crested duck

Good things are happening in Beechview. Though the South Hills neighborhood is just 10 minutes from Downtown, Beechview rarely gets the same attention as neighbors like Dormont and Brookline. This Saturday, however, the third annual Taste of Beechview Food Festival will give you plenty of reasons to fall in love with it.

“We are doing everything we can to get people through a tunnel or over a bridge to check us out,” explains J.C. Ciesielski, a member of the festival’s planning committee. Though hilly Beechview is often thought of as a bedroom community for people who work Downtown, that’s hardly the whole story. Beechview is home to some true gems of the Pittsburgh food scene, many of which will be on display at this Saturday’s festival.

For a small neighborhood, the dining options in Beechview are diverse. Crested Duck Charcuterie, which got its start making small batches of salami and coppa, now offers excellent weekend dinners and brunch, where options go far beyond cured meats and artisan cheese. Slice on Broadway has a location—where else?— on Beechview’s Broadway Avenue, and it’s one of my very favorite places to get a slice of authentic New York-style pizza. And Casa Rasta, whose East Liberty location recently closed, is much loved for its brand of affordable, Mexican-Caribbean fare.

All of these restaurants and many more will be represented at the Taste of Beechview Food Festival, to be held this Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Public Parking Lot on Broadway near the Fallowfield Station. Joining the food vendors will be local artists and artisans, as well as live music from Grand Piano and Andre Costello. The event is free and the food will be affordable, allowing visitors to try lots of samples before choosing a spot for dinner later that night.

Beechview is definitely special and this Saturday, you can find out for yourself what it’s about.

In other news…

Arriba, the new wine bar from Engine House 25 Wines’ Duane Rieder, is now open on Penn Avenue in Lower Lawrenceville.

A new cocktail and craft beer bar called The Gold Mark will be opening in Lawrenceville. They will occupy the space that formerly housed Cuban restaurant Salud.

Also this Saturday is the 14th annual Beer and Gear, an outdoor festival at Ohiopyle featuring tons of local, craft beer. Is there a better Father’s Day gift than a weekend of camping and beer?

Drew Cranisky

Drew Cranisky is a writer, bartender and recent graduate of Chatham University's Food Studies program. He enjoys cats, pinball and fancy burgers.