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Andriaccio’s North

If you ever intend on opening an Italian restaurant in North Buffalo, then you better be prepared to take on some serious competition. After all, some of the best Italian restaurants have set up shop in and around Hertel, and more are always on the way. When I first heard that Andriaccio’s North was opening in the former Filippo’s location, I was happy to see the space being occupied, but at the same time I wondered if the owners could cut the mustard in the city’s Land of Italian. After speaking to Co-owner Debbie Andriaccio for just a couple of minutes, not only was I assured that the restaurant had the right formula for success, I began to count down the days before I could eat there.

The Andriaccio family has been in the WNY restaurant business longer than just about any other family. When it comes to Italian food, the Andriaccio’s have opened it, prepared it, served it and pretty much lived the life. So what would it take to get the family to open another restaurant in North Buffalo? “There aren’t enough nice, family-friendly places in North Buffalo…,” Debbie told me. “Places where you can get a great meal at a decent price… places where you can treat the entire family to lunch or dinner without breaking the bank? At the same time, we’re all about the presentation. It’s still going to look great, with linen table cloths. Just because it’s a family restaurant doesn’t mean that you can’t have a nice restaurant. Our goal is to get people to stop loading into their cars and heading out to the Olive Garden for a cheap meal. Sundays will be a day dedicated the family. We’re calling it Family Day – mom and dad can get a full meal (with soda) for $12 each and kids eat for $6 each.”

Don’t think that the food and atmosphere will take it on the chin because Andriaccio’s caters to families. At night the restaurant will transform into a romantic eatery and night spot. “We’ve added a wall between the dining room and the bar,” Debbie stated. “We wanted to put our own stamp on the place. There’s a new bar top, new woodwork, new bathrooms… the ladies’ room is my pride and joy. My husband calls it The Lounge. There is a big secret recessed space in part of the wall covered by a curtain. We painted the inside with blackboard paint and added a box of chalk. Already people are adding fun notes and we’re not even open yet… it’s part of creating a buzz. The long hallway to the bathroom is filled with all sorts of interesting plaques with quotes that customers bring back to the table for discussion – these are the fun elements that create ‘word of mouth’ about a restaurant.”

I have a feeling that the real buzz will be generated when customers try the food that Debbie describes as, “Traditional and creative with a twist. We have an eggplant parm with wafer thin sheets of pasta in-between the eggplant… that’s a twist. Joe’ stuffed hot peppers are a must-try as is the Pork Giuseppe (pork tenderloin pounded and seasoned with bread crumbs, garlic, and sauteed in olive oil). Our head chef, Paula Danolowicz has created Paula’s Shrimp in its Basket (shrimp wrapped in angel hair pasta, deep fried, made with sun dried tomato oil and fresh house made ricotta cheese). Everything is made in-house… our pasta, our bread, our sausage… meatballs… everything. We’ll have a full bar and a 30-seat patio out in front. There’s also parking for 50 cars on the side of the building. We’re going to add flower boxes, Victorian lanterns and evergreens to enhance the appearance of the building.”

The Andriaccio’s are very excited to be opening on Hertel. Joe Andriaccio (Debbie’s husband and partner) grew up in Buffalo and the couple now lives one mile away from the restaurant. It’s slated to be a true family operation with mom and dad and the kids running the show. They see North Buffalo as a friendly, walkable place with plenty of friends and neighbors who will soon become loyal patrons of the business. “When we saw this location open up, we knew that this was the perfect place for us,” Debbie told me. “Our food speaks for ourselves and we’re here to contribute our part to this neighborhood that we love.”

Andriaccio’s North will be open on April 20th, serving lunch and dinner with late night bar crowd.

Andriaccio’s North
1264 Hertel Avenue
Buffalo NY

Written by Sarah Maurer

Sarah Maurer

I moved to Buffalo to attend Canisius College in 2007 and began writing for Buffalo Rising as a journalism intern in 2010. Working with Newell and meeting numerous entrepreneurs, activists and everyday folks who were working to make their city better made a huge impact on my decision to stay here. After witnessing all the positive development and grassroots initiatives happening in neighborhoods throughout the city, I was inspired to pursue a term of service in AmeriCorps and a career in Buffalo's non-profit sector. I currently work in the housing department at the Lt. Col. Matt Urban Human Services Center of WNY and am excited to be a part of their ongoing efforts to revitalize the Broadway Fillmore neighborhood. I also volunteer as the project coordinator for Artfarms Buffalo. I continue to write for Buffalo Rising because I love having the opportunity to stay connected to those working toward positive changes for the Queen City.

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