Review: Burgh’ers

Venture to Burgh’ers to find gourmet beef patties, Southern-inspired brunch dishes and a wide selection of craft beer.




Photos by Laura Petrilla
 

 

Nothing’s more fun than discovering a great place to dine in an unexpected location. That’s the case with Burgh’ers, an eatery in Harmony’s unassuming Creekside Plaza that specializes in organic, grass-fed beef.

Open since 2010, Burgh’ers has developed a following among a diverse group of people — families with young kids, local oil and gas “barons,” residents at nearby senior communities and hip city folks.

After walking inside, you are struck by the effortlessly trendy interior, classic ’60s rock playing on the speakers and the lack of sports on TV (instead, you’ll find culinary programming). You see then why Burgh’ers is not your run-of-the-mill strip-mall spot. 

“Truly, I opened this place because I love burgers,” says chef/owner Fiore Moletz, a Shaler native. “There’s something about them; sometimes you just need a burger. But our restaurant is also farm-to-table. It’s important to me that my burgers [are] high-quality and healthy.”

Indeed, the burgers are fantastic, created with quality meat sourced from Armstrong Farms and topped with housemade condiments.

There are a number of pre-made burger combinations, including the Harmony ($9.99), topped with cheddar cheese, fresh horseradish, caramelized onions, jalapeños and barbecue aïoli; this choice packs sweet and spicy flavors. Another fun option is the rich, decadent Polish Hill ($9.99) featuring cheddar, caramelized onions, a fried housemade pierogi and mayonnaise. Vegetarians should enjoy the grilled portobello cap with onion, pickle, romaine, tomato and honey mustard. All patties are served on brioche from BreadWorks.
 


For those looking to indulge, Burgh’ers offers homemade desserts — including cheesecakes, cream pies and doughnuts.

 


If you would rather build your own burger, prices start at $7.99 for a regular (5 ounces) and $5.99 for a mini (2.5 ounces). Load up on free and low-cost ($0.75-$0.95) toppings, ranging from cheeses and condiments to avocado and grilled pineapple. Burgers come with your choice of mixed greens or “skinny” fries, which are thinly sliced and seasoned with salt and pepper; for an extra charge, you can get rosemary fries for $1, or mac ’n’ cheese or cole slaw for $2. The macaroni and mayo-based slaw are plain but satisfying.

Deviating from burgers, there’s the old-school chili-cheese dog ($7.99) with chopped onions, cheese sauce and beanless chili. Smith’s Provisions in Erie, Pa., supplies the beef-pork frankfurters. After that, if you have room left in your stomach, try the homemade dessert ($4-$6); options change daily but may include biscotti, cheesecake, cream pie or doughnuts.

Burgh’ers recently introduced Sunday brunch, which is assuredly worth your time. Among the Southern-influenced entrées is the plate of chicken and waffles ($9.99). Waffles are amped up with jalapeños and cheddar and topped with a light brushing of bourbon maple syrup; the lightly breaded chicken has a crunchy, spicy exterior and a tender interior.

Another winner is the shrimp and grits ($9.99), featuring a base of buttery grits topped with a half-dozen peppery shrimp and dressed with a nontraditional but yummy tomato cream sauce. The buttermilk biscuits ($3) are rich and flaky.

Get your burger fix by ordering the Morningside brunch burger ($9.99) with cheese, bacon and a “sunny” egg.

To complement the food, Burgh’ers is committed to offering local beers and craft cocktails. Brews on tap include varieties from Full Pint, Victory and Fat Head’s. Craft cocktails cost $8 and include the restaurant’s signature barrel-aged Manhattan made with Wigle whiskey and housemade bitters. On Sundays, there are also modern interpretations of classic brunch cocktails, including bellinis. Although I enjoyed the flavors I tried, each one contained too much liquor for my taste.

If you are in the neighborhood, try Moletz’s newest venture if you’re not planning to eat at Burgh’ers. Next door, Della Terra (Italian for “of the Earth”) serves food from various regions of Italy. “As much as I love Burgh’ers, I started to miss cooking a wider variety of foods,” says Moletz. So he hired experienced chef Josh Bonazza to oversee the kitchen at Burgh’ers while he cooks at Della Terra. “Our goal in everything we do is to give people the best possible meal experience with the most local, farm-to-table ingredients we can achieve,” says Moletz. 



 

Chef/Owner Fiore Moletz | Burgh’ers
 

How does your place compare to other Pittsburgh burger spots?  
[When] we opened, there were very few really good burgers in Pittsburgh. We opened around the same time as some of the other specialty places [such as] BRGR and Burgatory. Honestly, I enjoy eating burgers at all these places.

What makes your burger special?  
We are truly farm-to-table. We have a very close relationship with our farmer, [whom] we call every Monday to discuss what we need; he literally butchers and ages our meat to order. When we started, we sat down and tasted all sorts of cuts of beef to get the mix we like. We use the highest-quality cuts to achieve both a buttery and grassy flavor.

What do you like about your location?  
We originally were going to [set up] in Lawrenceville; however, we started looking around here [in Harmony] and realized that this is where the farms are located. In this location, we are only 20 minutes from our beef supplier, Armstrong Farms in Saxonburg. Our daily soups are based on what we get in our [community-supported agriculture subscription] from Kretschmann Farms, which is only a six-minute drive. We also get a lot of our other products from the Cider House Farm Market, which is less than a few miles away. In fact, I like being in the middle of farm country so much that my fiancée [former Burgh’ers general manager Michelle Fink] and I recently purchased a home in Prospect, less than 10 minutes from the restaurant, where we hope to grow produce.

You did not attend culinary school. How did you learn to cook?
I always loved to cook. I started working in restaurants when I was about 15 as a busboy. I had great experiences at Rico’s, Tambellini’s and Silvioni’s when I was younger. Then I worked at Lidia’s in the Strip [District] for five years until I became sous chef. There, I was mentored by my friend Craig Richards. I learned a lot from Lidia [Bastianich], as well as all the visiting chefs, [including] Mario Batali. I also worked at Il Pizzaiolo in Mt. Lebanon, where I was mentored by Ron Molinaro. I have been very fortunate to learn from so many talented people.

[100 Perry Highway, Suite 105, Harmony; 724/473-0710, burghersinc.com]
 

Gallery

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in April

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in April

This month's best bets in the ’Burgh.
Take a Hike: 10 of the Best Trails in the Pittsburgh Area

Take a Hike: 10 of the Best Trails in the Pittsburgh Area

Lace up your sneakers or hiking boots and head outdoors for 10 great walks for spring.
412 Food Rescue: Revolutionary Repurposing

412 Food Rescue: Revolutionary Repurposing

Local nonprofit organization 412 Food Rescue is taking food that otherwise would be tossed aside and connecting it with those in need through-of-the-moment technology.
Spring Fashion: The Height of White

Spring Fashion: The Height of White

Fashion is white haute this spring with the best looks from local stores.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in April

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in April

This month's best bets in the ’Burgh.
Take a Hike: 10 of the Best Trails in the Pittsburgh Area

Take a Hike: 10 of the Best Trails in the Pittsburgh Area

Lace up your sneakers or hiking boots and head outdoors for 10 great walks for spring.
412 Food Rescue: Revolutionary Repurposing

412 Food Rescue: Revolutionary Repurposing

Local nonprofit organization 412 Food Rescue is taking food that otherwise would be tossed aside and connecting it with those in need through-of-the-moment technology.
Spring Fashion: The Height of White

Spring Fashion: The Height of White

Fashion is white haute this spring with the best looks from local stores.
Restaurant Review: Pork & Beans

Restaurant Review: Pork & Beans

The latest restaurant from the Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group brings Texas-style smoked meats and more to Downtown.
Daytripping: Brave the Cave

Daytripping: Brave the Cave

Go subterranean at Laurel Caverns, the largest cave in Pennsylvania.
Edit Module
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


‘The Good Wife’s’ Zach Grenier Appears on the Pittsburgh Stage

‘The Good Wife’s’ Zach Grenier Appears on the Pittsburgh Stage

Grenier on playing the dream role of Willy Loman, coming to Pittsburgh and performing at the renowned Pittsburgh Public Theater.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Scratch Food & Beverage Has a New Executive Chef

Scratch Food & Beverage Has a New Executive Chef

Brandon Blumenfeld introduces an American gastropub menu at the Troy Hill bar.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Five Inexpensive But Memorable Date Spots in Pittsburgh

Five Inexpensive But Memorable Date Spots in Pittsburgh

These spots are tailored for couples who are looking for a simple, chill night out on Valentine’s Day (or any other day). If your significant other isn’t the type to be wooed by expensive wines and chocolates, this is the list for you.

Comments


Dive Bar & Grille Expands to South Side, Remains Charming

Dive Bar & Grille Expands to South Side, Remains Charming

The latest outpost of the small, Wexford-born chain isn't flashy, but offers good beer and grub.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
A Life Well Lived: Dan Rooney's Humility and Humanity

A Life Well Lived: Dan Rooney's Humility and Humanity

Delivering the Homily at Rooney's funeral, Cardinal Donald Wuerl acknowledged a longstanding Rooney philosophical belief: “You can get anything done if you don’t care who gets the credit.”

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Pittsburgh on a Plate

Pittsburgh on a Plate

The way to a beer lover’s heart is mapped out on notNeutral’s plate, which highlights Pittsburgh breweries (and other points of interest) across the city.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
A Refreshing Action Flick and a Redundant Thriller

A Refreshing Action Flick and a Redundant Thriller

Reviews of "Free Fire," "Unforgettable" and "The Promise," plus local movie news and notes.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Planning Proposals: The Element of Surprise

Planning Proposals: The Element of Surprise

This couple’s proposal story really takes the cake.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Rare Plants, Accessories, Up for Grabs at 2017 Garden Marketplace

Rare Plants, Accessories, Up for Grabs at 2017 Garden Marketplace

Hosted by the Penn State Master Gardeners, the free event, which includes the local daffodil society’s annual show, features exclusive and hard-to-find flowers, shrubs, fruit and vegetable plants and other garden accessories from a variety of vendors.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
A-Rod to Talk Baseball and Steroids at Slippery Rock

A-Rod to Talk Baseball and Steroids at Slippery Rock

Considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time, Alex Rodriguez also is one of the league's more controversial stars.

Comments