2011 Best New Restaurant: Salt of the Earth

The mark of a great new restaurant is that it engages you on many different levels, and that’s exactly what has made Salt of the Earth a hands-down success since it opened in September.

back to Best Restaurants 2011

Salt of the Earth, Best New Restaurant 2011

Communal seating makes up the majority of the downstairs dining area at Salt of the Earth, Garfield.

Photo by Laura Petrilla

 

The industrial-chic space with a high-ceiling grabs your attention by offering an immediate view of the open stainless-steel kitchen—and even a cursory glance reveals that the intensely focused crew in black T-shirts emblazoned with NaCl (the symbol for sodium chloride) are not just slinging hash.

Start to examine the chalkboard menu on the wall that’s divided into sections called Starters, Mains and End, and you’ll be drawn in on another level: figuring out what to order. Sousa wants to play with our expectations, and it shows. A venison tartare is served with flavors of blood orange, white chocolate and Douglas fir. A decadently creamy chestnut soup is enhanced with argan oil and pumpernickel. Arctic char is paired with couscous, pomegranate, coconut and sharp-white cheddar.

Part of the buzz here comes from the excitement of diners—even servers—as complex dishes are explained or first bites are taken. There’s also the sense of having a front-seat view of the city’s increasingly progressive dining scene. Yet for all the foodie intrigue, this is a casual place. The seating is communal at the three long, wooden tables or at the eight-seat kitchen bar. More seating can be found in the separate, quieter upstairs balcony—the only area able to be reserved.

You won’t find wine snobbery or fine-dining flourishes. What you will find is Sousa’s distinctive vision for a dining experience that brings something new and entirely fresh to Pittsburgh—and we couldn’t be happier.
 


Salt of the Earth, chef/owner Kevin Sousa; 5523 Penn Ave., Garfield. Info: 412/441-7258, saltpgh.com.


Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


Hyperloop One Could Change How You Spend Your Weekends

Hyperloop One Could Change How You Spend Your Weekends

Hyperloop One plans to use high-speed pods that travel in low-pressure tubes to whisk people and freight at 700 miles an hour, cutting the travel time from Pittsburgh to Chicago to less than an hour.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Meet the Federal Galley Chefs

Meet the Federal Galley Chefs

We have the lowdown on who is cooking what in the new North Side food hall from the operators of Smallman Galley.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Best Places for Kids on Rainy Days in Pittsburgh

Best Places for Kids on Rainy Days in Pittsburgh

Read on for some under-the-radar ideas on how you and the kids can survive a rainy day this summer.

Comments


King Arthur's Sword Turns a Spot in Baldwin Into an Entertainment Destination

King Arthur's Sword Turns a Spot in Baldwin Into an Entertainment Destination

IQ Escape's new South Hills escape rooms elevate Crafthouse Stage & Grill and Legacy Lanes.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Encouraging Start Only a Start for The Steelers

Encouraging Start Only a Start for The Steelers

The season's first two victories were notched against mediocre competition. Eventually, the degree of difficulty is going to ratchet up considerably.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
#Gottahaveit: Take It To the Hoop

#Gottahaveit: Take It To the Hoop

Robert Hallett, Goldsmith, handcrafts the jewelry in his Oakmont shop.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
Kingsman Sequel Leans Into the Crazy (And Turns Out Fun)

Kingsman Sequel Leans Into the Crazy (And Turns Out Fun)

Reviews of "Kingsman: The Golden Circle," "Friend Request" and "Brad's Status," plus local movie news and notes.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Furs We Favor for a Pittsburgh Winter Wedding

Furs We Favor for a Pittsburgh Winter Wedding

Tying the knot when it will be cold outside? These Pittsburgh brides combined warmth and elegance by choosing fur.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Explore New and Historic Homes at Doors Open Pittsburgh

Explore New and Historic Homes at Doors Open Pittsburgh

The public “behind-the-scenes” event gives participants access to some of the city’s more iconic buildings — and some of Pittsburgh’s most interesting residences.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
Tuition Increases at the University of Pittsburgh

Tuition Increases at the University of Pittsburgh

School trustees voted this week to increase tuition for in-state and out-of-state students.

Comments

Edit Module

Edit Module