Location: West Seneca, NY
Let me preface this post with a description of the events leading up to stopping at Rusty Nickel. Buckle up folks, it’s going to be a cold and emotional ride.
January. 2021. Friday night. It’s cold- probably 20 degrees without wind chill. Liz and I get off work late and have to run to Orchard Park to pick up a Craigslist find. After the pick up, we decide to head over to one of their favorite places. Where all the magic happens, a holy place, a stadium located on One Bills Drive.
It’s Friday night. The stadium is dark and the air is cold. The Bills have clinched the AFC East title and tomorrow will be hosting the Colts for the first playoff game in Buffalo since 1996. (Babes were just two years old then.) If you close your eyes, you can almost hear the shout song play in the distance…
We meet long time supporter/friend/OP resident and bud of the blog, Erin, at the stadium for a quick photo shoot. We zip up our starter jackets and pull on our hats before snapping a few shots. We breathe it in and think about the events ahead of this place. Bills Stadium. The only time Liz and Krista will be at Bills Stadium before it becomes Highmark. Fans will be shuffling in for the first time all season. We look back and a tear almost forms in our eyes…
On to Rusty Nickel Brewing Company- the other reason this post lives. Being back at Bills Stadium made the babes ready for some brews and food. (Let’s be real, we were wishing it was a tailgate in the grass lot.) Nonetheless, we zipped over to West Seneca to check out Rusty Nickel.
Due to covid restrictions, we had to sit outside. Even though it was frigid out, the brewery did a decent job running heaters and blocking out the wind in a covered pavilion directly next to the brewery. The inside of the brewery was pretty cozy with the remaining Christmas decorations up. On the other side of the heated pavilion was a larger outdoor space used in the warmer months. It looked like a lot of fun and we’re kind of bummed we visited during a pandemic in the winter. It must be a blast to watch Bills games there in September/October.
The beer selection relied heavily on porters and stouts. If you’ve been paying attention you’ll know porters and stouts are not Krista and Liz’s favorites. We assumed the menu leaned towards these heavy, dark beers because it was the dead of winter. Another reason to visit in the summer is to get those yummy IPAs and sours. Krista managed to get a flight while Liz ordered the only IPA on the menu. The beer was good- just not the variation we like. The bartenders offered tastings of beers before we ordered, but that’s about as friendly as they got.
Let’s talk about the food. Oh, the food. If there was a place that had to adapt quickly to the Cuomo food rule, it must have been Rusty Nickel Brewing Company. I’m assuming based on the menu and quality of food they probably sent people to Ebenezer Ale House for food. We ordered chicken fingers and loaded tator tots. It was literally freezer food cooked in a toaster oven! It was the definition of Cuomo food. We applaud their effort to try but were disappointed in the food and the price… Full disclosure: we grabbed Mighty Taco on the way home.
Liz and I agree we wish we could have given Rusty Nickel a more fair review based on a summer visit. We would love to stop by if we are in the neighborhood again!
A little extra: here’s a hype video Buffalo Fanatics made for the Bills-Colts game in case you want to reminisce and get goosebumps. Is it Bills season yet?!?