Dinner with a Side of Local Lore

Here in Niagara Falls USA, there are ample places where you can take a bite out of local history, from a 100-year-old Italian bakery to frozen custard that’s been family-made since 1939.

Note: Due to the pandemic, please call to verify hours before heading to a restaurant.

Como Restaurant

Open since 1927 and owned and operated by the Antonacci and Colucci families, this Italian eatery is famous for traditional dishes from south Italy — drool-worthy chicken cacciatore, veal parmigiana and the like — and its house-cut steaks. The original Pine Avenue location is the oldest standing Italian restaurant in Niagara Falls, New York.

Di Camillo Bakery

Tomaso and Addolorata Di Camillo opened their first bakery in Niagara Falls, New York in 1920, baking bread in the basement and delivering it using horse-drawn wagons. These days, third- and fourth-generation family members continue the tradition, offering their famous scaletta bread, cookies, biscotti and delicious Roman-style pizza.

Red Coach Inn

This English Tudor-style inn — modeled after the Bell Inn in Finedon, England — has been in business for almost 100 years. Whether you book a room or just a book a table in the inn’s lovely restaurant, you’ll understand why the Red Coach has been a destination since 1923.

Fortuna’s Restaurant

This family-owned Italian has been a Niagara Falls favorite since 1945, likely thanks to the Fortunas’ “secret sauce” recipe that’s been passed down for generations. Try that sauce spooned over homemade gnocchi, ravioli or eggplant parm.

Anchor Bar

It was back in 1964 at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo that the almighty Buffalo wing was born — or so the story goes! You can still sample the original — deep-fried and doused in a secret spicy sauce — at the Niagara Falls Anchor Bar outpost.

Shamus Restaurant

The original Shamus Restaurant was opened in 1950 in Lockport and has remained one of the finest restaurants in the region ever since, serving upscale pub fare in a charming historic home. Snag a seat at the CopperTop Tap Room, which surely has some stories to tell.

Marketside Restaurant

Since 1939, this family-owned breakfast spot near the Niagara Falls City Market has been dishing up hearty omelets, stacks of pancakes and French toast to hungry regulars. You’ll feel just like a local at this welcoming eatery!

Platter’s Chocolate Factory

Carl Platter began his eponymous chocolate company back in 1938, crafting his famous orange chocolate in the basement of his North Tonawanda home. Now owned by the Urban family, Platter’s recipes are still alive and well, and can be sampled at the Factory’s café and ice cream shop.

Hoover’s Restaurant

Hoover’s Dairy in Sanborn has been operating for 100 years, making and delivering farm-fresh milk, eggs, butter and other dairy products. The family restaurant offers a great opportunity to try the product in the most delicious way possible: an old-fashioned milkshake.

Seasonal: Hibbard’s Original Frozen Custard

Still operating in its original Lewiston location, Hibbard’s Custard is made much in the same way that Harold Hibbard began making it back in 1939 – less air equals a creamier, richer flavor. Open April through October.

Seasonal: Bye’s Popcorn

Bye’s has been serving Olcott’s favorite snack — delicious gourmet popcorn — since 1923. They’re famous for their cashew-caramel popcorn, but the plain buttered-and-salted option is just as craveable. Open April through October.

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