Updated: Jan 11
Warm and welcoming. Those words replay in my mind when I think of Joey’s Place. From the moment you pull into the parking lot, you are met with a historic building that has seen decades of Buffalo life. The inside feels like you have time-traveled to the early 40s: from the bar, to the food, to even the interior design. The workers also greet you with a smile, which allows you to feel right at home. The 40’s were exactly what the owner had in mind when building the restaurant. I had the pleasure of meeting the owner, Joseph Dallos Jr., and was able to learn more about the restaurant and his life.
Mr. Dallos is a hard-working and dedicated person. Ever since he could remember, he was drawn to the hustle and bustle of restaurant life. Through his strong work ethic, he was able to move up from washing dishes at 14 to being able to buy his first restaurant at 25, which was Fortunato’s. After selling Fortunato’s in 2006, he continued working more in the restaurant business. He opened up Joey’s Place, which was originally located at 1122 Hertel Ave., but amazingly outgrew the original building due to its much appreciated success.
Mr. Dallos is a self-taught chef, which can be easily seen just by eating his food. The amount of passion and love that goes into every single meal is phenomenal. "What motivates me is the satisfaction of my customers... I treat them like family." His customers are Joey’s Place's #1 priority. He is willing to go above and beyond just to make sure everyone is taken care of. Everything on the menu was carefully selected by the customers to show that Mr. Dallos caterers to your needs. Joey’s Place is the perfect restaurant if you are looking for a nostalgic meal. Along with having the comfort of knowing you will be treated to great food, you will be able to relax and feel at home all while still being in a restaurant.
"Joey’s Place is a classic Italian restaurant located in Tonawanda, New York. The menu has a wide variety of options including traditional Italian meals and some typical Buffalo favorites. A few of their popular dishes are the Fried Eggplant, Artichokes Francaise, Lasagna, and Chicken Parmesan. I grew up in Buffalo, but this was my first time eating here. As someone who belongs to a big Italian family, my love for Italian food is very strong.
The Artichoke Francaise was a wonderful starter. This dish is a popular Italian appetizer and Joey’s Place does an amazing job of putting it together. The artichokes are breaded and fried, then finished with a delicious lemon-butter sauce. The portion size is larger, so it is a perfect appetizer for many people to share. The lasagna was also one of my favorite dishes that we had the opportunity to try! It is fresh and homemade by Joey himself and is assembled by layering their sauce, ricotta cheese, beef, and mozzarella.
As noted on the menu, “you’ll think you’re back at grandma’s house,” which is the best way to describe it. A resemblance between the items on this menu is the noticeably homemade sauce and ingredients.
Other than the food, the atmosphere of Joey’s Place was welcoming. The owner and servers are very helpful and personable which always makes the meal more enjoyable." - Grace Carra (Intern)
"Joey’s Place Restaurant and Bar is located in Tonawanda, NY. The restaurant offers a large dining room, bigger bar, and expanded menu.
The first course I had was the Fried Eggplant. The eggplant was tasty, and fried to a perfect crisp and was served with a side of red sauce. The two were an ideal match. My next favorite dish was the Chicken Parmesan. The plate was piled high with spaghetti and a large piece of chicken. The chicken was covered in gooey, warm cheese, and thick red sauce. Last but not least, one of my favorites, dessert. I had a delicious Cannoli, filled with perfection. The rich and creamy mixture paired with the sweet, crunchy shell was sprinkled with powdered sugar and chocolate chips.
Each meal was amazing. Joey’s Place is a great spot to gather with others. I will definitely recommend Joey’s Place to family and friends." - Fiona Higgins (Intern)
"Joey’s Place is a classic Italian restaurant that would be the perfect place to gather with family or friends, or host a small meeting in the banquet room. The bar was fully stocked and extended from wall to wall, leaving lots of open seating. The staff exceeded my standards and made sure to accommodate our every need, especially the bartender, Dave.
The Turkey Dinner is the regular’s favorite dish at Joey’s Place. This seasonal meal can be ordered any time and is exceptional no matter the time of year. The fresh and savory turkey breast comes with cloud-like mashed potatoes that are buttered to perfection, delicious stuffing, sweet corn, crunchy carrots and beans, and a tangy cranberry sauce to top it off. The portion size of the Turkey Dinner is quite large and would be able to be taken home and enjoyed the next day. My favorite part of the entire dish was covering it in a layer of sweet gravy and devouring it while it was hot!
The 8 ounce Salmon was my personal favorite dish at Joey’s Place. The fish is prepared by adding oil to a hot pan and searing it on each side for a few minutes. Once the salmon had cooked long enough to have a firm outside, more oil was added to get the last bit of flavor to emerge. The filet was then plated and a creamy, tangy lemon caper sauce was drizzled over top of it while they were both piping hot. If you aren’t a fan of lemon caper sauce, the fish also comes with the option of having horseradish crusted sauce on top. This tender, flaky textured fish also comes with your choice of perfectly cooked potatoes or crunchy vegetables on the side.
Lemons have a rich history in Italian culture and have traveled to the menus of various Italian restaurants. At Joey’s Place, we had the opportunity to try their fluffy and tangy Italian Lemon Cake… and it did not disappoint. The traditional dessert was constructed by two decadent layers of lemon cake held together by a lightweight, fluffy, and creamy frosting. The cake was then garnished with a dollop of whipped cream and powdered sugar. This moist and delicate cake was a pleasant reminder of summer but most definitely be enjoyed at any time of the year!" - Liv Simon (Intern)