Review: Buffalo

By Ellie Philpotts


What is this!? Going to Buffalo on a.. Tuesday?!

OK, that makes it sound like an unpopular place. It’s not. It’s just that it’s more associated with Mondays.

Buffalo is so much part of the Cardiff furniture that it probably needs no introduction, but here it is anyway. Since 2005, the self-declared local institution has been the Cardiff student’s first port of call for some boogying, cocktails and live music. We all know there’s nothing wrong with a little bump ‘n’ grind, and we all know Mondays are when this happens. Mondays, in Buffalo.

Quench are big fans – our next social is there! – but Bump ‘n’ Grind definitely shouldn’t be the only reason you’re paying Buffalo a visit.

Buffalo are big business – they’re the proud recipients of Trip Advisor’s most recent highly acclaimed Certificate of Excellence; winners of the Chortle Awards’ Best Club Night 2016 – Wales and West; and host every event under that very limited Welsh sun, from vintage fairs to live bands, comedy to dance. So there’s plenty we could talk about. But, seeing as we’re Quench Food, we’re going to talk about their food.


You only have to look around to realise just how much Cardiff’s food scene is changing. New businesses are popping up everywhere you turn – and we’re totally behind that. But sometimes the old mantra of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ rings true – Buffalo are still doing what they’ve been doing for years, and Cardiff residents and visitors far and wide are still pretty damn happy about it. Rest assured, however, no matter how many retro throwbacks they might play on a themed night, their menu is in no way trapped in the past – it’s always updating old classics.

When you’re bored of the old hamburger, you know it’s time for a Buffalo burger – take from that what you will – and it’s fair to say the behind-the-scenes crew at Buffalo know what they’re doing in the burger stakes. From the Fun Guy (yes, mushrooms do play a starring role) to  the Bonnie Clyde, they’re not only good at naming burgers, they’re good at making them , but you can take matters into your own hands thanks to their Build Your Own function. Choose between beef; chicken; pork or lamb, and mushroom or red bean if your Meat-Free Monday spans all week, on sesame; brioche; gluten-free or sourdough. Vegans look away now – but otherwise, fling on a cheese, with options including Buffalo Mozzarella (of course); blue cheese and American Burger; and a range of toppings, whether your tastes are simple (lettuce, tomato, etc etc), or more adventurous (pulled pork; prosciutto; prawns; and, alarmingly, the odd option not beginning with P, such as jalapenos, avocado and egg.)

With personalised sauces and some pretty unbeatable sweet potato fries, you’re all set, but fear not if burgers aren’t your thing. Slightly earlier in the day sees prawn and crab salads; all-day breakfasts and lunches including Steak Ciabatta; Health Club Sandwich; and Roast Pepper Buffalo Burger – all of which are worth leaving Cathays for. Admittedly, most things in life are, but Buffalo’s breakfast and lunch menus score especially highly.


The food also spans to wraps; sharing platters of nachos and jerk wings; and desserts like Pancake Stacks and Brownie Fingers, and of course we can’t go without praising the abundance of cocktails. Buffalo are pretty well-known for their drinks display, and their handy 2-4-1 offers are good enough because our poor student bank accounts have less reason to be angry at us. But they’re more than that – in flavours from Waterlillet (the winner of their cocktail competition, no less), to Banana Cream Soda (all about that 5 a day), there are plenty of choices, and they’re all bound to be good ones to make. At the start of the night, at least.

With vintage-esque decor; a convenient location slightly away from the main hustle and bustle of the city centre but not exactly far to walk; and the genuinely loveliest staff you could imagine (and much more but I’ve been trying not to ramble lately), the literal only downside about a meal at Buffalo is the very severe food baby you’ll be sporting for at least the next day.

Thanks Buffalo for such a lovely evening – we’ll be back!