Happy Trails on the West Side – Buffalo Rising



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After a lot of anticipation, while waiting for the dedicated bike paths on Niagara Street to come true, I finally had the chance to take a ride.

I started my short but gentle hike in Niagara and West Ferry, cycling north to Forest Avenue. Along the way, I came across a lot of new trees, tactical rain gardens, and even new businesses that sprouted up. I must say that the ride was very pleasant. After all, how often (in Buffalo) are we lucky enough to cycle along super smooth dedicated bike paths.

As a general rule, biking around Buffalo is not considered a “smooth ride” at all. Between the lack of cycle paths and the potholes, it’s no wonder there aren’t more cyclists on the roads. Even the (new) infrastructure on Niagara Street – between City Hall and the Peace Bridge is a joke. But not from the Peace Bridge to Forest Avenue… this section is nothing more than fluid navigation.

The only problem I have with this is motorists who have no idea what it means to ‘give in’ to cyclists as they turn into driveways and parking lots. I almost got cut when a driver cut me aimlessly, as she was turning Tim Hortons – even though there are an abundance of neon yellow ‘rendezvous’ signs, motorists ignore the rules. the road when it comes to knowing how to navigate (interact with) the dedicated cycle paths. That said, if you find your way along Niagara Street on a bicycle, stay alert. It’s easy to feel invulnerable in protected lanes, but the dangers of the road are always plentiful.

Buffalo well done

After testing the new bike lane, I decided to head home via Connecticut Street, to see if any of my new favorite restaurants were open. And it was! I became a huge fan of Mister Sizzle, not only because it’s in my neighborhood, but because I feel like the owners – Casey and Chris Casas – ticked all the boxes, making this a quintessential Buffalo restaurant. For me, I think the advent of Mister Sizzle’s is akin to the arrival of Ted’s Hot Dogs at the time. It has all the ingredients Buffalonians love, and more. Unlike Ted, however, Mister Sizzle has an exceptional atmosphere. It’s not just a place to line up for a good burger, before sitting down with a platter of food to eat. Mister Sizzle’s is fun and upbeat, and the food and drink matches the atmosphere.

Troy Cloutier is a genius when it comes to mezcal drinks – don’t let him spin the tunes

For starters, the bartenders are “where it goes” at Mister Sizzles. They know their stuff. And the trick? The drinks are killer. I’m a big fan of mezcal drinks and alcoholic milkshakes (yeah, I said that) – mostly the pain reliever. I never thought I would want a “milkshake and vegetable burger” combo (impossible burger), Mister Sizzle style. And I am not alone. I still have to go to the restaurant and do not see a line of people at the counter. This place became an overnight sensation in Buffalo. Think of the old school restaurant where you meet burgers. And guess what? It is not rocket science. It’s super family friendly (kids love it, and their parents love it too), there are top notch burgers and fries (to eat at the bar, at a table or take out), the music is upbeat, the bartenders know their s * #t, service is fast and it’s a place to ‘see and be seen’. You are guaranteed to meet people you know.

Company B Tasting Room & Market – I must love these historic buildings which are actually taken care of and occupied by commercial tenants

This week I have the wind comes in my sails again, thanks to a few West Side delicacies that I am on the moon about. I can’t believe I can finally cycle safely from LaSalle Park to Scajaquada Creek along Niagara Street. Dedicated cycle paths are a dream come true for cyclists. Now, if we could have more east-west cycle paths, that would also be a miracle. And the forest? Carry? Delavan? Where is the connectivity? Perhaps now, as more cyclists use Niagara Street and the Jesse Kregal Trail along Scajaquada Creek, the City will become more urgent to create a city where the culture of cycling is not only throw a bone for cyclists, it is actually a way of life for the locals.

Another business is popping up on Niagara Street – What’s Pop-In Gourmet Popcorn recently moved from West Ferry to Niagara Street. Maybe it’s because West Ferry is a mess and Niagara Street now has a bright future?

When I think of Buffalo, I try to think of the things that make me happy. Over the past few days, I have found happiness in the new dedicated bike lanes on Niagara Street, and sensational food and drink at Mister Sizzle. Sometimes it all revolves around the simple pleasures of life – a punch in this case – that signals me that my city (our city) is on the right track.

mister sizzles | 346 Connecticut St, Buffalo, NY 14213 | (716) 919-4949 | Facebook


Main Image: Wheelworks Campus is now open on Niagara Street

queen's eyes

Newell Nussbaumer is ‘queenseyes’ – Eyes of the Queen City and founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder of the Powder Keg Festival which built the largest ice maze in the world (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurious! winter party. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator of the Saturday Craft Market (SAM) in Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of retro and vintage market The Peddler on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Kick off Witches’ Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and the Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer | [email protected]

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