Where We’re Eating in February

The only cure for the cold-weather blues is Prantl’s red-velvet cupcakes. Or Dor-Stop’s oatmeal-batter pancakes.




Prantl’s Bakery

When considering sweets to buy for your beloved for Valentine’s Day, remember that small classics can be just as swoon-worthy as large ones. Case in point: Prantl’s red-velvet cups. Bakers finish cupcakes with swirls of cream-cheese frosting and a tiny cherub, adding indulgent flavor and a seasonal touch. Surprise your sweetheart with these miniature delights.

5525 Walnut St., Shadyside; 412/621-2092, prantlsbakery.com

 

Kabob-G Grill

Get your fill of chicken and beef schwarma by ordering a platter to tackle on your own or with your dining companion; the filet mignon slices are best enjoyed over lettuce with a squeeze of lemon. There’s an assortment of starters — such as loobyeh, made of green beans; and sleek, a mixture of spinach, black-eyed peas, bulgur and onion — as well as dinners. If ordering the baked or raw beef kibbee, be sure to request the cucumber yogurt, which is a prime complement.

3821 Willow Ave., Castle Shannon; 412/343-3383, kabob-g.com

 

Benjamins Western Avenue Burger Bar

When you want to slide under the radar and enjoy a solo meal or catch up with a friend, head here for the laid-back atmosphere and craft beer. The candied jalapeño cream cheese-bacon burger does the trick when you’re famished; a few slices of crispy bacon sit atop a hand-shaped beef or veggie patty slathered with the namesake condiment. Curried cabbage slaw, one of several side options, provides tang and spice to complete the burger’s flavors. If you’ve got a mean appetite, upgrade your burger to a double-decker and consider ordering some bar snacks.

900 Western Ave., North Side; 412/224-2163, benjaminspgh.com

 


Allegheny Wine Mixer

Think about switching up your date-night plans. As snow falls, you’ll want to be somewhere warm and cozy. Allegheny Wine Mixer fits the bill and offers an impressive vino menu — with sparkling, red and white varieties — plus an assortment of charcuterie offerings. We recommend trying the almonds; prosciutto from Parma Sausage Co.; and a plate of the goat, sheep and cow’s milk cheeses, served with La Gourmandine bread.

5326 Butler St., Lawrenceville; 412/252-2337, alleghenywinemixer.com

 

Thai Cottage

Skip straight to lesser-known dishes — for example, the potak seafood or pumpkin soups. The menu at Thai Cottage, situated in the former space of Green Mango, covers a fair amount of ground — but the treasures are tucked in its curry and noodle/rice sections. Panang curry comes in a pool of coconut-milk broth with your choice of meat. As with other Thai spots, you’re asked to select a spice level on a 10-point scale; choose wisely because the food packs a punch. Keep in mind that lunch portions are generous; if ordering dinner, you’ll likely have leftovers.

1109 S. Braddock Ave., Regent Square; 412/241-8424, thaicottage.com

 


Dor-Stop Restaurant

After trying the oatmeal-batter pancakes here, you’ll realize that many others are inferior. Offering choices including apple-walnut, strawberry and banana, Dor-Stop makes the fluffy, plate-sized cakes in a jiffy and plates them with syrup, although it’s usually not needed. In this weekend hot spot, tables are scarce, service is quick and food is all-around hearty. “Bob’s specialty” — eggs and German-style potato cakes with toast — suits those who prefer savory fare for breakfast. We’re big on the A.M. lineup, but if you seek something more suitable for mid-day, the turkey and veggie melts are solid picks.

1430 Potomac Ave., Dormont; 412/561-9320, dorstoprestaurant.com



 

Mark Edwards learned chocolate-making techniques from three generations of relatives before him. He comes up with new confection concepts for Edward Marc Chocolatier — including last year’s hit addition, Snappers. Mark and his siblings, Chris and Dana, run Edward Marc and The Milk Shake Factory. While they aim to remain on the forefront of industry trends, they pride themselves on using their family’s original 100-year-old chocolate recipe. Keep an eye out for macaroon almonds, set to debut this month.   

Dark, milk or white chocolate?
I don’t discriminate. But if I had to choose just one to take with me when stranded on a desert island, it would be dark chocolate.

Little-known fact about chocolatiers?
We’re a tight-knit community. We’re passionate about life and take chances. 

Best use of chocolate?
Chocolate is ubiquitous. It can go with everything. It doesn’t matter what form — just as long as it’s used to satisfy that craving. 

Chocolate-dipping tip for novices?
Just go for it. Don’t feel that it’s too overwhelming. You can pretty much cover anything in chocolate. Get creative.

509 Cavitt Ave., Trafford; 877/488-1808, edwardmarc.com. Products also at The Milk Shake Factory, 1705 E. Carson St., South Side; 412/488-1808


Photos by Laura Petrilla

 

Hot Reads

Made in Pittsburgh

Made in Pittsburgh

The city of steel always has been known for its industry – what we make. Today, that defining characteristic expands beyond manufacturing into every aspect of modern life: to technology, clothing, home goods and unique food and drink products as well.
Ed Piskor is Pittsburgh's Hip-Hop Historian

Ed Piskor is Pittsburgh's Hip-Hop Historian

While he can walk largely unrecognized in his hometown, comic-book artist Ed Piskor of Munhall continues to win critical acclaim and international fame with “Hip Hop Family Tree,” a series of graphic novels telling the story of hip-hop music.
Review: Sienna Mercato

Review: Sienna Mercato

Matthew Porco, one of our Chefs of the Year, designs the menus at Sienna Mercato's downtown establishments.
An Open Letter to Local Sports Reporters

An Open Letter to Local Sports Reporters

PittGirl has had enough of the criticism of fanatics and asks the media to stop labeling everyone.

The 412

Bryant McFadden Wants to Talk to You

Bryant McFadden Wants to Talk to You

The former Steelers cornerback joins the 120 Sports team to keep you up to speed on all things sporting.
Celebrate Our 'Up-and-Coming Nightlife City' Status With Pittsburgh Cocktail Week

Celebrate Our 'Up-and-Coming Nightlife City' Status With Pittsburgh Cocktail Week

Raise a glass to another 'Burgh superlative at these awesome cocktail parties.
Pittsburgh is One of the Most Cycling-Friendly U.S. Cities

Pittsburgh is One of the Most Cycling-Friendly U.S. Cities

Bicycling mag ranks the Steel City at No. 21 on its list of 50 metropolises.
Thrival Festival Rocked Bakery Square 2.0

Thrival Festival Rocked Bakery Square 2.0

Relive the two-day event that was part innovation and part musical brilliance.

Hot Reads

Made in Pittsburgh

Made in Pittsburgh

The city of steel always has been known for its industry – what we make. Today, that defining characteristic expands beyond manufacturing into every aspect of modern life: to technology, clothing, home goods and unique food and drink products as well.
Ed Piskor is Pittsburgh's Hip-Hop Historian

Ed Piskor is Pittsburgh's Hip-Hop Historian

While he can walk largely unrecognized in his hometown, comic-book artist Ed Piskor of Munhall continues to win critical acclaim and international fame with “Hip Hop Family Tree,” a series of graphic novels telling the story of hip-hop music.
Review: Sienna Mercato

Review: Sienna Mercato

Matthew Porco, one of our Chefs of the Year, designs the menus at Sienna Mercato's downtown establishments.
An Open Letter to Local Sports Reporters

An Open Letter to Local Sports Reporters

PittGirl has had enough of the criticism of fanatics and asks the media to stop labeling everyone.
Film Noir Fall Fashion

Film Noir Fall Fashion

Fall into autumn with a fashion landscape awash in black, white and nifty shades of gray.
8 Foodie Day Trips (and a Few Weekends, Too)

8 Foodie Day Trips (and a Few Weekends, Too)

Hoping to take a leaf-peeping road trip? Keep food at the top of your priority list and consult our lineup of eight destinations, most within 150 miles of the city.