Where We're Eating in May

This month, we're springing for Mexican tortilla soup at La Palapa, poached pear at Kaleidoscope Cafe and more.




La Palapa

Tortilla soup can be modified easily for the American palate. La Palapa returns the dish to its simple Mexican roots, starting with a homemade vegetable-herb stock. Protein is added by way of a poached egg, a treat when dipping freshly made tortilla chips. Request a side of green salsa to drizzle on top.

1925 E. Carson St., South Side; 412/586-7015, lapalapapgh.com; photo by Laura Petrilla

 

Ristorante Arlecchino

Plates of homemade pasta and salad accompany each family-style entrée, as well as a neverending supply of housemade bread slices. Milk-fed veal chop, the specialty, is offered in a few preparations; we’d recommend the pan-fried Milanese topped with crab. Chef Jonathan and Brandy Vlasic pass on their beloved marinara and vodka sauce recipes from Alla Famiglia, their first eatery; the sauce also is sold at certain area retailers.

133 Camp Lane, McMurray; 724/260-5414, arlecchinopgh.com

 


Kaleidoscope Cafe

Sub in pulled duck for pork in the common sandwich, or enjoy the poultry in cannoli pre- or post-meal. Nosh on piping-hot crab dip and pita triangles with your favorite white wine. A bonus: Depending on when you visit — and what you order — the staff might kick in a free bottle. Wise diners save room for dessert, especially for the poached pear, an occasional feature.

108 43rd St., Lawrenceville; 412/683-4004, kaleidoscopepgh.com; BYOB; photo by Dawn Biery

 

Kavsar

Cooks incorporate humanely sourced meats into an assortment of Uzbek halal dishes. For the uninitiated, each choice is approachable. Among them: The namesake entrée of sausage, eggs and vegetables; skewers of juicy, charcoal-grilled lamb; and boiled chuchvara dumplings with beef. Steer clear of the fries and instead consider soup, such as the protein- and bean-loaded borscht variation, with fresh bread.

16 Southern Ave., Mount Washington; 412/488-8708, kavsar.us

 


Wild Purveyors

Professional and home cooks alike anticipate the mid-spring arrival of morel mushrooms, favored for their unusual flavor. Brothers Cavan and Tom Patterson stock the fungi at Wild Purveyors, where you also can pick up accompaniments. Always cook morels before consuming — try sautéing them with butter.

5308 Butler St., Lawrenceville; 412/206-9453, wildpurveyorsmarket.com; photo by Chuck Beard

 

The Livermore

“Bar food” is elevated through the use of freshly baked, rustic bread, quality charcuterie picks and local produce. The Bar Marco team runs this drink haven, where the gimlets are noteworthy. Regular food features include crostini with various toppings, such as pâté, and bresaola salad. On weekdays, Juice Up 412 transforms fruits, veggies and herbs into nutritious beverages, such as the Aloe Zinger.

124 S. Highland Ave., East Liberty; 412/361-0600, twitter.com/livermorepgh



 

Meghann Walsh / Pastry Chef / Osteria 2350 and Cioppino
 

Despite her daily focus on sweets, Meghann Walsh occasionally forays into savory territory — crafting a chocolate chili-fried ice cream, for example. Walsh, who’s mastered sugar pulling, makes cakes and other special-occasion arrangements in Osteria 2350 and Cioppino’s shared kitchen.   

Guilty pleasure?
Probably anything chocolate. As long as I know it’s quality chocolate — I just get picky when I eat dessert. 

Technique that’s harder than it looks?
Making a soft caramel. Because if you don’t cook it enough, it’s not stable — it’s thick. Cook it too much and it’s too hard and not edible. [In different parts of the pot] the temperature differs . . . You know by experience and eye when it’s ready. 

Underrated tool?
Probably my chocolate bag! I like to write in chocolate. 

Most memorable dessert?
One thing I do remember: I was in Ireland a few summers ago, and everything was so fresh and local. There was this little fishing dock [that had] a little store/café [where I got] vanilla ice cream with honeycomb in it; it had a nice texture and flavor. 

photo by Laura Petrilla

 

Watch: Walsh makes a sugar flower


Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

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

The 412

Affordable Housing Part of Civic Arena Site Redevelopment

Affordable Housing Part of Civic Arena Site Redevelopment

The Pittsburgh Penguins and a St. Louis Developer hope to eventually build 1,000 residential units near PPG Paints Arena.
Watch: Phil Kessel has a Mini-Me – And He's Too Cute

Watch: Phil Kessel has a Mini-Me – And He's Too Cute

Have the Pens have found their new meme for the Stanley Cup Playoffs?
Pittsburgh Will Be Home to 22 NCAA Championship Events

Pittsburgh Will Be Home to 22 NCAA Championship Events

The ’Burgh scored more events than any other U.S. city.
Beginner’s Guide to Pittsburgh Craft Brew Week

Beginner’s Guide to Pittsburgh Craft Brew Week

A guide to PCBW for local-brewery newbies.
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


Affordable Housing Part of Civic Arena Site Redevelopment

Affordable Housing Part of Civic Arena Site Redevelopment

The Pittsburgh Penguins and a St. Louis Developer hope to eventually build 1,000 residential units near PPG Paints Arena.

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
PPG Paints Unveils New Store Concept at Bakery Square

PPG Paints Unveils New Store Concept at Bakery Square

The revamped retail store in East Liberty, the first of its kind for PPG in the country, was created with DIYers, architects and interior designers in mind.

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