Updated August 2015
The vibrant business community that exists along Hertel Avenue in North Buffalo features dozens of locally owned gift shops, boutiques, art galleries and eateries. There is never a dull moment thanks to an obvious commitment to improving the economic and commercial well-being of the entire neighborhood.
Here is a list of seven destinations you should consider visiting the next time you visit one of Buffalo’s premier areas for dining, shopping and much, much more:
Admire some art and antiques
Taking a stroll through Silent Voices Gallery is always a special treat for the eyes. Located at 1495 Hertel Avenue in the center of the neighborhood’s “antique district,” Silent Voices is a material culture gallery that features folk art and other mediums created by regional artists from all over Western New York. Please note that Silent Voices Gallery is open Monday through Saturday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Watch a soccer match with some fanatical futbol fans
Mes Que got plenty of attention during the recently completed World Cup international soccer tournament and the large crowds that frequented the bar put this locally owned and operated gathering place on the map. Located at 1420 Hertel Avenue, Mes Que features a special “game day menu” whenever a major soccer match is featured on television. Check your local listings and plan a future get-together with friends for food, drink and plenty of fun in an incredibly festive atmosphere that you have to experience first-hand to truly understand and enjoy.
Light up your life
The Antique Lamp Company and Gift Emporium is an exquisite shop that features antique lighting, lamp restoration services and opportunities to purchase unique antiques and gifts that include estate jewelry, china, lotions, furniture and all sorts of inside and outside décor items. Located at 1213 Hertel Avenue, this shop always has amazing in-store displays and soft music playing in the background to help relax all of their guests.
Satisfy your fascination with film
Known as the jewel of Hertel Avenue, North Park Theater is one of Western New York’s best destinations for movie goers. All sorts of creative uses for this historic venue have been exhibited in recent months, including the popular “Summer Weekend Family Matinees.” Movies are shown every Saturday and Sunday starting at 11:30 a.m. For a list of upcoming movies and the dates and times they will be shown, visit www.northparktheatre.org. Click here to read our article on the opening and restoration of the theater.
Grab a bite and/or a beverage
There are a number of outstanding restaurants and cafes along Hertel, including The Wellington Pub. Located at 1541 Hertel Avenue, this locally owned and operated business has been churning out quality food and beverages with top-notch customer service for over two decades. Perfect for lunch, dinner or a late night snack, their extensive menu has something for everyone. Faithful readers of this website may remember that I named The Wellington Pub as one of Western New York’s Top 10 Places For Chicken Wings With Friends so I obviously suggest ordering up a plate of wings with a few of your closest friends. If you’re in the mood for someplace new, head to Sterling Tap & Wurst or Mac’s on Hertel to give your taste buds a nice treat.
The above question is the most important sentence to learn in any language before going shopping, so feel free to say it after walking into Maria’s Italian Gifts. Located at 1415 Hertel Avenue, this beautiful boutique may remind you of childhood visits to the home of your favorite Italian aunt. With all sorts of exotic imported gift items and a full selection of wedding accessories, a stop into this gift shop is a must if you are seeking anything for that hard-to-buy Italian in your life.
Meet up with the meat man
Any trip I take to North Buffalo always includes some time spent at Johnnie’s Meats, a Hertel Avenue landmark since 1960. Anyone from behind the counter will provide you friendly and usually quite humorous customer service as they fill your order with a smile and a joke or two. Whether you want to purchase cold cuts, cheese, beef, pork, lamb, veal or chicken, Johnnie’s Meats has the market cornered with a large assortment of all of the above. My personal favorites is their homemade Italian sausage, which is made with their own secret blend of imported cheeses. I also highly recommend their homemade German potato salad.
Get Your Shop On
If you’re in the mood to shop uber-local, we’re here to tell you that Elmwood Village isn’t the only place to do it. Don’t get me wrong, some of our favorites are on Elmwood, but it’s time to realize that Hertel Ave has blossomed into a stacked strip of trendy shops. It’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon with friends or look for the perfect outfit for that event you have coming up. Second Chic is a second-hand store where you can get gently used pieces to add to your wardrobe, and trust us when we say these babies are expertly cherry-picked, Modern Nostalgia, Blue Collar, and P.S. Accessories are all great places to go (and score) outfits that everyone else WON’T be wearing. There’s also a bunch of specialty shops up here too, check out our guide to The Best Places to Shop on Hertel and see for yourself.
Makers is one of our favorite places to go on Hertel…and that’s saying something. If you haven’t been yet, Makers is a DIY (and BYOB) workshop that offers different rotating classes every month. We’re talking make your own hanging air plants, envelope clutches, spiked quartz necklaces, modern dream catchers, various bracelets – anything and everything you could ever want to own. The best part of these Pinterest-porn classes is you’re making stuff you’ll actually use, not shove in your closet and forget about. Visit Makers’ website to see this month’s schedule, group chat your friends, grab a bottle of wine, and make a date to head up to Hertel.
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