You’ve carved the turkey, slid some canned cranberry sauce down your throat, and had two slices of pie (it’s still only 2 if they’re ¼ of the pie, right?). You’ve held hands during grace and napped for way too long on Grandpa’s couch.
Thanksgiving is over.
But Friendsgiving has just begun. (Unless you’re reading this before Thanksgiving because you’re a planner, which is fine too.)
Potluck’s are of course an awesome way to get together with besties and show off your cooking skills, but there are other options if you’ve had your fill of kitchen time. Why not indulge in some delicious local cuisine this year? We’ve rounded up some of Buffalo and Western New York’s best restaurants for sharing because hey, that’s what Friendsgiving is all about.
Lucy Ethiopian Cuisine
338 Amherst St., Buffalo
Lucy Ethiopian Cuisine is a fork-free, platter-full restaurant in Black Rock. Bring close friends and family and order one of the platters. Ethiopian meals are typically served on injera (a very soft, spongy, sweetish sourdough flatbread with almost no gluten in it) with the meal’s components spread out. You use your hands to roll up pieces and feed yourself. Everyone can taste what they want and share with each other at Lucy.
490 Rhode Island St., Buffalo
Like it’s name suggestions, Providence Social is a great place to gather for drinks and dinner with friends or family. They have a really nice selection of small plates to mix and match, from your traditional charcuterie board to lamb kofta flatbread, crispy cauliflower, and kalbi sliders.
Aro Bar de Tapas
5415 Sheridan, Amherst
Buffalo has been too long without a legitimate Spanish tapas bar, but Aro Bar de Tapas has come to fill that void. You might not all be able to fly to Barcelona or San Sebastian, but a trip to Aro Bar de Tapas is the next best thing. The menu is huge at this place! If you really don’t think your crew will be able to decide, stop by Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday evenings for the Chef’s Tasting Menus. It’s definitely on the pricier side ($55 per person for the ‘basic’ Chef’s Menu; everyone at the table must participate), but you’ll have a customized selection of incredible dishes. If you’d like beverage pairings, add at least another $15 per person. Make sure you make reservations, and enjoy yourself. It’ll be a Friendsgiving to remember.
West Side Bazaar
25 Grant St., Buffalo
I’m also finding new reasons to recommend the West Side Bazaar, but it really is a great place for Friendsgiving. The Bazaar has a wonderful group of diverse food stands, from Indian, to Burmese, to Thai, to Ethiopian and more. And – if money talk peaks your interest – is really, really inexpensive. Everyone can order their own plates, or grab some of the larger plates offered at each stand and share. The atmosphere is relaxed and usually full of laughter and chatter. Bring the whole group – everyone can try something new, share with each other, and most importantly, support local business!
437 Ellicott St., Buffalo
Bring together your favorite possé at Toutant, a restaurant with Southern Louisiana roots and produce from New York’s strong farming community. Get ready for a meal with some love and comfort. Small plates, perfect for sharing, include Hush Puppies, cast iron corn bread, pork rind cracklins, and oysters.