Want to make your mother proud? Go to chef Mike Godlewski’s restaurant when it opens this summer on the North Side.
EYV, which stands for Eat Your Veggies, will take that parental mantra to the next level by offering plant-based dishes made with ingredients from local farms and purveyors.
Don’t fret, carnivores! The 1,300-square-foot spot at 424 E. Ohio St. won’t be exclusively vegetarian or vegan. The chef plans to include meat and seafood on the seasonal menu.
EYV will seat about 45 diners in a space that Godlewski describes as rustically elegant, with a chef’s counter, exposed brickwork and other touches that will make you feel like you’re a guest at his home. There will be a full-service bar and additional seating on the second floor.
In addition to feeding patrons healthful meals, Godlewski is committed to making his employees happy, too. He wants to provide a living wage, medical, dental and vision care, paid time off, a 401k, a five-day workweek with consecutive days off, educational development and a profit-sharing program. EYV will be a tip-free establishment, allowing Godlewski to pay his staff as the pros they are trained to be.
Godlewski started his own training at a young age.
He grew up in the Wilkes-Barre area, where he got a job as a dishwasher at his hometown pizza joint. When the cook didn’t show up for work one day, Godlewski helmed the kitchen and fell in love with it. He went to culinary school at Luzerne County Community College and moved to Pittsburgh in 2009, just as the local restaurant scene was starting to boom.
Godlewski worked as a sous chef at the Duquesne Club Downtown and helped to open The Foundry Table & Tap on the North Shore.
He decided he wanted to open his own place right before Covid struck. During the pandemic, he returned to the Duquesne Club while perfecting his EYV business plan.
Godlewski is in good company on East Ohio Street, which is slowly becoming one of Pittsburgh’s favorite restaurant rows, with neighbors such as Fig & Ash, Siempre Algo and The Coop Chicken and Waffles.
Get Healthy Pittsburgh!
The arrival of EYV coincides with the introduction of Get Healthy Pittsburgh!, a plant-based diet initiative to improve the cardiovascular health of residents.
Humane Action Pittsburgh has partnered with PLANTSTRONG, a meal planning company, to host a cardiovascular health challenge that kicks off with an event on May 4 at 6 p.m. The informational session, which is open to people who register in advance and pay the program fee, will be held at The Priory Hotel on the North Side and includes a food sampling and cooking demonstration by PLANTSTRONG founder Rip Esselstyn.
After signing up online, people of all ages will take the seven-day challenge and eat a heart-healthy, plant-based diet for one full week. The challenge includes recipes and online coaching. Early bird registration is $47. A limited number of scholarships are available by applying online.
Before and after the challenge, participants will receive biometric screenings to measure weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and fasting blood sugar. The challenge aims to demonstrate measurable improvement in as little as one week. There will be a closing celebration on May 18.
“This challenge is the perfect way to teach individuals about the benefits of eating more plants and how much power they really have over their personal health,” says Natalie Ahwesh, executive director of Humane Action Pittsburgh.