Above: The former Swan Lounge is expected to become Hydraulic Hearth this summer. Photos: Harry Zemsky.
By Andrew Z. Galarneau
This summer, Larkinville should welcome its newest attraction: The Hydraulic Hearth, in the old Swan Lounge building, 716 Swan St., across from Larkin Square.
Harry Zemsky, son of Buffalo developer Howard Zemsky, will run the restaurant as part of his family’s Larkinville redevelopment project. He hopes to open mid-summer, if all goes well.
“Back in the day, the hearth used to be the center of a community. People from the neighborhood would come together to share a communal hearth,” Zemsky said. “That represents what we’re trying to do in Larkinville, where we’re trying to rebuild a community. So, Hydraulic Hearth.”
The brick oven pizza restaurant will bear the name of its neighborhood, shaped 150 years ago by the textile industry’s energy source, water.
Amid a number of interesting features Harry Zemsky described - shuffleboard courts, a beer garden and a dedicated parking spot for a food truck - the restaurant aims to harness Buffalo’s new power source: beer.