Situated a couple of blocks from Days Park and Allentown is Willie’s Little Corner – an authentic Puerto Rican restaurant (with some everyday items thrown in) that has quickly become a favorite of the neighborhood. I’ve stopped in a couple of times now, and each time there are numerous people at the counter picking up their food or sitting at tables and enjoying it. Over the past few years there have been a couple of restaurant operators trying to make a go of it at the corner of Hudson and West, yet it was not until I tried Willie’s that I felt any real measure of success.
What makes Willie’s different is the diversity of the menu. I found it very interesting that the eatery serves traditional breakfasts from 8am to 5pm. Now that’s different. It’s also nice to know that there’s another breakfast nook right in this neighborhood, and that a juice or coffee is included with your meal. For five bucks you can get pancakes, sausages and omelet (that’s what it says on the menu). Then there are the on-the-run options like bagel with ham and cheese or the oatmeal. For lunch and dinner, customers can get a variety of ethnic and American selections that range from The Cuban sandwich (salami, turkey, pastrami, pork, American white cheese) to a tuna fish sandwich (every time I see a tuna fish sandwich in an ethnic restaurant I always think of the movie The Jerk – remember Navin’s tuna fish salad on white bread with mayonnaise, a Tab and a couple of Twinkies… and Cellophane?).
For my meal, I decided to try something a bit out of the ordinary. I went with the guineos en escabeche (green bananas sautéed with onions), served with yellow rice and shredded iceberg lettuce. After mixing around on the plate and adding some hot sauce I had discovered a nice vegetarian twist on a taco salad. Meat-lovers will truly love Willie’s though… whether they go for the alcapurrias (de guineos – root fritter stuffed with beef), or the tripleta (pork, chicken, steak and American white cheese). Whatever your preferences are, you will find that Willie’s is a breath of fresh air when it comes to Puerto Rican food. The restaurant is bright and clean and features a flat screen TV that plays Puerto Rican dance and game shows. The service is quick and friendly and there are plenty of seats to be had.
I highly recommend trying out Willie’s. It’s quality food, with cheap prices that will make you appreciate it even more. Don’t forget to check out the daily list of specials. On Fridays they serve up a fish fry with the option of sautéed onions, and on Saturday they offer six different specials ranging from chuletas (pork chops) to sancocho (vegetable root stew).
Open 8am-5pm | Dine in or take out | Closed Sundays
Willie’s Little Corner Restaurant
272 Hudson Street (corner of West Avenue)
Buffalo, NY 14201