Taps: 6 / Bottles: 30
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 7 | Reviews: 7
Reviews by cratez:
4.6/5 rDev +0.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 5 | $$$
The typical fine dining restaurant devotes an enormous amount of attention to selecting top-shelf wines that pair well with their cuisine, while neglecting to offer even a single decent beer on the menu. Shango is no such place. This understated bistro is the perfect spot for a romantic meal with your better half, and unlike every other eatery you can actually score a solid micro brew to enjoy with dinner.
Atmosphere is upscale casual with a medium-sized bar and several white table cloth booths in the dining area. Our server was impeccable - she gave us plenty of time to order, described all of the beers on tap, and was very efficient in bringing our food and drinks to the table.
Beer selection is smaller than the city's two best beer bars - Blue Monk and Cole's - but the focus on craft options is evident. At the time of our visit, Lagunitas A Little Sumpin' Wild Ale was on the bottle list and Southern Tier Un*Earthly, Brooklyn Main Engine Start, and Great Lakes The Doppelrock were on draught. I went with the latter two beers while my girlfriend ordered a sauvignon blanc that completely blew her away. Other bottles (which total 30 or so) included Green Flash West Coast IPA, Brooklyn Pennant Pale Ale '55, and Smuttynose Robust Porter.
The food is authentic New Orleans fare, something my girl and I had never tried before coming here. We shared the chicken and andouille sausage gumbo, creole bouillabaisse, and mac and cheese penne. Everything was incredibly delicious and the gumbo nicely complemented the fruity, floral, and spicy qualities of my Belgian-style pale ale.
Overall, Shango is one of the best restaurants that I've across since becoming a beer geek. Between the world class cuisine, outstanding bottles and taps, extensive wine list, thoughtful service, and relaxing ambience, it's got everything that I look for in a place to dine out. Next time you're in Buffalo, drop in here for a meal and some drinks - you won't be disappointed.
04-19-2011 19:29:02 | More by cratez
More User Reviews:
4.25/5 rDev -7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
I was able to score a $10 coupon out of a deck of cards... although I didn't really need any incentive to go from the good things I'd already heard.
Walking up to the place (and having to park on Heath St.), I was a little put-off by the scummy South Campus bar scene that surrounds the restaurant (too many bad memories). However, once inside, my opinion changed quickly. The place was chic and classy with a vibe that screamed..."you should have made a reservation you idiot!"
We waited 25 minutes for a table for 2 and were therefore quite intimate with the bar scene until then.
The place has 6-7 well thought taps including the companion, leviathan barley wine, blackout stout, aviator red, and a golden ale I wasn't actually familiar with. Their bottle list included some reasonably priced imports, including $21, 750mL bottles of Duvel Tripel hop and $6.5, 12oz bottles of fin du monde/maudite.
After being seated, we were given a mixed olive/pickled veggies bowl, artisan breads, and some dipping oil. We also ordered the fried calamari...which was outstanding and not overcooked in the least. My entree was the creole Bouillabaisse and my companion ordered the buckwheat crepe stuffed with root veggies (which included an array of unexpected and tasty roots).
Both were quite delicious and consumed in their entirety.
Disclaimer: This wasn't a perfect evening. I ended up vomiting later that evening...and unfortunately have to blame the dinner for this food-poisoning tragedy. :(
Still, it's an outstanding place that I'll return to in the future.
02-11-2012 22:46:19 | More by ThePorterSorter
4.88/5 rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$$
First of all, OMG. Shango is my favorite restaurant in all of the Buffalo area. Now I will commence the panegyric:
Shango's atmosphere achieves the perfect balance between formal and casual. While you don't want to be in shorts and sneakers, you don't feel out of place in a polo and jeans. The decor is a mix of modern with old school New Orleans/southern. There is a strong blues/jazz theme. The bar is spacious and the tables are well placed.
Everything at Shango is A+ in quality. From the bread to the coffee to the beer to the amazing food, it's all extremely well done.
The service is also exceptional. The waitstaff is actually personable and you can tell that the owners/managers emphasize proper treatment of their customers. While not all beer connoisseur, they are all willing to let you sample before you commit. Nice always is better than rude in my book.
Shango only has a limited number of taps BUT they do a wonderful job of bringing in new and often rare beers. While finding some of the more common Dogfish Head offerings at other places around town is fairly easy, Shango will carry some of the more obscure beers. While it's clear beer is not the primary focus here, there is definitely a lot of thought put into what kegs are ordered. Their bottle selection, which stays pretty much the same, is also solid.
Food. Oh my god. Shango's food is really to die for. The cuisine is based on Louisiana/New Orleans. Let me just say you will not get better food in Buffalo, no matter what cuisine. Dinner is a bit expensive but when you are eating slow braised pork belly that melts in your mouth followed by the best fried chicken north of the Mason/Dixon, you really don't mind. My recommendation: go for brunch. Less expensive but equally as delicious (maybe even more so).
Top notch restaurant with a thoughtful, interesting selection of craft beer. Go.
10-12-2011 16:44:27 | More by amc2341
4.7/5 rDev +2.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$
Had dinner and drinks here last night and just like all of the previous reviews, we had a wonderful time.
Arrived at around 5:15 and sat at the bar for about half and hour before heading to our table. Shango has an extensive wine list but the wife and I were there for some beer and we were not disappointed. They had 6 beers on tap: Ithaca Exclesior 13, Southern Tier's Unearhtly, Oskar Blues Dale's Pale Ale, Wolavers Alta Gracia Coffee Porter, Dogfish Palo Santo and Flying Bison's Rusty Chain. They also had a nice bottle list that included several belgian offerings (Orval, Duvel, Wetmaalle), some german and english beers and a some nice selections from US (Ommegang, North Coast, Rogue, Lagunitas & Dogfish among others).
I had an Unearhtly and a Palo Santo and my wife has the Excelsior 13 and a Hennepin; all were fresh, served in proper glassware, and delicious.
Once we sat down we were prompted greeted by our server. As we had been purusing the menu at while at the bar we didn't need much time to order. For starters I had a cup of their Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo and wife had the Avocado Spring Rolls. Both were excellent. For dinner I had the Creole Meatloaf and she got the Blackened Steak Po-Boy. Although we did not finish our meals (aps and pre-dinner beer tends to fill you up) it was not because of the quality of the food. Both of our meals were teriffic.
Overall I would highly recommend Shango to anyone who enjoys good beer (or wine), excellent cajun-style food and promt and friendly serivce. In fact there is relaly nothing bad that I can say about the place other than it is located next door to Third Base so sitting outside might not be the most enjoyable experience.
We will definitely go back soon.
04-24-2011 15:17:04 | More by wieserjd
4.53/5 rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
Atmosphere: Straight-up sensual New Orleans flair, complete with earth-toned walls and floors, mardi-gras beads on the taps, and candle-lit tables and bathrooms. Has been a runner up for the most romantic restaurant in Buffalo, and it's easy to see why. Small lounge area in the front of the restaurant (near the bar) is converted into a jazz bandstand on weekends. Outdoor patio with a view of the University Height area. Crowd is generally well-dressed 30-40s type. Complaints? The seats at tables are essentially high-backed wooden church pews, which can get somewhat uncomfortable, but seating at the bar is no problem. Generally a small place, but not really cramped. As previous commenters have stated, outside atmosphere is right across the street from U at Buffalo and next to a pair of dive bars, so expect an intoxicated student body meandering on the street on weekends.
Quality: Have never had a non-fresh beer from this establishment in the roughly 10 times I've gone. They're constantly rotating their taps and storing their product apporpriately, so stale beer is never an issue. Beers are served in their respective breweries' glassware- even Belgians like St. Bernardus- a nice touch.
Service: Has outright won the award for best service of any restaurant/bar in Buffalo. Simply exceptional wait and bar staff. In particular, a young male bartender (don't know his name) samples each beer in the building, can give great descriptions of each beer on tap, and will guide you to the best choice if you have difficulty making up your mind. Always friendly and responsive, and know how to pour.
Selection: Only 2 non-craft beers offered, and all 6 taps are craft. Usually have 1 or 2 taps from local Southern Tier and Flying Bison breweries, as well as other delicious seasonal beers (Great Lakes, Great Divide, and Blue Point have made appearances). Bottles from Abita (New Orleans brewery fits the theme), St. Bernardus and Trappistes Rochefort, Victory, Stone, Ommegang, Duvel, Lindemans (Lambic), etc. The list is approximately 30 bottles, changing seasonally, all fairly quality beers, and some exceptional ones (Victory Storm King Stout for example). Beer and wine establishment only, so the list could be more extensive, but I still appreciate their dedication to craft beer in a city overrun by Labatt (which they don't even carry :) ).
Food: Pricey, but great. These people know how to cook a steak, and make a decent (and large) caesar salad. As you would expect, tons of New Orleans themed fare- fried oyster poboys, pecan crusted grouper, bouillabaise have all been good, as is their sumptuous chocolate lava muffin dessert. No "bar food", but a great place to come to eat as well.
Value: It ain't cheap, but not horrendous. Drafts run $4.50 a pint (1/2 that during thursday happy hour, along with 1/2 price appetizers). Bottles run from $4 for Sam Adams Light to $9 for import Belgian Lambics. For the freshness and selection, the price is well worth it. For a friend who wants to experience good beer in Buffalo, or a date where you can get a great pint poured, Shango is the place.
06-05-2008 06:45:11 | More by gestalt162
4.9/5 rDev +7.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
We live in NYC and whenever we go home to visit our family, my husband and I sneak off to this place. An extremely well chosen list all served in it's appropriate glassware (not just the appropriate style glass, but actually labeled with the name of the beer you're drinking). This place is class all the way and yet completely unpretentious. Warm atmosphere, yummy, new orleans style food, at an amazing value. Family owned business with a love for great food, wine and BEER! This place rocks! Love it, love it, love it!
08-06-2007 00:42:42 | More by paleoplant
4.16/5 rDev -9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$$
Cheers: Modern neuvo Euro interior, something out of California eclectic interiors. Tea lights on tables to light your flammable breath on fire if you're feeling too highbrow and want to kick the trash factor a notch. Leather couches and easy chairs to pass out in. Comfy secluded booths to engage in extracurricular dinner time activites. 6 taps: all micro, 50 % NY, well rounded: Strong ale, IPA, amber, brown, 2 Belgians. Nice selection of bottles: 10 are Rogue bombers. No Labatt Blue banners or Bills pennents. DJ's spin house and trance music on weekdays/weekends. Take a date here and you will be well rewarded. No trash or posers. Majority of patrons drink micros.
Jeers: You have to have a job to pay for this place: pricey, but you're paying off the loan for the decor, atmosphere, and leather chairs. Garage door on the dinner side seems out of place. No bar patio. Air conditioning up too high. Located between 3rd Base (dive) and PJ Bottoms (8th grade to soph in college swill joint). Seemingly too nice for Buffalo.
06-20-2005 17:50:37 | More by wailingwench
Shango in Buffalo, NY
- out of 100 based on 7 ratings.