Hutch’s Restaurant has been serving fine cuisine to folks in Buffalo for over 25 years. They call it “an American take on the French Bistro”. Named for chef/owner Mark Hutchinson it closed a year ago for a renovation that was to be in stages but instead was done all at once while the restaurant was closed 144 days for Covid. They were able to double the capacity of the old Floristry building to accommodate 100 socially distanced diners (probably 175 post-Covid) and expand outdoor seating to 20 people. Today the large restaurant has several rooms with brick walls, carpeting, low lighting, loud music, art on the walls, votive candles on the tables and a large window looking into the kitchen where you could easily spot Hutchinson. Sound panels on the ceiling helped with the noise level cause it was filled to capacity and buzzing with people celebrating an occasion or closing a business deal. In addition to the menu they had a large list of daily specials. Service was slow but in their defense many restaurant workers have not returned to work, but this would be a good job to land in that line of work.
They brought around a bread basket filled with slices of baguette and pieces of tomato and rosemary topped focaccia. Both were nicely fresh and tasted good and fun to enjoy with a well made cocktail.
Crispy softshell crab with Cajun remoulade sauce on a green salad was on the special menu. The server assured us that the crabs were fresh, not frozen and he was right. It was a good sized crab fried to a perfect crisp with the body meat still nicely moist. The salad was under one part so it didn’t damage the crisp exterior and fresh tomato chunks were on either side of the greens. The sauce was very good tasting but covered the wonderful flavor of the crab but it was good to mix with the greens. This is one of my favorite dishes when done right and this one qualified all around. It was perfect.
We both ordered the New York Strip steak off the regular menu. It is a 14 oz. piece grilled and served with thick cut onion rings, mashed potatoes and mixed vegetables. The juicy beef was cooked just as requested and well seasoned. The mashed potatoes were okay as were the green beans and red pepper but the onion rings were quite tasty with a crisp coating and thick slice of onion in each. But the star on the plate was the prime beef cooked with a perfect char.
For dessert we split the Almond Lace Cookie Cup filled with whipped cream and fresh fruit on more whipped cream and caramel sauce. The fruit was raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and mango. The server called this a signature dish and said it’s always on the menu. I can see why. The cookie crust was thin and tasty and there was a ton of rich whipped cream along with flavorful fruit. It was lovely.