Pittsburgh Restaurants

I have friends coming to Pittsburgh next weekend, and I'm looking for restaurant reviews, since I don't get out enough to keep up with this stuff. Pittsburgh doesn't have Zagat's, but this is pretty helpful (even though it represents the opinions of a pretty small sample!) -- since it's pretty up-to-date. And for the restaurants that I've visited, it tracks my experiences pretty well.


19 Responses to "Pittsburgh Restaurants"

Anonymous said... 9/29/2006 2:03 PM

Their review of Pamela's disqualifies this website in my mind. I've completely given up on restaurant review web sites - the only way to know for sure is to try them all yourself...several times.

Anonymous said... 9/29/2006 2:09 PM

Yes, it's a bit quirky. I went to the recommended Chinese place in Robinson and found it very disappointing. But I'm probably spoiled by New York, San Francisco and Boston Chinatowns.

Anonymous said... 9/29/2006 3:55 PM

Bona Terra is fit for people who love food, no matter where they are from. It is an amazing food experience.

Anonymous said... 9/29/2006 7:43 PM

Bigelow Grill in the Doubletree Hotel, near Mellon Arena. The chef, Kevin Sousa, is f'ing genius. And ask that Big Jim be your waiter.

Anonymous said... 9/30/2006 1:43 PM

I find Yelp to have good reviews. And unlike that web page above, if you disagree you can add yours into the mix.

Dan Eldridge said... 9/30/2006 3:09 PM

It's true that Bona Terra is about as good as it gets here. But for a wider selection of help, Google "Chowhound" and look for the Pittsburgh page. (I think it's bundled in with Philly under the Penna page.) Other idea: Search the archives of the City Paper's food column; they review both expensive and cheap places.

Amos_thePokerCat said... 10/01/2006 7:43 PM

Depends what you are looking for, formal, informal, ethnic, bar, find dining, etc. The Carnegie Library has a page of good dining links in the guide to Pittsburgh Restaurants.

Citysearch.com tends to go in cycles, depending on who has bought them lately. Not everything has an "editoral" review. There are user reviews, but not many. It is pretty complete as far as phone numbers, and if the restaurant has a web site.

The PG has a restaurant review archive, but searching it is hit or miss with google. The PG provides no better way to do it. The TR has the same thing. Just an archive of reviews, but no good way to search.

The TR does have a food blog, Art of Eating, but it seems almost no one reads it since it is fairly well hidden on the site, and it has almost no comments.

QED's Pittsburgh Magazine has a dining guide with mainly thumbnails. They do longer reviews, but only a hand full of the monthly reviews are available.

City Paper has a Dining Guide to help you search, and an archive. The last time CP did a "Best of" dining it was 2004.

There are a couple of PIT restaurant review blogs. EatItAndLoveIt is reviews by mostly vegitarian young adults, but they allow comments. "Pittsburgh Foodies" was a blog that was only around from April to July of this year.

The upside of not having alot of new exciting restaurants here, is the ones that survive tend to be around for a long time, and most natives have already tried them.

Anonymous said... 10/02/2006 1:14 AM

Most user contributed Internet restaurant reviews are a complete waste of time. These sites seem to be dominated by drunk twenty-something women who think that the Olive Garden qualifies as a gourmet dining experience.

You have to love the girl in San Francisco who wrote 588(!) restaurant reviews in a year, one of which included an opinion that a cutting edge Peruvian restaurant was “dependable Italian fare”.

As always, you get what you pay for.

Anonymous said... 10/02/2006 4:42 PM

Unsung: Zarra's, in North Oakland, on Bigelow Boulevard across from Sheraton old folks home, between Schenley High School and Bloomfield Bridge. Arresting decor, delectable Italian home cooking, loud Dean Martin music, and if you're lucky, Johnny will stop by your table with aparatifs on the house.

joe wertheim said... 10/02/2006 5:47 PM

A couple of names that I did not see mentioned, and which we have enjoyed, are Eleven in the Strip District, La Foret (sp?) and the Red Room. Also, Iovino's in Mt. Lebanon is a great local addition.

psu said... 10/04/2006 8:24 PM

I've as yet only been to Eleven once, so didn't want to write it up. It was good but not fantastic, esp. for the price.

Same with La Foret (which I thought was excellent).

I didn't think the Red Room was all that. But again, only been once.

Drover said... 10/06/2006 12:19 AM

Best bet for impressing out-of-towners is Church Brew Works, hands-down. Decent (but not great) beer, beautiful ambiance and modestly upscale but not "snooty" food; it's a pretty decent package. True gourmet aficionados are not likely to be impressed but people who eat primarily at mid-priced restaurants are likely to dig it. I also can't say enough things about the wonderful little Point Breeze neighborhood nook called Point Brugge (401 N. Hastings). It's a Belgian restaurant/cafe that sits in "downtown" Point Breeze, a one-half-block long business strip on Reynolds Street. It's almost worth the trip alone to see this vibrant little half-block strip that serves as a central hub to the tidy little neighborhood around it. It's like a slice of Mayberry right in the middle of the East End. Point Brugge is small, charming, delicious and quite popular -- call ahead for reservations. Best of all, even gourmet snobs are likely to dig it just as much as "normal" diners with a slight sense of adventure. Highly, highly recommended for both the dining experience and the neighborhood experience.

Anonymous said... 10/06/2006 11:26 PM

Definetly Monteray Bay Fish Grotto on Mt. Washington, great food, GREAT view, expensive, but will definitely impress.

Anonymous said... 10/07/2006 12:38 PM

La Tavola Italiana in Mount Washington but NOT on Grandview. Back in a hidden little corner of Mt. W. Mom and Pop Sicilian, and Mom is a fantastic cook. And their son is a Pitt Law student.
BYOB. Make reservations if you're going on the weekend or you might not get in. And this is one of the few restaurants where I try to save room for dessert, there's a chocolate/raspberry thingy that's phenomenal.

ps Point Brugge doesn't take reservations.

Steve said... 10/08/2006 10:51 PM

Where did you end up going?

Anonymous said... 10/18/2006 12:37 PM

I just wanted to add TastyBurgher to your list of restaurant review websites to check out in Pittsburgh.

Anonymous said... 11/17/2006 11:32 AM

I second tastyburgher.com. I just found it and I generally agree with the reviews but there aren't that many of them. It's too late for the original poster with OOT friends, but I love La Tavolo and I think that the beer at Church Brew Works tastes like perfume.

Ehrrin said... 12/03/2007 4:28 PM

see, the review of Pamela's on the http://kvdpsu.org/pgh-restaurants.html makes me *more* likely to trust it! I think Pamela's is some of the worst food I've ever had. That disgusting yellow-orange "butter" they squirt on everything makes me throw up in my mouth a little.

Pittsburgh BBQ said... 12/10/2009 9:56 AM

great stuff, thanks

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