If I had to voice one complaint about Vito’s Gourmet Deli in Downtown Buffalo, it would have to be the large crowds that gather at lunchtime. Sometimes it can be hard to find a seat. Of course this is not a bad problem for the restaurant, just for the people who have to take their lunches back to their offices. After all, half the fun of going to Vito’s is the action – the tons of people that search out Fountain Plaza for the sights, the atmosphere and the food. Unfortunately the patio cafe tables and chairs are not yet out for the season. Vito’s is delicious food served up iin an amazing urban setting… what’s not to like other than the lack of seating at rush hour?
I still run across people on a regular basis who don’t even realize that Vito’s reopened on Main Street after closing its original location at the corner of Elmwood and Chippewa (I miss that place to this day). In the end, the move appears to have been a blessing, because Vito’s must be doing big business in the Key Center judging by the traffic. I’m a big fan of their tuna fish sandwich served with roasted red pepper mayo mixed in. It’s got a bite to it. I also love the multi-grain bread – the sandwich alone keeps me coming back. But it’s the whole package that makes Vito’s so special.
Fountain Plaza is an attraction that draws people from all over. The tranquility of the serene reflecting pool is balanced by the lively fountain – just close your eyes and imagine that a gigantic waterfall is nearby. There’s nothing like this scene anywhere else in the city, and that’s one of the reasons that Vito’s is so popular. These are the settings that need to be recreated in districts lacking vibrancy and soul. Where are the vacant lots in the city that have enough infrastructure to justify and maintain another setting like this? Water and art attract people. People attract more people. People also attract businesses, which in turn attracts more people.
Fountain Plaza was done right. It even offers skating in the wintertime. And guess what? Visitors have to walk to it! We walked from the 700-block to eat lunch there, and we enjoyed all of the scenery along the way. It’s also along the Metro Rail route. If I had suggestion for Fountain Plaza, it is that there are only five flags hanging on the fifty flag poles that surround the reflecting pool. Can you imagine if all of the poles were flying flags? It would be very dramatic. Hoepfully that can happen someday.
40 Fountain Plaza,