By Joshua Maloni
With The Silo and Water Street Landing closed for winter, and other eateries looking to scale back as the days grow shorter and the temperature decreases, the Lewiston Event Center is expanding its culinary offerings. The family-fun center recently began serving lunch.
“We're just trying to offer … great food, great atmosphere; and we're just trying to get more people in here,” co-owner Emery Simon said Thursday.
When he and Harold Hibbard purchased the former Frontier Lanes bowling alley in 2012, they inherited a challenge faced by the previous management: convincing people the site served quality food.
The current owners enhanced the kitchen area, twice renovated the bar, and added some items one might not expect at such a location.
“We buy good, quality food,” Simon said. “Actually, we buy really good. Our food, I'll put it up against anybody's. It tastes good. It's fresh. You're getting generous portions. It's just good food.
“You know, we got different things besides just the pizza and wings – and our wings are phenomenal. Our pizza is fantastic. We've got a burger that's to die for. I love burgers. I go everywhere. And you can find a burger pretty much anywhere. But our burgers are a real half-pound. And they're fresh. They taste great.
“They make for me – I try to be a low-carb guy – they do a salad. They put a burger on it. Put mozzarella cheese or whatever kind of cheese you want. Put sautéed onions, mushrooms, bacon; and they cut my burger up like a pizza pie. And I eat that. And it's just second to none.”
He emphasized, “You're not going to find a better burger – and they'll make it any way you want to make it. It's absolutely outstanding.
“We've got wraps now here. We've got quesadillas. We've got pizza logs, french fries, onion rings – the staples that you would have at a place like this. But we've also got mozzarella sticks, mac and cheese bites. Salads. We have desserts here. We have frozen ice cream, if somebody wants ice cream. The food is just exceptional here. I would rather eat here then go out somewhere else.”
Though there’s only one menu right now, “We're going to have lunch specials,” Simon said. “It's going to be the same menu, but we're going to have actual lunch menus. And provided we get enough people going and in demand, what we would do is start doing a specialty plate for each day. You know, do something different – something that's not on the menu; just make a lunch special out of it.”
The LEC has also become a hot spot for sports – whether it’s afternoon football or evening hockey.
“As you can see, we put six, 65-inch TVs above the bar – we call it our Jumbotron,” Simon said. “We have an 86-inch TV; we have 75-inch TVs all around.
“There's really no bad seat in the house. If you want to watch a Bills game, you want to watch a Sabres game – you want to watch any game – you come here, they'll put it on. You're not going to find a better place to watch a game.”
For those who want to use the lanes, “The bowling is going good,” Simon said. “Things are changing in the bowling industry. The people want to do fun things. And the day of the competitive bowler is not what it was years ago. But now what's happening is people want to have a good time. They want to bring their significant other with them.
“Wednesday night, we have a bowling league. … We've got a couple of leagues, and they're just fun leagues. You come in, they’re just having a good time. It's not about, you know, ‘What's my score?’ It's about having a good time.”
The Lewiston Event Center is located at 845 Cayuga St. For more information, visit http://lewistoneventcenter.com/.