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New tavern-grill working from scratch in Niagara Falls area

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A property in the Town of Wheatfield, near the Niagara Falls International Airport, has awakened from a decade-long snooze. What at one time had been Dad's Restaurant reopened on the Fourth of July as Taylors Tap & Grill.

While it is a new business, the ownership is not a novice group. Jeff Taylor, former owner of the Justin Tyme Café in Niagara Falls, is one of the partners and he's using his 20 years in the hospitality business to build the brand.

Taylors Tap & Grill, located at 2279 Niagara Falls Boulevard, is using made-from-scratch items such as breads, rolls, sauces and stocks. None of the food, except the ice cream, is frozen. The executive chef is Shea Miller, who most recently cooked at Union Jack's in Washington, D.C.

Miller told the Buffalo News "We’re trying to offer people value on a plate, with extremely high-quality food. The portions are large; there’s a lot of bang for the buck here.”

His burgers are a custom blend of chuck, brisket and short rib, and other items are on the upscale side compared to the average tavern fare. The highest priced dishes on the menu are the Angus hanger steak with Maytag blue cheese and whiskey-bacon jam, and the Parmesan-crusted grouper with key lime butter, each priced at $22. The house poutine is hand-cut fries cooked in duck fat with cheese curds, Nueske bacon and duck confit in house-made demi-glace, for $8.50.

“I’ve told all the servers that if a guest is on the fence, tell them to order it,” Miller said. “If they don’t like it, I’ll come out and talk to them, and make them something they want.”

The new venture seats 80 inside, 40 more on the patio. That outdoor space is in the process of being transformed into a beer garden. Hours are daily from 11 a.m., serving lunch, dinner and a late-night dinner menu. Phone: (716) 216-6078.

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