The Tarmac Cafe

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Looking to do something a bit different this month, your Discriminating Diners decided to go out for breakfast. Having heard many wonderful things about the newest folks at the airport, we chose the Tarmac Café and their Sunday brunch.

The restaurant is located in the Chautauqua County Airport terminal, just a short drive outside of Jamestown. For anyone who has never visited our local airport, it’s easy to follow the signage off North Main Street and travel out West Oak Hill Road. After a pleasant trip, we arrived to find plenty of convenient and free parking close to the terminal doors. Kudos to the staff of the airport for managing all the recent snow and ensuring we had a safe way to enter.

This was important because the aromas of good food filled the air before we even entered the building. We eagerly passed through the terminal doors. The Café is located on the right side with two separate entrances, one for the counter service area and the second, closer to the security check, for the dining rooms. Our suggestion—if you have the option—pass through the first area to sit in the corner room with the large windows looking out on the runway and activities of the airport. The seating in this area is a comfortable collection of tables and chairs with plenty of space so as not to feel crowded. The buffet is set up in the first dining area, where there are also several booths available for seating.

Having selected a table by the windows, we were quickly welcomed by a friendly and very attentive staff. Service throughout our visit was outstanding. We were offered drinks while we perused the menu, while enjoying what proved to be a good cup of coffee that was never allowed to run low, I also heard many other options available including the Pepsi line of beverages, juices and milk. We were told that they are still waiting for their liquor license, so neither beer nor wine are available should you choose to come for lunch or dinner.

The menu offered a large selection with both breakfast and lunch options in addition to the buffet. Having been looking forward to the buffet, my decision was easy but the choices for the others in our party were not so simple. Watching other meals as they were served, the offerings looked very appetizing and generous. The omelets are made with four eggs with your choice of ingredients and are so big they hang off the edge of the plate. The same is true of the pancakes. Special requests were welcomed and if you like your bacon crisp (and we do!), this is cooked to perfection.

On the day we were here, the buffet line started with scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage and home fries. Pancakes, biscuits and sausage gravy come next. Lunch items included a delicious white fish, sliced pork, and chicken and biscuits, accompanied by mashed potatoes and string beans. The line ended with fruit and a tossed salad. You are welcomed and encouraged to enjoy it all.

One more thing that you can’t miss during your visit is the multigrain bread. I know you might question “Bread?” but the answer is yes. It is a treat not to be missed. The last time I heard anyone talk so much about bread, we were in San Francisco. And while we’re not sure how many grains are needed to be considered “multi”, this is really, really good.

The restaurant is open for breakfast and lunch seven days a week and dinner on Fridays. They can be reached at (716) 499-6883. To-go meals are available. The operators also provide catering and the opportunity for private parties on site. Worthy of “four forks,” this is a great new option if you’re looking for a place to enjoy a good meal at reasonable prices in a very friendly setting.