sweet potato puffs and the Mac N Cheese were unanimously pushed to the top.  While the What Burger from Roaming Buffalo Food Truck was our number 1 pick, only Orazio’s made it into the top seven choices twice with their brasciolle slider  (also voted best overall by the event) and their sweet potato puffs with a honey dip.

Our Top  Seven Choices of the Day and the What?!?! Burger

What Burger with  bacon jam  and peanut butter from Roaming Buffalo Food Truck (try it, before you judge it).

Mac n Cheese

Sweet Potato Puff with Honey Dipping Sauce from  Orazio’s

Roast Beef on Weck from Red Osier

Taco from Lloyd’s Taco Truck

Pot Roast Sandwich from Eddie Ryan’s

Nutella & Banana Sandwich from the Cheesy Chick Mobile Food

We missed out on ordering the 7 ingredient Italian melt.

Brasciolle Slider from Orazio’s

Samosa Chaat from Dehli Chaat Sweets & Restaurant

Oreo Milk Shake from Clarence Center Coffee Company

Unless, we did two days, there was no way to taste all of the food. Sadly, I missed some of the following that I really wanted to try, and this probably doesn’t cover it all. There were wineries, frozen custard, pizza, wings, subs, pasta and all things that scream the Western New York area.

Sausage Cacciatore from the Buffalo Tap Room

Crab Cake & Sicilian Cigar from Bings

Stuffed Banana Pepper from Cecilia’s Ristorante & Martini Bar

I never got to see what they were stuffed with, probably sausage and this gives me ideas.

The Godfather Sub from Dibellas

Old Fashioned Lemon Drop Cupcake from  Chrusciki Bakery

Lobster Gnocchi from Francesca’s

Scallops Vera Cruz from Manhattan’s

Vietnamese Bun (Banh Bao)from Saigon Cafe

Mr. ST below with cane recovering from knee surgery proves his love for food and especially anything with nutella.

It was dark when we left, which gave us this beautiful picture of Buffalo City Hall.

I have enjoyed eating at food events in Los Angeles, Chicago and Nashville, but no where did I find a  perfectly cooked medium rare burger  made with with bacon jam and crunchy  peanut butter from Roaming Buffalo that left me wanting more. The thing that made this burger scream Buffalo was the quality of the beef  and the creativity. Perhaps the peanut butter burger will be the next “hot wings” or “beef on weck.”

Tell me what is the strangest thing you ever ate that you surprisingly loved?

 

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10 Comments

  1. ahhh.. what a good time we had there my friend. Are you coming again next year? If so we have to plan on going both days and getting to all the food booths!

  2. Boy oh boy…..fantastic pics. Gives super props to mucho grubb and a bunch of hard working food industry folks.

  3. As a native of Buffalo, New York. It was wonderful reading a positive review of our city. Usually all we ever hear is how bad the weather is, which to us is better then most parts of the US.
    In my opinion, the beef-on-weck far exceeds chicken wings on any given day.
    Buffalo also had many festivals boasting our regional foods. Hopefully some day you can return and luckily hit a few of them.
    Again, thank you for the good review, it was very refreshing!

  4. Angela, Peanut butter on a burger! Wow that is mind boggling.
    I totally agree that it’s fun to try new and unexpected goodies, especially on vacation.
    One of my strangest bites ( or actually sips) that I enjoyed was an avocado shake. I love avocado but tend towards the guacamole side of things. This shake was sweet and limey and so damned good!
    xo
    E

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