Funk N' Waffles to get new location in Armory Square

New downtown location looks to book bigger bands and add alcohol to the menu alongside famous waffles.

The popular Marshall Street diner, Funk N’ Waffles, is opening up a new location downtown in Armory Square. The new venue plans to serve alcohol and bring more live music into town, but will try to stay family-oriented.

There is also no exact date for the opening yet, owner Adam Gold says.

“I have never done anything like that before, I am unsure about the date,” he said.

Photo: Ben Burrows
The new location, in addition to bringing in bigger bands and serving alcohol, will feature a street-level, and not a basement atmosphere.

Gold is now in the process of obtaining permits from the city, including an alcohol license. 

Gold also hopes that selling alcohol might bring bigger budgets and, therefore, will allow inviting more popular bands. There are no names yet, but the owner hopes to keep the same wide variety of music: local, national and international bands of different styles and genres.

With the new location downtown, Gold hopes to target a more adult audience at night, but will keep the restaurant family-oriented for breakfasts and brunches. The Marshall Street location will remain the same.

Funk N’ Waffles now serves as a popular venue for student fundraisers and group gatherings. Gold thinks a new location downtown will probably have less student-oriented events.  

“Armory Square is not within walking distance from campus, and I just think that sororities and fraternities won’t benefit that much from having their events there,” he said.

At least one student agrees with Gold that the new downtown location may not be that attractive to students.

“I don’t know if I will go to the place downtown,” says Arts and Sciences junior, Kelly, who comes to Funk N’ Waffles mostly for “Open Mic” events and to rummage through old vinyl records. “I get lazy to get out of campus, but maybe I’ll try.”

Gold hopes that the new location will target more locals and tourists.

“Historically, Marshall Street is a place where people who live in Syracuse don’t go to,” he says.

Since being featured on the Food Network more than a year ago, it has experienced a wave of tourists, university guests and prospective students with families. Sometimes the wait for a table is around one hour on a weekend, and Gold hopes that the downtown location will decrease the wait. According to reviews on Yelp, Funk N’ Waffles’ biggest complaint is the long wait. 

Although the construction of the new location has not started yet, the owner has an image of what it’s going to look like. 

“It is going to be like this but nicer,” Gold says in reference to the current location. “Brick walls, tin ceiling.”

The new location is also going to be three times bigger than the current one, at roughly 4,000 square feet.

The new venue will take the place of the XL Projects Art Gallery, located at 307-313 S. Clinton St. 

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