Tommy Cowan buffalo NY obituary and dead, Two Buffalo restaurants

Tommy Cowan buffalo NY obituary and dead, Two Buffalo restaurants
Tommy Cowan buffalo NY obituary and dead, Two Buffalo restaurants

Two Buffalo restaurants have temporarily closed their doors following the passing of owner Tommy Cowan earlier this week.

Both Forty Thieves Kitchen & Bar located at 727 Elmwood Ave. and Doc Sullivan’s at 474 Abbott Road made announcements on social media, expressing their closure until further notice: “We appreciate everyone’s support during these difficult times.”

A native of South Buffalo, Cowan had a rich history in the region’s hospitality sector. In 2017, he, along with partner Brian Scanlon, launched Forty Thieves, transforming the former Blue Monk space. Additionally, Cowan was reported to have ownership stakes in Patrick’s Rooftop at 500 Pearl St.

His previous endeavors included Midtown Kitchen near Bryant Street and MTK Prime in Williamsville. According to Ellicott Development CEO William Paladino, Cowan left an indelible mark on Buffalo’s restaurant landscape. Ellicott Development oversees operations at the Aloft Hotel and 500 Pearl.

“Tommy was an icon and the GOAT in that arena and will be remembered as such,” Paladino remarked to WIVB-Channel 4. “He will be painfully missed.”

Cowan was also deeply involved in Buffalo’s wing culture, regularly participating in the National Buffalo Wing Festival with Doc Sullivan’s. Just a month ago, Forty Thieves wings clinched the title of tournament champions in the Buffalo Wing Coalition’s 2024 Best Wings in Buffalo.

Tributes poured in on social media throughout May 7 from Cowan’s family, friends, and industry peers, including one from Griffin’s Irish Pub: “On behalf of the entire Griffins staff, we’d like to offer our heartfelt condolences and prayers to the family and friends of Tommy Cowan. South Buffalo’s heart is heavy.”

Another touching tribute came from the team at Prohibition 2020: “Thank you for all the amazing memories and the leadership so many of us try to duplicate. You’re a trendsetter, a gentleman, a leader, and above all, an amazing friend, family man, coworker, boss, and human.”


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