Pittsburgh Chefs Share Opinions on Customers, Each Other

We polled some of the city's top chefs for an insider's look on the industry.



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ALLEGHENY WINE MIXER PHOTO BY LAURA PETRILLA
 

Where is your favorite after-work hangout?

Home [10]
Butterjoint [3]
Allegheny Wine Mixer [2]
Kelly’s Bar & Lounge
The Livermore
Squirrel Cage (or the
Squirrel Hill Cafe)
Emporio’s bar
Round Corner Cantina
Mad Mex
Acacia
Someone Else’s Bar (in Castle Shannon)
 

What ingredient did you find most inspiring this year?

Minus 8 vinegars
Seafood, specifically oysters
Lamb ribs
Octopus
Duck
Masa
High-quality olive oil
Arugula from Churchview Farm
Bee pollen
Monkfish liver
Kimchi
Ramps
Fish marrow
Eggs
Citrus, especially Meyer lemons
and blood oranges
Fermented and dried
Iberian cayenne pepper
Burrata
Matcha
Cashew milk
Live scallops
 

What is your guilty-pleasure food?

Cheetos [2]
Chicken wings [2]
French-fry-and-butter sandwich on baguette
Chicken wings, Buffalo-style, extra-crispy, blue cheese
Rigatoni alla Scamoza from Dish Osteria and Bar
Too much of everything
Taco Bell
Potato bun split-tops with hot dogs slathered in Heinz ketchup
Beef tendon
Fish and chips plus a pint of beer from Piper’s Pub
Burrito from Chipotle
Korean food
Fried foods
Chocolate ice cream
Hot dogs
Chick-fil-A
Chocolate-covered marshmallows from IKEA
Fiori’s pizza
Milk-soaked Oreos microwaved
till warm, vanilla-bean gelato, hot fudge, walnuts
Doughnuts
 


ELYSIAN FIELDS FARM PHOTO BY RENEE ROSENSTEEL
 

Who is your favorite meat supplier?

Jamison Farm [3]
Strip District Meats [3]
Elysian Fields Farm [2]
Heritage Farm [2]
Samuels Seafood
Clarion Farms
Weiss Provisions
True World Foods
Jo-Mar Provisions
Jubilee Hilltop Ranch
Michael’s Meats
Curtze Food Service
Butcher on Butler
Serenity Hills Farm
Thoma’s Meat Market
Miller’s Meat Market
 

What’s always in your fridge?

Pickles [4]
Cheese [3]
Hot sauce [3]
Butter [3]
Eggs [2]
Kimchi [2]
Mustard [2]
Beer [2]
Pancetta
Pecorino Romano
Soffrito
Roasted garlic
Good San Marzano gravy in the freezer
Anchovies
White wine
Cured meats
Coconut water
Grapes
Kid provisions
Dr. Pepper
Rendered pig fat
Asian vegetables
Scallions
Fresh garlic
Sriracha
Fresh berries
Almond milk
Kale
Whole milk
Kefir
 


TAKO photo by hal b. klein

 

What is your favorite development in the Pittsburgh restaurant scene this year?

High-quality bakeries opening [2]
Growth of downtown as a dining destination [2]
Food trucks [2]
Multiple Szechuan restaurants
No clue
All of the James Beard recognition
You see a lot more Pittsburgh chefs branching out and establishing their own identity
Community events and collaborations such as the backyard BBQ and Italian BBQ
Some really great ethnic restaurants, Nak Won Garden, Chengdu Gourmet, etc.
Looking forward to täkō
412 Food Rescue
Artisanal breweries
More and more restaurants sourcing locally and presenting these ingredients with elegant simplicity
International camaraderie through social media
 

What ingredient is overused?

Pork belly [4] (Note: 3 qualified that they also love it)
Brussels sprouts [4]
Microgreens as garnish [2]
In-house charcuterie
Paper-thin radish or beet as garnish
Sriracha
Kale
Ground meat
Chipotle pepper
Ramps
Many
Pickled mustard seeds
 


SPAK BROTHERS PHOTO BY HEATHER MULL
 

Where is your go-to takeout place?

Spak Brothers [2]
Gaucho Parrilla Argentina [2]
How Lee
China Palace
Jade Grill
Sesame Inn (the North Hills location)
East End Food Co-op salad bar
Salem’s Market & Grill 
Taipei Tokyo
Korea Garden
Thai Gourmet
BRGR
Beto’s Pizza
Ramen Bar
Noodlehead

What is Pittsburgh’s restaurant scene missing? What would you like to see here?

Late-night dining [4]
Ramen [2]
“Ethnic” food [2]
Mexican [2]
Sushi
Better non-Thai Southeast Asian
A Derek Stevens restaurant
Casual but delicious Italian
Formal/white tablecloth dining
More of many things
Women chefs
Lounge with a DJ and good food
Better overall dining culture with better-educated diners
Large, year-round farmers market
Nerd bars
 

 

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2015 Best Restaurants

The Right Recipe: Spy Inside 5 Killer Kitchens

The Right Recipe: Spy Inside 5 Killer Kitchens

Executive chefs often are given much of the credit for their restaurants’ success, but that praise would be hard to bestow if each did not lead an outstanding kitchen brigade.
Pittsburgh Chefs Share Opinions on Customers, Each Other

Pittsburgh Chefs Share Opinions on Customers, Each Other

We polled some of the city's top chefs for an insider's look on the industry.
2015 Best New Dining Experience: The Wine Room at Bar Marco

2015 Best New Dining Experience: The Wine Room at Bar Marco

Because the room seats only 10 people, you can book it for your own special event or share it with other people who are bound to become new friends by the end of the evening.
Best Restaurants 2015

Best Restaurants 2015

Which 33 establishments did our independent Restaurant Review Panel include among its top picks this year? Find them here.
Special Events that Help Shape Pittsburgh's Food Scene

Special Events that Help Shape Pittsburgh's Food Scene

Our independent Restaurant Review Panel wanted to highlight a number of special dining events this year that enhanced the city’s culinary experiences.
2015 Delicious Design Winner: Sienna Mercato is Three Restaurants in One

2015 Delicious Design Winner: Sienna Mercato is Three Restaurants in One

Each restaurant merits commendation for its design; together they are one of the most impressive dining spaces in the city.
2015 Delicious Design Winner: Not One Bad Seat at Altius

2015 Delicious Design Winner: Not One Bad Seat at Altius

The space formerly occupied by the Georgetown Inn has undergone an incredible transformation.
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The 412

Meet Rescued Animals at Carnegie Museum of Natural History

The new Live Animal Encounters program introduces museum visitors to rescued wildlife.

Food Truck Park Coming To Millvale

The venue will feature food truck stalls, beer vendors and entertainment.

New Pennzoil Ad Shows the Dodge Demon Demolishing the Streets of Pittsburgh

Watch champion drifter Rhys Millen turn Pittsburgh's streets into his own private raceway.

The Best Seat in Pittsburgh for the Solar Eclipse

If you are geeking out about the upcoming celestial event, but unable to travel to an area where the sun will be completely blocked out, the Carnegie Science Center is the right viewing spot for you.

Tour the Pittsburgh Zoo with Its New Interactive App

The app tracks your real-time location in the zoo, while offering games and information about the animals.

Tour Pittsburgh’s Hidden Gems with Expanded Doors Open Event

The second annual Doors Open Pittsburgh has announced the list of buildings it will showcase on Oct. 7 and 8.
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Tuition Increases at the University of Pittsburgh

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