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Spicy kofta cashew cheese melt on sourdough with watermelon radishes at B52 Cafe in Pittsburgh
Spicy kofta cashew cheese melt on sourdough with watermelon radishes at B52 Cafe in Pittsburgh
B52 Cafe/Facebook

The Philly Weekender’s Guide to Eating and Drinking in Pittsburgh

The Steel City is an excellent in-state destination for sushi, pierogies, and good old-fashioned diner fare — and it’s only a 5-hour drive from Philly

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Spicy kofta cashew cheese melt on sourdough with watermelon radishes at B52 Cafe in Pittsburgh
| B52 Cafe/Facebook

Sometimes a nearby weekend getaway is just what you need — and what better place to visit than another much-cherished city in this vast Commonwealth? With a vibrant arts and music scene, Pittsburgh has become more than the vision of a steel town of its past — roughly a five-hour drive from Philly, it’s a great in-state destination to add to your road trip list. There’s plenty to do — visit one of our many museums or have some fun on a river of your choosing — and some beautiful places to eat. Stopping by for the weekend? Here’s a list of restaurants and bars where you’ll find the essence of the Steel City.

The latest CDC guidance for vaccinated diners during the COVID-19 outbreak is here; dining out still carries risks for vaccinated and unvaccinated diners and workers. Please be aware of changing local rules, and check individual restaurant websites for any additional restrictions such as mask requirements. Find a local vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Umami

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202 38th St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 224-2354
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Umami is a cool spot situated in the Lawrenceville neighborhood of Pittsburgh, an area that has a reputation for great food and drinks. It’s a warm, dimly lit dine-in restaurant and bar that often hosts DJs, so you can listen to good tunes while you eat. The menu has a host of traditional Japanese street food that you can choose from, including sushi, ramen, and gyoza. Umami also has a nice selection of gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian dishes, like chawanmushi and miso ramen. Umami changes out its menu often, so you can always get something fresh and inspired.

2. B52 Café

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5202 Butler St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 781-5204
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For vegans and the vegan-adjacent, B52 Cafe will be the spot. B52 offers delicious Mediterranean-inspired food but with all vegan ingredients. They have a popular breakfast menu that includes a tofu scramble, kofta scramble, and a twist on avocado toast with tahini and black sesame seeds. B52 makes all of its sauces in house and the breads for the sandwiches are made in partnership with Allegro Hearth Bakery. B52 is still only open for takeout, so you can grab food and hop on over to Arsenal Park to enjoy, when the weather is nice.

3. Pusadee's Garden

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5319 Butler St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 252-2683
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Located on busy Butler Street, Pusadee’s Garden is an experience you won’t want to miss during your time in Pittsburgh. A popular destination for Thai food, Pusadee’s has a colorful menu that consists of fresh salads, delicious curries, seafood, and roti. Pusadee’s also has a great drink menu that even includes non-alcoholic cocktails, if you don’t imbibe. 

4. APTEKA

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4606 Penn Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
(412) 251-0189
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Apteka launched from a pierogi pop-up night and has expanded into a full Central and Eastern European focused restaurant. Apteka is all vegan and boasts bold enough flavors that you won’t feel like you’re missing out. The pierogies are a popular item that go beyond the traditional potato and cheese or potato and onion versions: there is a wild mushroom stuffed pierogi and others with potato and cabbage. They also have a great wine and cocktail list.

5. Soju

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4923 Penn Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
(412) 956-7699
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Soju makes Korean-American fare with a robust selection of cocktails, beer, wine, and soju. Soju has a welcoming atmosphere, and chef and owner Simon Chough has a knack for creating inventive menu items — popular dishes include the “Killer Tofu” and the Korean fried chicken. The drink menu features bright and vivid cocktails like soju punch, the Purple Rain (a drink with Plymouth gin, lavender pea flower soju, lemongrass, and lemon juice), and cachaca sangria.

6. Ritter's Diner

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5221 Baum Blvd
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
(412) 682-4852
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Pittsburgh has a host of restaurants that have opened in the past ten years that feature exciting menu items and fun drinks, but there are just as many beloved local businesses that have long histories within their communities. Ritter’s Diner, which has been open for over 65 years, is the place to grab breakfast as you’re heading in or out of town. Ritter’s has pretty standard diner fare like pancakes, french toast, and bacon, but it’s the stake they’ve placed in the community that keeps many coming back. If you like an especially sweet breakfast, try the s’mores pancakes. If you lean more savory, the Florentine omelette might be more your style.

7. Redstart Roasters

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224 N Euclid Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
(412) 695-3667
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If you’re looking for a great place to grab a cup of coffee, Redstart has you covered. This cafe opened right around the time the pandemic hit, but it quickly captured the hearts of Pittsburgh’s residents. What makes Redstart so good? Well, the coffee is great for one, but there’s also a great deal of planning that went into the set up of the place. With plenty of room to sit and work, or sit and chat, and tempting sweets, this coffee shop is sure to warm you up. This place has a great vibe and even better staff.

8. Kelly's Bar & Lounge

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6012 Centre Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
(412) 363-6012
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Kelly’s is a Pittsburgh staple where you can get great cocktails for an even better price. An East Liberty stalwart, Pittsburghers love to pass the time t at Kelly’s on a typical Friday night. With a happy hour that boasts $5 cocktails, you can’t go wrong. This bar also has great food — like fried pickles, burgers, and tuna melts — that you can enjoy while you have a couple drinks.

9. Casa Brasil

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5904 Bryant St
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
(412) 404-7573
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One of the few places where you can get authentic Brazilian food in Pittsburgh, Casa Brasil is a quaint restaurant located on a quiet street in the Highland Park neighborhood. The food and drinks are simple and crafted with care, and are sure to please out-of towners. If you go, try the pao de queijo: cheese bread rolls made with tapioca flour, or the chicken stroganoff. Bonus: There’s also a vegetarian version.

1. Umami

202 38th St, Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Umami is a cool spot situated in the Lawrenceville neighborhood of Pittsburgh, an area that has a reputation for great food and drinks. It’s a warm, dimly lit dine-in restaurant and bar that often hosts DJs, so you can listen to good tunes while you eat. The menu has a host of traditional Japanese street food that you can choose from, including sushi, ramen, and gyoza. Umami also has a nice selection of gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian dishes, like chawanmushi and miso ramen. Umami changes out its menu often, so you can always get something fresh and inspired.

202 38th St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201

2. B52 Café

5202 Butler St, Pittsburgh, PA 15201

For vegans and the vegan-adjacent, B52 Cafe will be the spot. B52 offers delicious Mediterranean-inspired food but with all vegan ingredients. They have a popular breakfast menu that includes a tofu scramble, kofta scramble, and a twist on avocado toast with tahini and black sesame seeds. B52 makes all of its sauces in house and the breads for the sandwiches are made in partnership with Allegro Hearth Bakery. B52 is still only open for takeout, so you can grab food and hop on over to Arsenal Park to enjoy, when the weather is nice.

5202 Butler St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201

3. Pusadee's Garden

5319 Butler St, Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Located on busy Butler Street, Pusadee’s Garden is an experience you won’t want to miss during your time in Pittsburgh. A popular destination for Thai food, Pusadee’s has a colorful menu that consists of fresh salads, delicious curries, seafood, and roti. Pusadee’s also has a great drink menu that even includes non-alcoholic cocktails, if you don’t imbibe. 

5319 Butler St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201

4. APTEKA

4606 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

Apteka launched from a pierogi pop-up night and has expanded into a full Central and Eastern European focused restaurant. Apteka is all vegan and boasts bold enough flavors that you won’t feel like you’re missing out. The pierogies are a popular item that go beyond the traditional potato and cheese or potato and onion versions: there is a wild mushroom stuffed pierogi and others with potato and cabbage. They also have a great wine and cocktail list.

4606 Penn Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15224

5. Soju

4923 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

Soju makes Korean-American fare with a robust selection of cocktails, beer, wine, and soju. Soju has a welcoming atmosphere, and chef and owner Simon Chough has a knack for creating inventive menu items — popular dishes include the “Killer Tofu” and the Korean fried chicken. The drink menu features bright and vivid cocktails like soju punch, the Purple Rain (a drink with Plymouth gin, lavender pea flower soju, lemongrass, and lemon juice), and cachaca sangria.

4923 Penn Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15224

6. Ritter's Diner

5221 Baum Blvd, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

Pittsburgh has a host of restaurants that have opened in the past ten years that feature exciting menu items and fun drinks, but there are just as many beloved local businesses that have long histories within their communities. Ritter’s Diner, which has been open for over 65 years, is the place to grab breakfast as you’re heading in or out of town. Ritter’s has pretty standard diner fare like pancakes, french toast, and bacon, but it’s the stake they’ve placed in the community that keeps many coming back. If you like an especially sweet breakfast, try the s’mores pancakes. If you lean more savory, the Florentine omelette might be more your style.

5221 Baum Blvd
Pittsburgh, PA 15224

7. Redstart Roasters

224 N Euclid Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

If you’re looking for a great place to grab a cup of coffee, Redstart has you covered. This cafe opened right around the time the pandemic hit, but it quickly captured the hearts of Pittsburgh’s residents. What makes Redstart so good? Well, the coffee is great for one, but there’s also a great deal of planning that went into the set up of the place. With plenty of room to sit and work, or sit and chat, and tempting sweets, this coffee shop is sure to warm you up. This place has a great vibe and even better staff.

224 N Euclid Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15206

8. Kelly's Bar & Lounge

6012 Centre Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Kelly’s is a Pittsburgh staple where you can get great cocktails for an even better price. An East Liberty stalwart, Pittsburghers love to pass the time t at Kelly’s on a typical Friday night. With a happy hour that boasts $5 cocktails, you can’t go wrong. This bar also has great food — like fried pickles, burgers, and tuna melts — that you can enjoy while you have a couple drinks.

6012 Centre Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15206

9. Casa Brasil

5904 Bryant St, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

One of the few places where you can get authentic Brazilian food in Pittsburgh, Casa Brasil is a quaint restaurant located on a quiet street in the Highland Park neighborhood. The food and drinks are simple and crafted with care, and are sure to please out-of towners. If you go, try the pao de queijo: cheese bread rolls made with tapioca flour, or the chicken stroganoff. Bonus: There’s also a vegetarian version.

5904 Bryant St
Pittsburgh, PA 15206

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