17 Awesome Spots for Weekend Lunch in WNY

Pho Dollar Banh Mi

Pho Dollar Banh Mi / Step Out Buffalo

So you have the day off, some time on your hands, chores are done, football as we know it is finished. How about a nice, relaxing lunch out, perhaps with an adult beverage? It is the weekend after all.

Fact is, finding a quality spot open for lunch on the weekend is not as easy as you might think. A lot of the swank joints are closed in prep for a big weekend night. Not to worry, SOB has you covered. Here are some of our favs for weekend lunch this winter, open both Saturday and Sunday.

Allen Burger Venture

These guys specialize in three of the things we cherish most: food, beer, and atmosphere. But ABV goes above and beyond when it comes to each one, and it makes all the difference. Their burgers are as big in creativity and flavor as they are in size, and one step in the place and you’re surrounded by great music in quite possibly one of the coolest spaces in the Queen City. An awesome beer list and we love the fries and the tasting flights of bourbon too. A wait is…

Bar Bill Tavern

The Bar-Bill Tavern is all about coming home. You belong the minute you walk in the heavy wooden doors to when you leave your warm seat at the bar. This pub style tavern brings simplicity back to the local watering hole. Rich wood, a massive marble bar and gleaming brass fixtures transport you to the quintessential American canteen. The stripped-down menu offers Buffalo bar favorites like Jumbo Wings and Beef on Weck. Neither option created at the Bar-Bill, but both perfected here. While you wait for your wings to be…

Big Ditch Brewing Co.

Big Ditch Brewing Co. is one of Downtown Buffalo’s shinning stars when it comes to brewery/restaurant combos. The tap room is huge, yet welcoming and does a fantastic job of showing off the fun, young pulse of the area. Of course, they have beer, and lots of it - which some consider the best around, brewed a mere feet from your bar stool. Then there's the food menu which includes comforting dishes like an outstanding Mac and Cheese, Antojitos, Smoked Salmon Cobb (an absolute must try), and the Breuben...stop in.

Blackthorn Restaurant & Pub

Blackthorn Restaurant & Pub is the quintessential cozy, no pretense South Buffalo joint that has been serving this neighborhood for decades. They offer up good service, a solid beer list, great wings, awesome fish fry, fine Reubens and a lot of return customers. The kind of place people brag about being their hangout "way-back-when" before it was super cool. You can't go wrong with the beer cheese soup and DO NOT miss the home-made tater tots.

Buffalo Brew Pub

New York State's oldest brew pub is "dedicated to fine beer, food, and fun"- our kind of place. They are beer lovers serving up home style, beer lover's food in a pleasant brew pub setting. We love the house made brew, the Mineo & Sapio Sausage Hoagie and the poutine.


Chef/owner Adam Getz is a brilliant craftsman, a work horse in the kitchen, and has cooked at the James Beard House - nuff said. Wife Jennifer works the front of the house where they serve up some of the finest cuisine in town. Everything is good and changing on a regular basis, but the last time we were in we had a Cavatelli with a Sweet Pea pesto about which we still dreaming.

Cugino’s Italian Restaurant

Cugino's is a fine dining establishment catering to the high end clientele of Williamsville serving Northern Italian cuisine. The service style is a bit "European" but it is worth the wait. A full, well stocked bar seems to make these circumstances more bearable. We liked everything from pasta to pork shank

Deep South Taco – Ellicott

SOB Says: At Deep South Taco the Tex-Mex menu features house-made tortillas filled with charred and braised meats, fresh vegetables and spicy sauces. The ingredients are decidedly steeped in the traditional flavors found along Donald Trump’s favorite border, but in modern preparations that might not be found at local Mexican-owned restaurants. With lights tucked into every nook and cranny, the décor at Deep South Taco seems like the perfect prescription for the Seasonal Affected Disorder that blows across Buffalo every winter. The restaurant also features a vintage stereo system built…


This Orchard Park institution and has been pushing out great Beef on Weck and down home fare pretty much forever. Thankfully, very little has changed, including the decor, since the early sixties, in spite of a recent reopening. Devoted customers claim the BOW (and beef in general) is the best in town and we find it hard to argue. We love the German Potato Salad., and the old fashioned folks atmosphere.

Elm Street Bakery and Cafe

This old barn turned bakery has grown to a premier pizza stop, restaurant and store serving up fine foods all day long. The breakfast sandwiches are awesome, salads, sammies on house made bread, brick oven pizza and great diner options round off the can't miss menu. Make sure you sample some local beer and grab a loaf of bread and some pastries to go.

Fat Bob’s Smokehouse

Fat Bob's Smokehouse has been tucked in on Buffalo's cutest street since the late 90's. The rare combination of good bar, good food and good location has kept this business solid for close to two decades. It is locally owned and operated with true Buffalo grit, and pretty much everything is made in-house. Hard to choose a fav, but the Mac and smoked wings are darn good.

Juicy Burger Bar

Juicy Burger is a much loved little spot in the 'burg that serves that little something of which Buffalo/America just can't seem to get enough. As simple as it seems Juicy does a superior job of making America's fav something special. A strong list of 11 varieties with GREAT rolls, the requisite condiments, and good fries rounds out the menu. Add a nice beer and wine list, some craft cocktails and you have yourself the fixin's of a juicy meal.

Pho Dollar

Pho Dollar is an authentic Vietnamese restaurant that is as charming on the inside as it isn't from the street. One step inside and you'll be warmly greeted by "the family" in this lovely little dinner-like setting that they built with their own hands. The food is as good as their welcome and they have a nice bar as well. We love the #4 Goi Cuon and the #35 Mi Bo Kho, and most of all the #8 Banh Xeo – Vietnamese pancakes.


This WNY landmark is on everyone's must stop if you are passing through town. A top Beef on Week mainstay, with the prerequisite carving station, this old school joint will leave a smile on your face all week. Unless you come here regularly you have to get the BOW. We love it with fries and gray on the side to dip.


SEAR is a modern steakhouse situated on the first floor of the Avant (Embassy Suites Hotel). The relaxed, upscale environs are sophisticated yet comfortable. They offer a bar scene with a great vibe, a robust wine list and an innovative menu. We love the salads, the sliders, Lobster Mac and, of course, the steaks.

Water Valley Inn

The Water Valley Inn has been affectionately known as the ditch by locals since the 18 Mile was a trickle; more because it's in the valley than anything, this place is like grandmas house with good beer and better TVs. The crowds build for Friday fish fry late Thursday (or so it seems), but they have plenty of solid comfort food when that's gone. We like the chowder.

Leave a Reply