Dining after dark: Alton's
Back in my high school days, most school dances or football games eventually led to midnight (or later) chow-downs at any number of diner-style chain restaurants. Whether you were digging into a Moon Over My Hammy at the local Denny’s or a huge slice of pie at Perkins, undertipping the waitress after running her ragged for coffee refills was a teenage rite of passage. Today, fewer and fewer restaurants with table service stay open twenty-four hours, and in Buffalo these chains seem to be losing their hold on the wallets of diners, resulting in closings and minimized hours all over the region. But have no fear, locally owned Alton’s carries on the all-night tradition, with much better service and better food than a chain. Both of their locations (Cheektowaga and Elma) serve up piping hot renditions of breakfast, most notably the chicken souvlaki breakfast, with consistency, regardless of the hour. Served with seasoned chicken, two eggs, toast, and home fries for $9, this is a great way to fight off late-night hunger pangs. Better yet, their home fries have the option of “with onion,” or “without,” something few diners offer, but many guests appreciate.
2250 Walden Ave., Cheektowaga, 716-681-7055; 2221 Transit Rd., Elma, 716-674-1900, www.altonsrestaurant.com