Martin is the guys name. Cooks is what he does.
Martin Cooks opened in May 2013 in the Horsefeathers Market & Residences on the west side of Buffalo at the corner of Connecticut and Normal. I want to call it a restaurant, but that somehow falls short. Maybe a restaurant by day and adventure dining night?
Martin Cooks offers a typical restaurant lunch seating. For dinners they hold two seatings, 6:00 and 8:30, for groups or a limited number of people (they like 12, we arranged 15) to sit at the bar and join the party du jour. It somehow reminds me of Thanksgiving dinner. They offer a prix fixe menu ($60) with a wine tasting ($40) if you want, or you can order drinks a la carte. Reservations are a must. Our party was a complete seating, but I gather smaller parties can come based on availability.
This was so much fun I don’t know why there aren’t more places like it. I’d guess not all chef’s have the skill to cook and chat at the same time. Martin certainly does. You walk through the door, Martin and his very friendly and accommodating staff welcome you with a glass of champagne, and from there you’re part of the family. Mix yourself a drink, ask about the menu, wonder back to the kitchen to have a look and compare recipes.
Chef Martin Danilowicz, is a one-time professional golfer, turned chef. Martin worked for some of the finest restaurants in Buffalo and Toronto before going on his own.
Food: The fixed menu changes weekly for diner and Martin is very sensitive to customer needs. If you have any likes, dislikes or food allergies be sure to let him know in advance.
Our menu was:
B.L.T – Tomato soup with crostini of greens, and bacon powder.
Shades of Yellow – a salad of yellow fruits, and vegetables including a yellow plau, apricot and yellow beans.
Smoked Eggplant Mezzaluna -a smokes eggplant filled “ravioli” with raisins, pine nuts and cheese.
Pork Loin with Cherries – with a nice pan sauce, pearl onions and greens. The picture didn’t do it justice (I started eating before snapping).
Choux Peaches & Cream- self described and very fresh.
Menu Items missed: None but I plan to come back soon for lunch.
Everything we had was outstanding- creative, fresh, well presented and the wine pairings very well done. Hats off to everyone at Martin Cooks.
Scene: The best of all worlds in my mind.
1.) You’re in a beautiful space with people waiting on you.
2.) You get a preset menu with wine selection already made (wine selection optional).
3.) Relax, enjoy your party and talk food with the chef in the kitchen.
Clientele: Crazy in our case but…
Beverages: You can choose the wine pairing dinner or order from the wine list that included 8 white, 8 red and Prosecco. They also have a list of 8 beers and cocktails. Feel free to step up to the bar and make your own.
Final thoughts: I can’t remember when I have had more fun at a restaurant. Gather your friends, and give it a try. If you don’t have fun it’s your own fault.
346 Connecticut St. Buffalo NY 14213