Music & Waffles

A feature story from our February-exclusive “Escape The Cold” column.


Marisa Barnard, Staff Writer

One way to beat the cold this year is to stop by Funk’n Waffles located at 307-13 S Clinton Street in Syracuse. If you’re searching for a spunky and lively location to check out this weekend, Funk’n Waffles might be the place for you.

They have two main dining areas– one with quiet tables and booths for a casual meal and the other with a bar and stage for live music. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing night off or a lively performance, Funk’n Waffles is a great place to go. The restaurant is a hot spot for local bands and artists, with different live performances nearly every night. Some events are ticketed, however, there is a free Open Mic Night on Sundays.

The Open Mic Night features a diverse assortment of bands, musicians, and comedians. While the performances are typically done by local artists, if you feel so compelled, anyone can add their name to the list and take to the stage. Each artist receives 15 minutes to entertain. 

When I attended the event I was delighted by the mystery of each performance; I wasn’t sure what to expect of each and every performer. While the majority of artists tended to be musicians, there were a few comedians who gave the show a nice variety. 

I had a chance to interview Philip Lohrfink, a Le Moyne College student and member of the local band Champagne Blondes, about their experience performing at the event. Champagne Blondes is a local band of Le Moyne students who participate in the Le Moyne Rock Ensemble. Philip is one of the lead singers and guitarists. 

On Open Mic Night, Philip stated, “I go to the Funk ‘N Waffles Open Mic Night pretty frequently, and it’s been a great place to connect with people. As a singer-songwriter myself, I’ve gotten to debut some of my own music, and hear people’s reactions to it. The open mic night provides a fairly supportive community and a chance to share work you’ve done.”  

While enjoying the performance you can sit back and enjoy a waffle from their extensive menu of creative options. Their menu features favorites like Chicken & Waffles, classic yet delicious battered and seasoned chicken tenders on their buttermilk waffle, the James Brownie, a brownie waffle with ice cream and chocolate sauce, the Kind of Blue, a gluten free waffle with blueberries, or the Star Child, which comes with strawberries and whipped cream.

If you’re looking to have a fun night out while also supporting local artists, then spend an evening at Funk’n Waffles. Or, if early mornings are more your speed, the doors open at 9 a.m.