A Neighbourhood Guide to Buffalo’s Elmwood Village

By: Erin Habes

December 2, 2014

Move over Portland, Buffalo just got trendy. Where other cities have been there done that, Buffalo’s on the rise. Coining the term “Buffalove”, the city is bursting at the seams with rich history, architecture, world-class art galleries, and culture – especially in the hipster area Elmwood Village.

Just steps away from the heart of the city lies the Elmwood Village, the perfect place to enjoy some coffee and conversation at Caffe Aroma or Sweetness 7. This hip neighbourhood is filled with cool indie shops, innovative eateries, galleries and upbeat bars. From a thriving local Co-op to artisanal cheese shop Nickel City Cheese, the Elmwood Village has an organic vibe well worth exploring.

Morning Indulgences

Elmwood Village | Sweetness 7
Sweetness 7 © Rhea Anna/Visit Buffalo Niagara

For the perfect morning pick-me-up, seek out Five Points Bakery, a toast café that serves hearty whole-grain creations. Hunker down with a mug of soulful coffee and an antique platter full of their toasted Power Bread piled with decadent homemade jam and a dollop of artisanal goats cheese that’s made just steps away.

Elmwood Village Shopping

Elmwood Village | Second ChicSecond Chic © Katie Ambrose/Visit Buffalo Niagara

When you think of fashion in Buffalo one might imagine elasticated waistbands and 90s sportswear. But take note: Buffalo does have fashion, and the Elmwood Village has some of the best shopping around. Whether you’re looking for the perfect gift at Neo, sweet accessories and clothing at Anna Grace or a bespoke suit at Bureau, there’s something for everyone. Spoil yourself with some retail therapy at local favourites like Ro, a home décor concept shop that embodies calm living through functional design. Blush is ideal for trendsetters, and if you’re a style-driven thrift minded individual, Second Chic should be right up your alley.

Art and Culture

Elmwood Village | Albright KnoxAlbright Knox © Tom Loonan/Visit Buffalo Niagara

Elmwood Village is home to a smorgasbord of art and culture. Set aside an afternoon at the Albright Knox, and absorb world-renowned works of art from the likes of Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Piet Mondrian. But, you’ll need to wear your socks if you want to explore the perennial visitor favourite “Mirrored Room” by Lucas Samaras. Keep the art fest going and head across the street to the Burchfield Penney, a museum dedicated to the art and artists of Western New York.

Save Us a Seat

Elmwood Village | Blue MonkBlue Monk © Nate Benson/Visit Buffalo Niagara

Restaurants are plentiful in the Elwood Village. If you’re looking for a chilled out scene Blue Monk serves up some of the finest European and American craft brews in the city. Their slogan says it all: “Man does not live by beer alone”, hence the epic menu of pub grub that not only complements good brews, but also brilliantly incorporates them into its food. For the sushi snobs, Kuni’s has a cult following, serving traditional Japanese dishes that will have your taste buds screaming for more. Sato is another local favourite, offering an upscale trendy atmosphere with dishes ranging from ramen to sushi. If Italian is more your style a trip to Aroma is in order, where you can fill up on the delicious farm-to-table fresh antipasti, rustic pizzas and homemade pasta.


Elmwood Village | Vera PizzeriaVera Pizzeria © Joe Cascio/Visit Buffalo Niagara

When the sun goes down head to Vera Pizzeria, where dapper bartenders shake up the best craft cocktails in Buffalo. For music and dancing, head to Allentown for a Brooklyn feel. All within a stone’s throw, you’ll get your groove on at legendary music venue Nietzsches. Then saunter on over to Allen Street Hardware and end up for last call at The Old Pink. Bars close at 4am so be prepared to party until the wee small hours.

Header Image © Dave Pape/Flickr

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Have you been to Elmwood Village? Where’s your favourite place to visit in Buffalo? Let us know in the comments section below.


Erin Habes

Erin is a lecturer in the Buffalo State Fashion and Textile Technology Department, Creative Director for room buffalo, Style Editor for Buffalo Spree Magazine and a Fashion Consultant for Visit Buffalo Niagara. She is also the producer of the successful Buffalo State “Runway” series. Her mission is to spark the conversation about fashion in the city of Buffalo and create collaborations between artists, local designers, businesses, students, and entrepreneurs.

Categories: Our Places