One of the great pleasures of Garden Walk weekend—which is this Friday and Saturday, July 30-31, if, in the fog of Buffalo’s festival-packed summer heat, you’ve forgotten about it—is to plan your tour of Buffalo’s neighborhoods around stops for refreshment. A garden party here, a glass of something cold on a patio there. This year the Black Sheep (367 Connecticut Street) offers something that is, predictably, a bit heavier and pork-centric: a pig roast, 11am-2:30pm, Saturday, July 30. $25 a head gets you some roast pork from T-Meadow Farms, housemade barbecue sauces, and a variety of sides. Beverages and gratuity not included.
In the same neighborhood, another stop worth considering: Paradise Wine (435 Rhode Island Street). To mark Garden Walk weekend, Paradise will host tastings both Saturday and Sunday, July 30-31, 12-3pm each day. Saturday’s tasting features a cocktail made of local distiller Black Squirrel’s maple rum and fresh pineapple juice produced by Press Food & Juice, newly relocated across the street at 426 Rhode Island. (Buy a bottle of Black Squirrel to take home, get 10% off.) For Sunday’s tasting, Paradise will pop bottles of La Jara prosecco. (Buy a bottle to take to a garden party, get 15% off.)
(Meantime, across the street, gardening center Urban Roots is a venue for the Infringement Festival, which also runs this weekend: On Saturday, July 30, 12-3pm, they host live music—Kerry Fey, the Buttered Goods, All’amore. Swing by after Paradise.)
On Saturday, July 30, 4-7pm in Allentown, after the Garden Walk ends, the First Presbyterian Church (One Symphony Circle) hosts a garden party with jazz by Sal Andolina, some light summer fare, wine, and beer—including Flying Bison’s newest release, E. B.’s Tower Power. Admission is $10, beer and wine tickets are cheap, and proceeds benefit the restoration of the lovely and historic church, designed by E. B. Green. Pre-order tickets at onesymphonycircle.org.
Similarly, the Twentieth Century Club—another historic and architectural gem—hosts a benefit party the night before Garden Walk, Friday, July 29, 5:30-8pm. Tickets may seem steep at $45 each, but the garden is extraordinary and proceeds benefit continuing preservation efforts. Around the garden will be artwork by Rita Argen Auerbach, Karen Foegen, Kathy Schifano, Meg Sabella, Elaine Kessel, Bruce Barber, Jean Jain, Joe George, Catherine Tillou, Russell Ram, and Susan Miller. Use the garden entrance at 516 Franklin Street.