Signs are up at 770 Elmwood Avenue, broadcasting the pending arrival of Charlie the Butcher. Charlie the Butcher is widely known as Buffalo’s First Family of Meat, and an establishment that prides itself on being on a first name basis with all of its customers.
There are not many people who don’t know who Charlie is, whether they frequent the butcher/restaurateur or not. Charlie Roesch is the celebrity foodie behind Charlie the Butcher, but the history of the Roesch family (as butchers) goes back to 1914, when Charles E (Grandpa Charlie) founded the Charles E. Roesch and Company meat business at The Broadway Market, where it would thrive for three generations. Interestingly, Grandpa Charlie also served as Mayor of Buffalo from 1930 to 1934, and was the first mayor to occupy the seat in the brand new City Hall building.
It was only when Charlie Roesch introduced himself as Charlie the Butcher at a 1984 trade show (with white butcher coat and bump cap), that the now legendary beef on weck sandwich began to take on a new meaning in Buffalo. Rumor has it that the sandwich was invented in Buffalo in the 1800s by a waterfront bar owner (see history of Charlie the Butcher). The kummelweck roll itself was the creation of a German baker named William Wahr, who was living in Buffalo at the time (learn more).
Today Charlie the Butchers can be found at select supermarket locations, the Ellicott Square Building, Coco-Cola Field, and even NOCO Express locations. Now, the next prime site will be on Elmwood Avenue, at the heart of the Elmwood Strip, much to the happiness of beef on weck lovers far and wide.
Charlie the Butcher | 770 Elmwood Avenue | Buffalo NY | See menu