Locals have likely heard about the recent renovation at Parkside Candy—one of the area’s oldest operational candy, chocolate and ice cream shops—that has restored the Main Street shop’s interior to its original design. Parkside Candy is one of those landmarks that serves as a real-life, 3-D simulation of Buffalo’s heyday from the early part of the 20th century. Stepping into the shop is like stepping back in time, complete with music from the 1940s playing overhead.
The shop really has something for everyone. If you’re a lover of history and architecture, you need to see what has been preserved, and now restored, to its original glory. You know the saying, “they don’t make ‘em like they used to”? Well, this shop is proof they really don’t. It’s a candy-chocolate-ice cream shop rolled into one. It is an important stop for any dessert- or sugar-holic’s list.
Here’s what I recommend for an enjoyable experience at Parkside Candy: if it’s available, grab the table inside the rounded nook towards the back of the shop for the coziest experience. You can fit 2-3 in the booth, and another 2 can sit on the opposite side of the table. It’s literally the best seat in the house –you are tucked away inside the wall, which allows you the full view of this gorgeous shop splayed in front of you.
Next, have a light lunch. The shop has a few house-made soups and sandwich offerings that will make you feel like your mom made them. I had The Minnesota—chicken salad on a Costanzo roll—and it was the perfect pre-cursor to dessert. I highly recommend the Chocolate Chip Concoction ice cream sundae – it was so fragrant, it filled the air the moment it came to our table. And finally, make sure you pick up some sponge candy to nibble on later. The shop’s chocolate factory is in the back, where about 90 percent of the store’s chocolate is made. You can bet whatever chocolate you pick up will be fresh.
For those interested in knowing which aspects, exactly, have been restored, I was told by staff that the floors are new, the molding on the ceiling has been redone, the awnings have been replaced, the original tables and chairs from 1927 have been refurbished, and the beautiful old neon sign has been replaced as well, which lights up a festive pink and white between 7-10pm.
Happy eating and exploring!