BUFFALO, NEW YORK
After site seeing at Niagara Falls (and visiting tiny Niagara Falls Brewing Company), shuffled off to Buffalo, finding friendly Flying Bison Brewing, whose owners gave me samples via half-gallon jugs (reviewed in Beer Index) for the ride home, July ’05. Also, three disparate brewpubs lined the area surrounding this northerly New York metropolis. I began journey with family in the heart of the city.
In Buffalo’s downtown area within walking distance of Buffalo Bisons minor league stadium and Sabres hockey arena is mighty fine PEARL STREET GRILL & BREWERY (since 1999).
Located inside an old red brick building with yellow columns, maroon trim, and outdoor patio, its prohibition era ambiance is truly impressive. Formerly a dress factory during Buffalo’s crime-addled heyday, its spacious interior offered grandiose bar with oversized oak-stained mantle, separate rear dining area near brew tanks, banquet rooms, and low-ceilinged basement bar (with billiards, video games, and jukebox).
Second floor added a wraparound patio while third and fourth floor decks provided further accommodations.
Astoundingly diversified beer selection included tangy coriander-clove-banana-sweetened efficiency Waterfront Wheat, estery grape-dabbed raisin-fig-soured Black Rock Bock, malleable dry-husked orange-sweetened mango-pineapple-passion-fruited alt bier Trainwreck Amber Ale, and dry coffee-roasted chocolate-seeded cherry-oaken Irish-styled Canal Sreet Stout. Similar in taste were musty cereal-grained wheat-fruited Fuggle-hopped Lake Effect IPA and silky-hopped stone-fruited wheat-straw American Beauty Pale Ale. The diverse selection turns over quickly so these are only a mere sampling of their many craft beers.