Best Restaurants 2014

Presenting 33 top-notch eateries that are revolutionizing Pittsburgh's food scene.



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HIGHLAND PARK: 5701 Bryant St.
  |  412/665-9000, JOSEPHTAMBELLINI.com
ITALIAN  |  $$-$$$  |  
Executive Chef/Co-owner JOSEPH TAMBELLINI

 

Joseph Tambellini and his wife, Melissa, run one of the city’s few white-tablecloth restaurants; it’s quiet, elegant and known for more than just the popular meatballs. Flavorful dishes contain classic Italian elements such as tomato, garlic, lemon and Parmesan. Seafood always is well-prepared, and veal dishes are abundant — marsala, Parmesan, Romano, piccatta and scallopini are a few choices. Chef Tambellini makes a habit of chatting with diners at their tables. The restaurant houses a traditional first floor, a slightly more contemporary second floor and private party room on the top level.



 

STRIP DISTRICT: 
2000 Smallman St.  |  412/261-6565, 
BIGBURRITO.com/KAYA
LATIN/CARIBBEAN  |  $-$$  |  
Executive Chef BENJAMIN SLOAN

 

Kaya’s cuisine melds tastes from the Caribbean Islands, South America and the Pacific. The long, colorful bar always is buzzing; there’s a special focus on rums and other Mexican and Caribbean drinks. Festive, fun food options include Jamaican jerk chicken wings with chipotle cream sauce and conch fritters. The popular signature house salad is garnished with pepitas and tossed in a lime-cilantro vinaigrette. Jerked pulled-pork quesadillas go over well with many diners. Kaya is a great destination for vegetarians, offering many meatless entrées as well as prix-fixe vegetarian dinners. The fried chicken offered Thursday evenings is well-known.



 

OAKLAND
: 214 N. Craig St.  |  412/621-2700, 
LEGUMEBISTRO.com
AMERICAN  |  $$-$$$  |  
Executive Chef/Co-owner TREVETT HOOPER

 

As stated on its website, Legume’s “continually evolving menu is the result of a seven-year-long conversation between customers, growers, cooks, servers and bartenders.” The eatery’s commitment to high-quality ingredients is evident; each ingredient reflects its natural flavor, and each dish features a nice variety of vegetables, grains and meats, many of which are locally sourced. The restaurant this year added weekday lunch service and continues to serve acclaimed burgers, pierogies and more at Butterjoint, the adjacent bar/eatery that shares a kitchen with Legume.



 

DOWNTOWN: 649 Penn Ave.
  |  412/325-7007, MEATANDPOTATOESPGH.com
AMERICAN  |  $-$$  |  
Executive Chef/Co-owner RICHARD DeShantz

 

Meat & Potatoes, a dynamic gastropub, doesn’t need much of an introduction: Richard DeShantz and Tolga Sevdik opened this spot, their first restaurant together, in 2011 to immediate acclaim. Since then it’s received attention locally and nationally and has proved its staying power with approachable but refined food, such as pork-belly tacos, fish and chips, and flat-iron steak. Appetizers, including ahi taquitos, perfectly match the bar menu of barrel-aged Manhattans and Sloe Gin Fizzes, along with many other cocktails, wines and beers. Brunch has become legendary; in order to try the brisket and eggs or French toast with bananas and bacon-almond brittle, you’ll want to make a reservation weeks in advance.

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