The Buffalo chicken sandwich from Waterfront Bar & Grill features grilled chicken — not fried — which is tossed in Buffalo sauce, so it’s not too heavy. It’s topped with melted cheese, fresh lettuce, tomato, red onion and ranch dressing. The sandwich is served on a toasted bun, which is one of those small touches that really makes a difference.

But truth be told, I could have picked just about anything off of the bar’s menu. Waterfront has pared down its menu to a handful of sandwiches, burgers and salads, and they are all quite good. The secret ingredient here, the one that puts the Waterfront on my go-to list for summer dining, is the location.

For a city with miles of rivers, there is a dearth of river side drinking and dining options in Lansing. I understand there was a time when the river wasn’t pleasant to look at — and I’m still not eager to go for a swim in it — but it’s the perfect backdrop for a sandwich and a beer. Add in Waterfront’s killer view of the downtown skyline, and you’ve got one of the best patios in town.

But get there early. When the weather’s nice, the patio fills up quickly. If you’re lucky, maybe Deacon Earl or Mike Skory will be throwing down some live blues.

Waterfront Bar & Grill

11 a.m.-midnight Monday-Saturday; noonmidnight Sunday 325 City Market Drive, Lansing (517) 267-3800,

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