As I cross the street of Delaware Avenue, there is an element of posh sophistication. White washed brick, large green vegetation in black pillar pots flank each side of a grand glass door, and walls of windows showcase the exotic decor inside. One could almost forget that Patina 250 is actually located inside the Westin Hotel in the newly renovated
Delaware North building–a reminder of the cultural turn-around that the city has seen in the last two years. However, this is not your typical hotel restaurant. A unique wood burning oven, and a bar/lounge area featuring a mural painted by local artist Fotini Galanes, are just some of the jaw dropping scenes to take in.
A formal open dining area lends patrons a view of the open, and sometimes entertaining kitchen, where Chef Homer Ford works his magic. Ford spent eight years in New York City working at some of the best restaurants, like that of Blue Water Grill.
Walk away from the formal dining area and step into a snazzy, cozy bar area with ample lounge seating, plush sofas, and hand carved wood tables. This is my favorite area, and where I most often sit, whether it’s to dine with my lovely husband or tuck into a quiet sofa, heavily engrossed in writing.
Let’s start with some of their more unusual dishes (foods like beets, salmon belly, fennel). The lunch menu is simple but rather healthy (for which I love). I started with a Beet trilogy salad comprised of cloumage ricotta, pickled dragon carrots, radishes, pumpernickel croutons ($11.00). Next was what is affectionately referred to as the Poke Bowl: salmon belly, lemongrass broth, puffed rice, radish, pickled cucumber, macadamia nut ($15.00). I washed this down with a perfectly smooth demi cup of espresso. The espresso was superb; caffeine rich with subtle notes of chocolate. This was a working lunch–literally. I sat, laptop in front of me, typing ferociously on an article for the magazine I am the associate publisher of (Buffalo Healthy Living). Then it was on to working on my book. I finally called it quits when I saw rank-and-file politicians pouring into the bar for happy hour and realized how long I had been there!
The next time I visited Patina 250 was with my husband for dinner. Each of our dishes came with homemade hand carved fries, yes I literally mean hand carved fries.
For dinner I had the mussel pot with fennel, shallots, white wine, garlic purée, crostini ($15.00), and the grilled watermelon panzanella: heirloom tomatoes, ricotta salata, watercress, croutons, basil oil ($14.00). My husband had the crispy fried chicken with tarragon-mustard aioli ($26.00).
What i like so much about Patina is the way it seamlessly fits into the Buffalo vibe, yet with a bit of panache. It exudes European decor and atmosphere, but isn’t overdone. While the food is a bit pricey for the amount you get, the drink list more than makes up for it. The bar is stunning, and the beautiful inverted triangular glass lighting offers ambiance and relaxation (very necessary when you are sipping a glass of prosecco).
I highly recommend checking out Patina 250.