Wednesday, February 27, 2013


On Friday, March 1st, the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County is asking all Western New Yorkers to support their favorite not-for-profits! 

This 24 hour online fundraiser will help support 182 local organizations. With 182 organizations to choose from, I found it hard to decide who to donate to. To help me decide, I put out a challenge to my Twitter followers yesterday and said that the first three who tweeted at me, I'd make a donation. 

The organizations I will be supporting on Friday are: Hospice Buffalo, Veterans One-Stop Center of Western New York and the Belle Centre. In addition, the organization I work for, Deaf Adult Services will also receive a donation from me. 

I would like to put a challenge, a "CALL TO ACTION", to all my readers...consider making at least ONE donation, whatever amount you can afford, to one of these deserving organizations. After you make a donation, tweet me @lovinonbuffalo OR post on Lovin' On Buffalo's Facebook page and you will be entered to win one of THREE Buffalo themed prizes!!!

It only takes a few minutes to input your information on the website and your donation will directly support Western New York and the people who live here. 

Let's see how much money Lovin' On Buffalo readers can generate for the Western New York community. I know we can help make a difference!!!

Here is the general website for Friday's "Spring It On": 

REMEMBER, donations are only being accepted on Friday, March 1st from 12:00am - 11:59pm. 

We have 24 hours WNY, let's make it count!!!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Scarlet Restaurant & Bar in Buffalo

For Christmas, I received a handful of Simply Certificates which are gift certificates that can be used at participating restaurants, spas, shops, etc...There were around 100 participating businesses and as I scrolled through the list online, I was excited to realize there weren’t that many restaurants on the list that I had NOT tried before. My intention with using them was to explore some new places and the first spot we checked out was Scarlet Restaurant & Bar. They are located downtown at 26 Virginia Place, tucked away on a great street for local Buffalo food. Just a few steps away from Fat Bob’s Smokehouse and Mother’s, I was excited to see if Scarlet was as good.

We went there before a Sabres game, and were the "early" crowd. In fact, we were the first patrons on that Thursday evening, getting there right when they opened the doors at 5:00pm. We remained the only patrons for most of our meal, but we enjoyed the “special attention”. Our waitress offered many suggestions from the menu and was a huge help when ordering, since I had a hard time picking what to get. 

In the end, we ordered a lot of food: the Cajun scallops as an appetizer, the warm goat cheese salad, and then an entrée each. For my entrée, I chose the Chicken Parm Stack and my boyfriend went with the Prosciutto wrapped chicken. 

Our meal started off great. We were brought a loaf of bread...not a piece of bread, or a small loaf, but a pretty decent sized loaf for the two of us. With the bread came a few different kinds of butter and they were all absolutely delicious. 

Our Cajun scallops (stuffed with andouille sausage and topped with a cajun cream sauce) came out first. They were $11, and while a little pricey for an appetizer, they were well worth it. They were probably my favorite thing from the meal. The scallops were cooked perfectly. I was worried the sauce would be too spicy for me, but our waitress assured me they weren't. They did have a little kick to them, but suited my taste buds just fine. 

Our salad came out with the scallops and while the salad (goat cheese fritters & mixed field greens) was absolutely delicious, it was pricey for what we received, $9.50 for a small plate. The goat cheese balls were absolutely to die for though, and the pecan vinaigrette was tasty. If you were just getting a salad for dinner, this wouldn't be enough for a meal. It was really good, just not the best "bang for your buck". 

When our entrees came out, I'm not going to lie, I was already starting to get full. The loaf of bread, scallops and salad could have probably been enough, but on we went. My chicken parm stack ($18.00) was gigantic. I ended up taking half of it home and had it for a meal and a half the next day too! The chicken was breaded and cooked well and the fresh mozzarella cheese complemented the chicken perfectly. The roasted plum tomato sauce had great flavor and it was smothered in a cardinale cream.  All the flavors worked well together and I thought it took a traditional dish of chicken parm to the next level. 

My boyfriend's Prosciutto wrapped chicken ($20.00) was stuffed with boursin cheese and was served over a creamy polenta with a smoky tomato fume. The prosciutto he was served was a very thick piece around the chicken making it hard to cut and chew through. The chicken itself was cooked well and the tomato fume was tasty. We are both very tough critics of polenta (after having a few amazing polenta meals at Blue Monk & Black Rock Kitchen & Bar), but we really did enjoy this polenta. 

Chicken Parm Stack

Prosciutto wrapped chicken

The restaurant itself has a very comfortable feel to it. It was once a carriage house that had been restored and showcases brick walls and dark colors. There are two floors, with limited seating downstairs. They have a really nice bar as well with some fun cocktails and drinks to choose from. 

Additional menu items include grilled pizzas ($8 - $12), burgers and other higher end entrees ranging from $17 - $48 (lobster tail). If price was not a factor, nearly everything on the menu would be something I would consider trying. 

My boyfriend and I had a blast checking out Scarlet, it was actually our Valentine's Day dinner (a week early), and it is the perfect spot to bring a date. The dark/dim lights left a comfortable and romantic feel and while we didn't see the restaurant very packed, I am sure by the time we were in our seats at the Sabres game it was full. They are open Tuesday - Saturday at 5:00pm. They close at 10:00pm on Tuesday - Thursday and at 12:00am on Friday and Saturday. 

Scarlet hit the mark, and made Virginia Place an even more attractive spot in Buffalo for us! Check them out next time you are in the area! 

For more reviews on Scarlet Restaurant & Bar check out: 
Scarlet on Urbanspoon

Friday, February 22, 2013

Still Lovin' On Buffalo...

The end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013 have brought about a handful of changes and new endeavors in my life. In January, I began a new full-time position as the Development & Community Relations Coordinator with Deaf Adult Services. I am continuing to stay on at St. Mary’s School for the Deaf, part-time as their Public Relations Coordinator. I have also been teaching ZUMBA classes two evenings a week.

If that wasn’t enough, I began training to become a docent (tour guide) in Buffalo in January through Buffalo Tours. My Saturday mornings have been spent expanding my knowledge on Buffalo and Western New York, and getting the chance to tour some historic places in Buffalo. In early March, my docent training will take me to my favorite building in Buffalo, the Richardson Olmstead Complex. I can’t even begin to tell you how thrilled and excited I am to be able to share my love of this Buffalo gem with fellow Western New Yorkers and visitors to the area.

With all these exciting changes in my life, I haven’t been able to keep up with Lovin’ On Buffalo as much as I had hoped. I have many interviews saved up, and many posts that I need to get out there, so I have reinvested myself in this website, and the mission of getting out the stories of WNY small business, people, restaurants and more.

Starting next week, you will regularly see new posts. For now, stories will be posted on Tuesdays and Fridays each week. I am hoping to be able to get more than two up a week, but that is a great starting point for 2013.

2012 was a special year for Lovin’ On Buffalo. I was able to help many deserving organizations through my “12 Missions in ‘12” campaign, and am going to continue to help those and other organizations in the coming year.

I was thrilled to receive some local press, and an Artvoice “Best of Buffalo” nomination for my Twitter feed linked to Lovin’ On Buffalo.

Now that I am adjusted to the changes that have been taking place in my life, I am ready to hit the ground running with Lovin’ On Buffalo again.

I look forward to sharing my love for Buffalo with all of you the rest of this year. As always, if you have a story about a local person, organization or business in WNY that deserves some free PR, please contact me!

Thanks to all of you for your support! Buffalo truly is the “City of Good Neighbors!”