Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Crave on Hertel Ave: re-styled but searching for an identity.

New decor at Crav(ing) on Hertel Ave. in Buffalo, NY

  Crave:  Eclectic or Pub Grub?

Crave, or Crav(ing) as the logo on the window says, is a new kid on the block on the new hip Hertel Ave in Buffalo.  Here's hoping this will be a welcome addition to the neighborhood after La Dolce Vita.  

Though I was expecting a little healthier more new age, fresh menu, I am very willing to give them a try.  

I liked their decor and color scheme.  Chocolate browns, rich orange and "go BIG or go home" art work make for a splashy contemporary feel (except for the cluster of smalls I photographed above).  The small dining room feels warm and inviting with a comfortable but stylish chocolate faux (?) leather banquette, though the back of the narrow dining room may need more light in the evenings, especially as summer turns to fall and winter in cloudy Buffalo.

Crave is still waiting on their liquor license, but I like the look of their bar with two over sized oil paintings flanking the mirror so I am hoping they secure it soon.
Takeaway message:  I like the decor and if they can match it with a fun ambiance, a mean Martini and a good wine list, I will be back. 
Chopped salad

Chopped salad and Greek wrap 

I had the chopped salad, which though tasty and large, was really an unimaginative mix of half-way chopped romaine lettuce, grape tomatoes, chick peas, some red onion, blue cheese crumbles and a few kalamata olives.  Something tells me that they could really claim ownership of their menu by making their salads more distinctive and including some locally grown fresh produce.  
Takeaway message:  Kostas Greek restaurant is practically across the streetDon't offer a boring chopped salad or half hearted Greek salad when the neighborhood knows where to get a nice basic Greek salad already! 
(Plus I could dash to Dash and pick up an equivalent basic salad to go.)

We also had the Jenny Greek Wrap today.  This was a whole wheat wrap around a weak Greek salad (see comments above) and some grilled chicken.  Again, adequate and palatable but mostly lettuce and nothing exciting.
Takeaway message:  See above!

Make a decision: crave it or lose it!

It seems that they are trying to satisfy a traditional Buffalo desire for a heavy, hearty sandwich, with offerings such as their Fried Chicken Sandwich while still offering a quasi-eclectic selection of salads and Asian or Korean interpretations on a standard sandwich.  Frankly, not sure how this will work out.  I think they need to throw their hat over the wall in one direction or the other.   
Takeaway message: Crave it or lose it!
Crave on Urbanspoon


  1. Nice review. Right on the mark!

  2. Thank you for your kind review. We are happy that you enjoyed our space and ambience. While it's a difficult time in western ny to get local produce, we do plan to introduce as much local product as possible as the bounty becomes available. If it's local that you CRAVE, stop back for lunch and try our locally produced Coppa Meat's Mortadella (made from local farms in Lewiston NY) sandwich. Although the chopped salad is one of my personal cravings, please try our Asparagus Salad with crispy roasted wild mushrooms, shaved parm reggiano and a fresh lemon vinaigrette on your next visit. It's getting great reviews. Check out our website at for more information on our eclectic menu mission and updates on our dinner and brunch menus.

    1. Thank you, Jennifer, for reading my post about Crave! I will definitely stop back and try some of the items you suggest here.