Jim's Steakout serves up a classic lineup of philly cheesesteaks, hoagies, and chicken fingers, silencing rumbling stomachs from high noon to high moon with locations throughout western New York.
From lunchtime until as late as 2 a.m. or 5 a.m., each of Jim's outposts fills stingers—or hot subs—with steak and cheese, bacon, and combinations of italian sausage and other meats. Hoagies meet nearly every appetite with three sizes, ranging from a lunch-appropriate four-inch Kaiser roll to an Italian roll that reaches an entire foot long. Whichever size diners choose, they can get their roll stuffed with chicken, provolone, and sautéed spinach—known as the chicken-in-the-grass hoagie—or any number of other hot or cold ingredients. The menu also rolls out a red carpet for creative sides such as fries smothered in chopped steak and cheese, stuffed banana peppers, and fried mac 'n' cheese bites. To sweeten each classic meal, the kitchen fries up funnel cakes to order.
Foot-high flames erupt from a tower of sliced onions, and a collective “oooooh” leaves the lips of the patrons gathered around the table fitted with a hibachi grill. Chicken, shrimp, scallops, lobster tail, filets mignon, and veggies cook right before diners' eyes before a skilled Tokyo II hibachi chef doles out each browned piece to awaiting plates. In addition to dazzling displays of hibachi meals, the eatery houses a team of talented sushi chefs who work wonders with knives, thinly slicing yellowtail and salmon and whittling plates from the trunk of an oak tree. The staff has given rolls such creative names as Black Betty, White Lilly, and Black Dragon, and the entrees it prepares includes the May Flower, a spread of 18 sushi pieces, plus a spicy tuna and tiger roll. A handful of Thai dishes—pad thai, curry, and coconut-mushroom soup—rounds out the extensive selection of edibles.
Sunlight floods through rustic stained-glass windows onto the hardwood bar and tabletops of The Oakk Room's historic dining room, which was originally an automobile shop before it was converted to a pub in the late 1980s. Surrounded by walls laden with taxidermy pieces and an antique wooden horse trained to stand completely still, servers bring forth plates of jerk chicken and freshly baked cornbread, and bartenders shake up a menu of 17 different specialty cocktails. The restaurant slakes thirst on Wednesday with $4 martini specials and throws weekly Friday fish-frying events.
The staff at Chateau Buffalo strives to support local farmers, and they do so by using locally produced grapes in their red and white wines. They also produce craft ciders that come sparkling, cold, or warm. Those unsure of what they'd like to drink will find the Chateau's tastings, like a hair tie made of Twizzlers, are both tasty and helpful.
At Laughlin's Hearty Bistro, chefs concoct a menu of rustic, bistro-style fare that spotlights quality cuts of beef, fresh fish, and meaty sandwiches paired with hand-cut fries. Steak- and seafood-laden plates make their way to the cozy dining room, where warm lamplight illuminates dark-wood tables and exposed-brick walls. A mezzanine populated with plush, black leather easy chairs overlooks a copper-topped bar. Here, friendly bartenders and repurposed paint shakers mix a mean martini, and the bar's glassware also brims with wine and beer.
Buffalo Chophouse serves aged prime steaks in an atmosphere surrounded by a sumptuous turn-of-the century décor. Diners can begin with a dish of steamed middleneck clams ($12.50), simmered in white wine and garnished with parsley, and then move on to a carnivorous main course such as the tender 32-ounce bone-in ribeye ($48) or the steamed Alaskan king crab legs ($46). Regardless of what's featured on the plate, dining experiences are inevitably enhanced by the chophouse's plush wraparound seating, low-key lighting, and stoic, standalone piano that’s just begging for a traditional tickling.