At 118 W. Chippewa St., Pho Lantern owner Michael Nguyen and his uncle Philip Vu are presenting their unusual concept with a high-tech restaurant system in a room done in Pacific-centered art and washes of new color.
Waves is running with a culinary theme based on Thai, Vietnamese, and Japanese cuisine. What will truly set WAVES apart from the rest of the ‘school’ is the technological aspect. Customers will order their selections on a digital menu tablet, which will signal the kitchen staff immediately that an order has been placed. Not only is that an unusual dining element (for Buffalo), the restaurant is also being developed around an “all you can eat” format (Weekdays: 4pm - close, Weekend: All Day), which will be very popular with fans of this type of cuisine. Waves is not a food buffet, rather it is designed for customers to relax, and order as they go, sampling a variety of culinary delights (including soups, salads, sushi, noodles, rice dishes, seafood and desserts), while enjoying the calming atmosphere. For those who prefer to order regular main entrées (Serve all day & everyday), they can do that as well.
As for the aesthetic vibe, WAVES will have an oceanic theme, of course. The entire restaurant will be a tranquil blue. The ambiance and décor of Waves is hinged on a contemporary and minimalist vibe. Colorful washes of light prevail, as do some intricate lighting schematics that include flatscreens on the back wall (playing videos of salt water fish swimming about), a couple of delicate sculpturesque lighting features, and plenty of fluctuating mood lighting at the bar, and backdrop wall.
The bar arena has been brilliantly opened up to the patio, creating a welcome flow. That alone creates a new sense of openness and mobility – very inviting. The improvement to the bar layout creates a better connectivity throughout the entire establishment.