Transitioning from auto shop to restaurant is not your average business plan, but it made a whole lot of sense to this local couple. Owners Joe and Lisa of Garage Cafe & Lounge have lived and loved in the North Buffalo community for years, 42 to be exact. A series of unfortunate events led them to close the doors at J&L Auto Repair, but their story doesn’t end there.
Refurbishing the space gave this hometown couple a new opportunity, and the new concept is a welcomed addition to Hertel Avenue. This refurb was quite the project, but boy it was well worth the wait.
Here are four reasons why you’ll want to introduce yourself to The Garage Cafe, and thank us later.
1. The Sweets
The buzz about these cinnamon rolls started months ago, and people are still talking about them. Rumor has it these sought-after sweets are the best in Buffalo. A large batch takes 4+ hours to make, so they are only available on Saturdays and Sundays for now. We hear repeat customers show up every weekend at 8 a.m. to get their fix. Heads up: be prepared to get hooked.
2. The Bites
The deliciousness is plentiful on the main menu too. The stacked sandwiches are a customer favorite, especially The Ferrari and The Cadillac paninis. Yes, these sandwiches are named after cars in homage to J&L. The menu is continuing to grow thanks to requests from customers. If you are all about the small plate life, you’re in luck. They have buckets of meatballs, flatbread pizzas, giant pretzels, charcuterie plates, and more.
3. ‘The Wrecking Yard’ – AKA The Beer Garden (Coming Soon)
One of the most exciting developments is in the works right now. A backyard beer garden. YASSS! ‘The Wrecking Yard’ will be officially unveiled August 4th from 6 – 11 pm at their Grand Opening Celebration and will be the largest beer garden on Hertel Avenue. This huge outdoor space is a win for the entire street. Get excited because there will be a beer and wine bar, handmade picnic tables, lawn games, a ribbon cutting at 6 pm, Nick Kody & Lydia Herren hit the stage at 7pm, and the first 50 people get a FREE Koozie. Get more info here!
4. The Live Music
Live music has arrived on Hertel Avenue. Check out bands every Friday night & starting August 8th at their Bike Night on Wednesdays.
We love us a local story, especially this one, so join us in welcoming them to the North Buffalo neighborhood by stopping in for some sweet and savory local eats.
The Garage Cafe
1127 Hertel Ave., Buffalo