Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hungry for Something Good, Pittsburgh? Where We're Eating in May

We're shaking it up at Milk Shake Factory, loving the large-format plates at a revived Morcilla and digging into some Indian cuisine at Spice Affair. Plus, we talk to Whitfield Executive Chef Bethany Zozula.




photo by erin kelly

 

Milk Shake Factory
The Edwards family has, since 1914, tickled Pittsburgh’s fancy for sweet treats. They operate Edward Marc Chocolatier and The Milk Shake Factory, which family member Dana Edwards founded at her mother’s Carson Street chocolate store as part of a college project in 2003. It took more than a decade for the family to open a second location, this time Downtown, in 2016. They’re ready to shake-up their conservative growth trend by adding 25 locations — the first is an outpost in East Libery— over the next three years, all with upgraded technology such as in-store preparation of soft ice cream. Tull Investment Group, run by CEO Alba Tull and film producer and Pittsburgh Steelers minority owner Thomas Tull, won’t simply supply capital — the milk for the milkshakes will come from Jersey cows at their Rivendale Farms in Washington County. 
themilkshakefactory.com
 


photo by laura petrilla

 

Morcilla
Morcilla, the lauded Spanish-inspired Lawrenceville restaurant from Justin Severino and Hilary Prescott Severino (Cure), reopened in April with a new menu and upgraded design following a three-month hiatus due to catastrophic flood damage.

Severino and chef de cuisine/partner Nate Hobart’s menu refresh features snacks, crudo and small and large plates, as well as Severino’s celebrated charcuterie. I’m particularly interested in the kitchen’s expanded large-format offerings. Lamb tagine, for example, is a soothing, warmly spiced dish of braised lamb shoulder, merguez sausage and roasted pears enhanced with golden raisin, labneh, pistachio and mint; satisfying saffron rice is served alongside the stew. Pair this with a few smaller plates such as indulgent-yet-unheavy artichoke confit and Idiazabl cheese gratin and escarole, cooked a la plancha and served with anchovy vinaigrette, smoked walnuts, espelette and manchego, and it’s a perfect group dinner.

The Severinos also smartly took advantage of the need to rebuild the dining area by adding layers of soundproofing to what once was one of Pittsburgh’s louder dining rooms. Now, with extra padding behind the ceiling slats, wood blocks atop the dining tables and cushions on the chairs, the space is both cozier and quieter than its pre-flood iteration. The team retained the majority of their staff throughout the closure, and front-of-house service remains crisp, hospitable and professional. 
Lawrenceville, 3519 Butler St.; 412/652-9924, morcillapgh.com
 


photo by erin kelly

 

Spice Affair
Chef Tamilselvan Thangadurai takes Indian cuisine in Pittsburgh to new heights with his expanded menu at Spice Affair in Aspinwall, where he’s worked as the restaurant’s head chef for the past year. Starters such as mirch pakora (hot banana peppers stuffed with spiced potatoes and herbs) whet the palate for main courses such as achari chicken, a southern Indian curry prepared with pickling spices. Vegetarians and vegans take note: Thangadurai’s menu is brimming with meatless options. ​
Aspinwall: 8 Brilliant Ave.; 412/847-7423, spiceaffairpgh.com


Bethany Zozula
Executive Chef | Whitfield

As executive chef of Whitfield and the rest of the culinary program at Ace Hotel in East Liberty, Bethany Zozula crafts outstanding daily menus. Two special series — the monthly(ish) Sharing Knives (a collaborative dinner series with Pittsburgh chefs) and the bi-weekly Jamison lamb menu — allow the chef extra creative freedom in planning what's for dinner.

Why continue Sharing Knives for a second season? 
There were some people I wanted to work with yet that I haven’t gotten to work with. And I figured I’d keep doing this until I ran out of friends. Plus, we weren’t sure how it was going to work when it started off, so I figured I could implement some new ideas and try again.

What prompted the western Pennsylvania Lamb Cook-Off and the weekly lamb dinners? 
Lamb is my favorite protein to work with. In my first jobs in Westmoreland County, Jamison was the only lamb source since they’re based there. When I moved to Pittsburgh I worked with Elysian Fields at Eleven, which is who a lot of chefs in Pittsburgh worked with. I was excited to get to work with the Jamisons again when I moved here. We had lamb neck on the menu, which was one of my favorite dishes to prepare, but it also is expensive. Well, instead of having it all the time, I decided to make it a special thing that we can do every two weeks using as many parts as we can. Usually, those menus will last for two or three days, but sometimes they sell out faster.

What ingredients are you looking forward to working with as we roll deeper into spring? 
At the moment, I'm thinking about artichokes because that's what I think in the spring — even though they’re not something that grows around here. I’m also thinking about asparagus and how I really hope it’s good this year, because last year was a terrible year for it. Mushrooms, foraged mushrooms. Spring is weird here, because although some things pop up early, it also can be such a short season as far as produce. It’s really June when things start to get rolling. That’s when I start to smell the wild roses and the honeysuckle.
 

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit Module Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Latest

Our 50 Years: Why I Hate Nostalgia

Enjoying memories is fun – but a far cry from pining for the past.

Perspectives: Finding Grace in #MomLife

A Pittsburgh television reporter learns to embrace the imperfection that comes with being a working mom.

The 400-Word Review: Pledge

IFC Midnight's collegiate terror tale is mostly for genre fans, but it lands a few decent punches.

Capel’s Basketball Resurrection Has the Zoo Rocking Again

Head coach Jeff Capel is restoring respectability and re-establishing the relationship between Pitt’s students and Pitt’s student athletes.

Why Did No One Tell Me Cirque du Soleil is Awesome

A skeptical novice takes in the troupe's "Corteo" production and is stunned at his own delight.

Three Rivers Champion: Julius Boatwright

Boatwright works to connect everyone who needs it with mental health support.

Turkey Devonshire: Reviving a Classic Pittsburgh Sandwich

The once-famous sandwich originated here but now is largely forgotten. We dive into its history and argue that it's time for a revival.

Navigating the Future of Public Transit in Pittsburgh

Six Pittsburghers share their struggles and hopes for the region’s public transit system.

Why Jamison Farm Is a “A Napa Valley for Sheep”

How a former coal miner and his wife use the resources atop rolling Westmoreland County hills to produce the best lamb in the United States.

Pittsburgh Restaurant Review: Fish nor Fowl

The sixth standalone concept from the Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group, is DeShantz’s most exciting restaurant yet.

Our 50 Years: When We Tried to Predict the Future

25 years ago, we predicted what the Pittsburgh of 2019 would look like. We were ... close?

Help Pay Tribute to a Pittsburgh Jazz Legend

Mary Lou Williams began as a teenage piano prodigy in the Hill District and made it to Carnegie Hall and beyond. This month, you can discover her musical legacy.

Their's was a Starry-Eyed Pittsburgh Romance

John Brashear dedicated his life to science — and his wife, Phoebe.

She Became Pittsburgh Radio Royalty by Making Music Matter

Rosemary Welsch, longtime DJ and senior producer at WQEP-FM, has shepherded the station from startup to institution.

He Tries to be a Blessing to Someone Every Day

Doug Williams helps men facing homelessness with hard work — and example.
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags


Our 50 Years: Why I Hate Nostalgia

Our 50 Years: Why I Hate Nostalgia

Enjoying memories is fun – but a far cry from pining for the past.

Comments

New Doc Unearths the Secrets of Moundsville

New Doc Unearths the Secrets of Moundsville

The West Virginia town's varied history and uncertain future are the subject of "Moundsville," which will be screened this week at the Carnegie Museum of Art.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Fresh Fest Beerfest Is Set to Return to Pittsburgh

Fresh Fest Beerfest Is Set to Return to Pittsburgh

The country's first black brewfest looks to double in size this year.

Comments

Pittsburgh Chef Moves: Csilla Thackray Headed to Legume Bistro

Pittsburgh Chef Moves: Csilla Thackray Headed to Legume Bistro

Thackray's departure from The Vandal will result in a new menu at that Lawrenceville restaurant.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Fitness: Five Great Trails to Run in the Fall in Pittsburgh

Fitness: Five Great Trails to Run in the Fall in Pittsburgh

Don’t resign yourself to the gym treadmills just yet – fall is one of the best times of the year to get outside and pound the pavement, surrounded by falling leaves and the possibility of grabbing a hot latte on the way home.

Comments

Love Sourdough? Find the Best There Is at These Five Bake Shops

Love Sourdough? Find the Best There Is at These Five Bake Shops

We dove into the local artisan bread scene to find the best places that bake naturally leavened bread in Pittsburgh.

Comments


Why Did No One Tell Me Cirque du Soleil is Awesome

Why Did No One Tell Me Cirque du Soleil is Awesome

A skeptical novice takes in the troupe's "Corteo" production and is stunned at his own delight.

Comments

My New Neighborhood Bar is The Birmingham Bridge Tavern

My New Neighborhood Bar is The Birmingham Bridge Tavern

After settling into a new neighborhood, PM nightlife editor Sean Collier sings the praises of his go-to corner bar.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Capel’s Basketball Resurrection Has the Zoo Rocking Again

Capel’s Basketball Resurrection Has the Zoo Rocking Again

Head coach Jeff Capel is restoring respectability and re-establishing the relationship between Pitt’s students and Pitt’s student athletes.

Comments

Steelers' Organization Shares Blame for Brown Debacle

Steelers' Organization Shares Blame for Brown Debacle

For years now, the Steelers have been working around Brown’s maladaptive tendencies from Monday through Saturday and throwing him the ball on Sunday and hoping for the best.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
The 400-Word Review: Pledge

The 400-Word Review: Pledge

IFC Midnight's collegiate terror tale is mostly for genre fans, but it lands a few decent punches.

Comments

The 400-Word Review: Glass

The 400-Word Review: Glass

M. Night Shyamalan's crossover film lands with a splat, as the filmmaker once again can't resist his worst impulses.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Pop Culture Touches Made These Weddings Extra Special

Pop Culture Touches Made These Weddings Extra Special

Whether you love all things Disney, “Game of Thrones” or “Star Wars,” there are lots of ways to add some personal — and fun — details into your wedding day.

Comments

It’s a Hockey Wedding in Pittsburgh

It’s a Hockey Wedding in Pittsburgh

This Pittsburgh couple was brought together by their love of hockey — and what better way to celebrate their New Year’s Eve wedding than with an outdoor game?

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Up for Auction: Luxury 200-Acre Ligonier Estate Owned by Former EDMC Exec

Up for Auction: Luxury 200-Acre Ligonier Estate Owned by Former EDMC Exec

Woodmere is one of four high-end properties owned by Robert Knutson scheduled to hit the auction block this week.

Comments

The Top Five HOME Stories of 2018

The Top Five HOME Stories of 2018

Take a look back at the biggest stories to come out of Pittsburgh’s home and design industry.

Comments