This restaurant has since closed.
Spoiler Alert: Pot Roast Sandwich Involved
McKenzie’s Bar & Grill on route 5 in Hamburg has been a local favorite for years. Located directly across the street from Lake Erie, diners get a nice view of the lake, the windmills and maybe part of the city on a clear day. We had heard good things about the stuffed banana peppers and the porch view, so we thought we would give a try.
On a weekday afternoon for lunch the crowd was mostly well into the baby boomers generation. We grabbed a seat ourselves that had a nice view (too cold for porch) and were promptly greeted by the hostess. The old place is a little worn around the edges in some spots, but the bar area and the main dining room have a nice patina that comes with experience. Dark wood trim gives the bar space a dark but cozy feel, the newer “windowed” room has a better view and is a lot brighter.
I was pleasantly surprised by the offering on the menu. They have plenty to chose from, and a nice variety of comforting pub food, appetizers, salads, sandwiches, pastas and entrees- plus some lunch specials. We started with their famous stuffed hot banana peppers – $9.99. I ordered the blackened grouper sandwich with coleslaw. My companion went with the Pot Roast sandwich special and fries.
The peppers are a blend of their “own special herbs, seasonings and a blend of assorted cheeses”. Five good size peppers served on garlic toast were plenty for two. The peppers were good, spicy but not too hot. I’d say more of a bready stuffing than cheesy. I would have liked more cheese.
The Grouper sandwich comes with lettuce, tomato on a Costanzo’s roll – $10.99. I added some lemon and tartar sauce. The fish was nicely blacked and good, fresh and tasty. I’d get it again. The slaw was good, but pretty routine.
The star of the show was clearly the Pot Roast Sandwich – served with caramelized onions, horseradish mayo and crumbled blue cheese on a toasted Kaiser roll – $7.99. $7.99? You could feed a small village with this. I’d have been jealous but I knew, based on the size, I’d be getting my bites. Never mind the size, the beef was mouth wateringly tender, and the sandwich full of deep flavors that might not suit a more delicate dinner. The fries were OK, but nothing to write home about.
They have a good selection of beer with Goose Island, and 4-5 more on tap, and several in bottle. I didn’t see a wine list.
Items for which we’ll be back:
I’ve heard good things about their Pittsburgh Salad – cross cut fries, tomatoes, cucumbers and red onions on a bed of mixed greens with a warm Riviera dressing – $9.99 with chicken breast, $10.99 with steak. If fries on your salad isn’t you idea of health food they offer another seven salads with interesting items like Mandarin oranges, goat cheese and Buffalo Chicken.
- Goat Cheese Stuffed Artichoke Hearts – Battered and breaded, served with raspberry chipotle dipping sauce. $8.99
- McKenzie’s Chicken – Char grilled chicken breast topped with sautéed baby spinach, artichoke hearts, sun dried tomatoes, olive oil, garlic and asiago cheese. $15.99
- Captain’s Platter – Served broiled or fried, half haddock, two jumbo shrimp, 1/4 lb. seas scallops and one crab cake. Includes potato and cole slaw. $22.99
On the lunch or lighter side they have flat bread pizzas, panninis, a nice selection of traditional sandwiches, burgers and several pasta dishes.
If you are looking for more of a traditional entree you won’t be disappointed with a full selection of seafood including Haddock for a Buffalo fish fry and several other preparations, salmon, shrimp scallops and more. They have four chicken dishes, pork chops, steaks, and ribs.
If you’re looking for a friendly, casual place to stop with a nice view of the lake, and plenty to offer the entire family, give McKenzies your full attention and order the Pot Roast Sandwich if it shows up on the list of specials. In addition to all of the above McKenzies was also named to our Top 10 Fish Fry Places in the Southtowns list.
McKenzie’s Bar & Grill DETAILS
4151 Lake Shore Rd. (Rte 5), Hamburg NY 14075