Best Restaurants in Pittsburgh in 2019
(page 4 of 11)
It’s Best Because: It’s pure Pittsburgh magic.
Pittsburgh food lovers mourned in 2017 when Michele and Cindy Savoia announced they were shuttering their 17-year-old Dish Osteria & Bar. We rejoiced in April when what was a closing turned out to be an extended sabbatical. It’s as if the Savoias froze time; all the magic that made Dish one of Pittsburgh’s most beloved restaurants is still there, as are nearly the entire closing staff.
The stunning seafood dishes such as sardines alla griglia and cravable pasta plates such as rigatoni alla scamorza affumicata are as delectable as they ever were. Michele and his brother, Andrea, plus a dynamic front-of-house crew, provide a timeless sense of grace and hospitality. If Dish isn’t already your go-to feel-good destination, it quickly will become so.
Chef/Co-Owner Michele Savoia
SOUTH SIDE: 128 S. 17th St.
What we said when we learned of the reopening: Dish Osteria Will Reopen This Spring
It’s Best Because: It’s a family-friendly pizza joint with a lot of nice touches.
Pittsburgh went ga-ga when author/model Chrissy Teigen tweeted in February about how much she loved Driftwood Oven. It caused a bit of a frenzy (and some very long lines) for a few weeks, but it also clued people in to what a lot of us already knew: Neil Blazin and Justin Vetter’s brick-and-mortar version of their once-mobile pizzaria is outstanding.
Blazin, the baker, prepares stellar pizzas risen with a natural starter. His menu also includes farm-to-table salads and sourdough sandwiches such as mortadella with spicy pickled peppers. Vetter oversees an energetic, attentive and friendly front-of-house staff. We appreciate that Blazin and Vetter provide a fair wage for those workers, too. And here’s a nice bonus: Driftwood Oven is family-friendly.
Executive Chef/Co-Owner Neil Blazin
LAWRENCEVILLE: 3615 Butler St.
What we've said in the past: All Ashore! Driftwood Oven Lands A Permanent Home
ELEVEN CONTEMPORARY KITCHEN
It’s Best Because: It’s an anchor in Pittsburgh dining.
As the Strip District undergoes its most significant transformation in decades, Eleven Contemporary Kitchen provides a much-needed sense of upscale continuity. Eli Wahl helms the kitchen of the big Burrito Restaurant Group’s flagship restaurant, which since 2004 has elevated dining in Pittsburgh.
The dinner menu features dishes such as roasted carrots with parsnip purée, madeira-orange reduction, almond crunch and spicy greens as well as wild Alaskan halibut with pea puree, trumpet mushrooms, ramps and crispy spelt; seasonal tasting menus such as “Celebration of Spring” continue to wow, too. If you’re a Pittsburgher who hasn’t tried Eleven because you’re always visiting newer restaurants, I encourage a visit. If you’re a conventioneer or other traveler staying Downtown, it’s worth the short walk to dine at this always-excellent establishment.
Executive Chef Eli Wahl
STRIP DISTRICT: 1150 Smallman St.
What we've said in the past: Pittsburgh Chef of the Year: Bill Fuller