It’s the season to feast! As the temperature drops and the days grow shorter, boost your mood by filling your belly. The past few months have seen a boom in restaurant openings with a lot more on the way. You can support these fledgling businesses by taking a seat at a new bar, ordering from an unfamiliar eatery or starting your day at a different cafe.
Taco ‘bout a long wait! Gordo’s, with its Mexican street food and a dizzying array of tequila, is now open with a limited menu from 4 to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
After just two years of operation, Con Alma opened a second restaurant and jazz lounge Downtown and was listed in Esquire’s Best Bars. Now the OG site is rolling out a fully vegetarian menu. It should be noted that several jazz musicians — including Sun Ra, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock and Ornette Coleman — were herbivores for at least part of their legendary lives.
When Cafetano opened on Oct. 16, it introduced Pittsburghers to Honduran coffee and hospitality. The Cuculiza family — who own a coffee plantation — are experts on the beverage, along with fresh pastries, wraps and paninis. Want proof? Ask Carl Allison. The local businessman visited Cafetano cafe in Central America and helped open the doors to the Steel City incarnation. Great souvenir, man.
Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group’s second täkō location is 5,000 square feet of eye-popping awesomeness. The menu is a fusion of Japanese and Mexican cuisine. Customers can dine indoors, on the patio or order takeout bites from the counter.
In addition to vino and non-alcoholic selections, the bodega serves food that’s nostalgic with a modern spin. Try the McKees Rocks Red pizza, Chef Kevin Sousa’s culinary tribute to his old stomping grounds.
Dagny’s is a tiny breakfast and lunch joint, but its namesake serves big portions, from towering sandwiches to decadent desserts that you’ll need a friend to help you finish. Call in your order or drop by to chat with owner Dagny Como while she fixes you something good and filling.
When celebrity chef Guy Fieri visits Pittsburgh, he usually makes a stop at Kelly O’s. The local institution has been featured on his show “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” multiple times and it now has multiple locations. Hit up Wexford, the Strip District or the new Warrendale site for some dippy eggs, mush with crumbled bacon (Fieri’s fav!) or haluski.
Jen Urich’s 160-square-foot restaurant run out of a shipping container now has a brick-and-mortar companion that’s open year-round. It’s a takeout spot, general store and production facility, where Urich and her crew whip up bagels, sandwiches, vegan ice cream and botanical beverages.
If sipping Pennsylvania libations in a suburban subterranean environment while listening to live music is your aesthetic, you’re gonna love Hartwood Wine Cave.
You can get south-of-the-border fare on the border of Marshall and Cranberry townships. Tepache is named after a fermented drink made from the peel and the rind of pineapples. Order one to wash down some of the restaurant’s traditional favorites (co-owners Jovanny and Chuy Segoviano hail from Guadalajara, Mexico) or modern takes on elote, yucca and queso.
Brian Peltz grew up devouring Madsen Donuts on family vacations to Geneva-on-the-Lake, Ohio. He loves the pastries so much that he and his wife Milica opened a location closer to home. Get there early to grab a dozen (or more) doughnuts, from traditional glazed to the fan favorite cream stick topped with chocolate and filled with homemade marshmallow-based cream.
Want fine dining without formalwear? Plated Chef Adam Stayrook prides himself on making high-end meals that are visually stunning and tasty in a casual atmosphere. BYOB and relax with a gourmet dish.
Pittsburgh has so many breweries, it’s hard to hit them all. SIP Taproom makes it easier by featuring a rotating selection of local-only drafts. You can also get wines from around the world and small bites such as cheese boards, hot dogs and paninis. Eat, sip and be merry while supporting Steel City suds makers.
The Dancing Gnome crew has a shiny new taproom ready for patrons. The 10,000-square-foot facility is just a few blocks from the original location, which will serve as the brewery’s office space from here on out.
Grainne Trainor’s neighborhood tavern offers Irish hospitality and comfort food in Bloomfield.