Longing for lunch specials

Buffalo's best afternoon meal deals

The Spectrum

You can't tell how great Buffalo really is without trying some of its best restaurants. Whether it's Japanese food or pizza, Buffalo has a place that can satisfy any craving or budget.

Buffalo is a college town, which means thousands of students, from many backgrounds, look for food both on and off campus. Most of the restaurants serve not only as a place to sit and eat, but also as a place to relax and enjoy oneself.

Fuji Grill

Those who don't want to be far from campus should try Fuji Grill, a Japanese restaurant located on Maple Road. Their appetizers include fried dumplings, crispy tofu, grilled chicken, grilled beef and seafood under $7. Fuji also has seafood and vegetable soup along with green salads for the same price.

If you're looking for a Japanese roll, Fuji's specials are from Mondays to Saturday and range from $8 to $12, including tuna, eel, crab and salmon. It also serves the best sushi and sashimi in Buffalo. The main chef, Tomo Lin, had sushi preparation and training in Japan for four years.

"It is not merely preparing different sushi dishes for different days of the week, but rather creating specialty dishes to provide a unique experience for the customer that is important," restaurant's website states.

Fuji Grill is located at 736 Maple Rd.

The Towne

For that Mediterranean ethnic food craving, try out The Towne.

The Towne is a Mediterranean restaurant that has been open for 30 years. Choices range from a chicken caesar salad to an Angus burger. The wide variety of Greek food is shown on the exotic menu that hosts pasta orzo, open beef and chicken souvlaki. The burgers and sandwiches, such as a roast beef sandwich or a Greek burger deluxe, are only $6 to $8. Salads range from $4 to $9 and all of the pasta dishes are under $10. The kids' menu also has undeniable prices that are all under $5.

The Towne also offers takeout; you can order a meal ahead of time and pick it up. No matter how many people you come with, the staff tends to your needs. The restaurant offers discounts for groups of 10 or more, whether it's a business meeting or a group of people coming in to watch a game.

The Towne is located at 186 Allen Street and is open 24 hours.

La Pizzeria

Another place to look for great food in Buffalo is on Elmwood Avenue. La Pizzeria is open every day for lunch and dinner. The lunch special includes two slices of pizza for $3, a whole cold sub for $5.25 and chicken fingers and fries for $5.75.

Unlike any other pizzeria in Western New York, La Pizzeria has exceptionally flavored crust. Some of its specialty pizzas are white pizza, taco pizza and a seven-cheese pizza. Toppings include sausage, meatballs, chicken, broccoli and more.

La Pizzeria is located at 2285 Elmwood Ave.

Sue's NY Deli

If you want to get away from the meats and try a vegetarian spot, Sue's NY Deli is the right place to go. Claudette and Albert Ramia run Sue's on Main Street and Sue and Wade Badawy run Sue's on Elmwood Avenue.

"We're not fast food, but we'll give you that fast-food feeling," Claudette said.

For about 40 years, Sue's has been known for healthy, vegetarian and non-vegetarian soups, salads and wraps. They use olive oil instead of butter and marinate and bake all of their chicken. Their specials include hot pastrami on rye along with a salad or soup for only $6.45.

The restaurant uses "a blend of traditional family recipes and local favorites with a menu of offerings that can tempt anyone," according to the restaurant's website.

Each location's menu slightly differs.

The locations are at 622 Main Street and 130 S. Elmwood Ave.

Ashker's Juice Bar and Caf?(c)

Another Elmwood favorite is Ashker's Juice Bar and Caf?(c). Breakfast includes bacon, home fries and eggs and its lunch menu consists of paninis and salads. All of the specials are between $7 and $10.

Ashker's is known for its drinks. Its raw juices are made from fresh vegetables and the smoothies are made with frozen fruits. Along with the natural menu, the owner is trying to make Ashker's more than just a caf?(c).

"We want a more community approach," said Dave Alfano, a barista at Ashker's. "There's open mic, and we're getting a chiropractor for holistic healing."

Ashker's Juice Bar and Caf?(c) is located at 1002 Elmwood Ave.

Bertha's Diner

Many people enjoy the casual comfort of a diner. Bertha's Diner is a '50s style diner that captures the taste of Buffalo. It is open seven days a week and its lunch hours are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Some of its lunch specials include the "Big Bertha Burger Platter," the "Marilyn Monroe" and the "Buddy Holly," all different kinds of sandwiches served with a side for under $8.

Customers also have a choice of other specials, such as fried chicken and waffles, steak and eggs and the "Backwoods Benedict." To compliment these meals are soup, chili, fresh fruit, fresh-cut fries and onion rings. Not only does Bertha's have convenient hours and location, but it has a pleasant feel that will leave you feeling satisfied.

Bertha's Diner is located at 1430 Hertel Ave.

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