By Carolyn Conte | The Duquesne Duke
A blue and white rectangular sign is all that’s left of Duquesne’s neighbor and hockey night hot spot, the Blue Line Grill. The American-fare restaurant has now become a southern upscale diner called Buford’s Kitchen, after being bought out by the Andora Restaurant Group in late September.
For the employees who worked at the Blue Line, not much has changed. The restaurant has a new menu and manager, but has kept most of its employees and even some of the old furniture.
“We do have a lot of the same furniture [as the Blue Line] but it’s more of a rustic warehouse feel,” general manager Nickie Kredel said.
“This wood is custom made,” she said, motioning to the decorative adornments on the walls.
The menu is meant to seem rustic too. It will be a blend of traditional southern cuisine and a northern upscale dining experience. Specialties include a shrimp po’boy and fried chicken, as well as deluxe milkshakes.
“We aren’t trying to ‘do better’ than Blue Line Grill,” Kredel said. “Rather, it’s about bringing diversity…We want people to be able to come here before a game, and provide them variety.”
The buyout by Andora came as the Blue Line struggled to balance the hefty revenues earned during hockey season with the relatively slow sales that happened for the other four months of the year. Buford’s Kitchen will face the same challenge, but the new management is optimistic that the restaurant will be able to gain a following.
In the next month, renovations will be made to the lounge on the roof of the building, which is called Uptown.
“In a month or two, we will be adding wood and southern style additions to it,” manager Pat Stoll said.
Duquesne students trying the new restaurant can save 10 percent by showing their student IDs when they pay.