A Guide to the Best Pittsburgh Restaurants


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Soft Shell Crab Banh Mi at Kaya

When it comes to Pittsburgh restaurants, we are fortunate to be home to some of the country’s best. From the local favorites, hole-in-the-wall international restaurants you can find it all here.

One of our quests on Discover the Burgh is to share these great restaurants and help you plan your next meal out. To help with that, this restaurant guide (linking to every single review published on this site) was born!

Please keep in mind that this list is continually updated as we visit more restaurants in the city.  If your favorite is not featured here it is because we have either not visited or have not published our review yet. If you would like to make a recommendation for us to try, please email jeremy@discovertheburgh.com.

A note about our rankings – Our reviews are lumped into five major categories including “the very best,” “great,” “pretty good,” “average,” and “least favorite.” We recommend using these distinctions as your overall guide. Restaurants are organized in descending order based on our preference, but keep in mind that the differences between one at the top and bottom in any given category are minimal.

The Top 10 Restaurants in Pittsburgh

The Best Pittsburgh Restaurants

The following is our current Top 10 Pittsburgh restaurants. The restaurants that earn this distinction are ones we are certain we can order anything on the menu and not be disappointed.

1. Kaya – Strip District – Caribbean fare with the best burger and sweet potato fries in the city of Pittsburgh.
2. La Tavola – Mount Washington – Italian/Sicilian restaurant with authentic recipes and amazing desserts.
3. Cure – Lawrenceville – Cured meats, inventive cuisine, and overall one incredible menu.
4. Gaucho Parrilla Argentina – Strip District – Argentinian meats done right in sandwich form (and on their own).
5. Smallman Galley – Strip District – A unique food hall featuring four chefs, each with their own incredible menus.
6. Umami – Lawrenceville – Japanese food you’ve likely never had before in an amazing bar setting.
7. Morcilla – Lawrenceville – Spanish tapas bar with gourmet pintxos and small plates.
8. Bar Marco – Strip District – Modern American, craft cocktails, but rather expensive.
9. Apteka – Bloomfield – Eastern European, vegan meals coupled with a wonderful bar.
10. tako – Downtown – Upscale Mexican with tequila, artisan tacos, and guacamole samplers.  An absolute must.

Great Meals in Pittsburgh

Great Pittsburgh Restaurants

If you want to be able to order anything from a menu and anticipate it being good, these restaurants should have it. If a restaurant achieves this rating then it is guaranteed that we will go back to try more at some point in the future.

These are also the first we pull out when asked “where to eat in [neighborhood]” without knowing anymore about what you’re looking for.

Pretty Good Meals in Pittsburgh

Good Restaurants in Pittsburgh

Restaurants that fall into this category are generally recommended if you are in the mood for a specific entree or cuisine style. They entire menu may not be astounding (although it certainly could be), they may not have the best service, or even be a place you dream of eating at more frequently, but it’ll be a good meal if you need to satisfy a more specific craving.

In many cases meals in this category can be just as good as the above “great” category, but come with a few more distinctions for what to look for. These are the ones we recommend when being asked for “where to eat [cuisine type] in [neighborhood]” in more detail than the previous category.

Average Meals in Pittsburgh

Although we’d call them average, odds are good if a restaurant’s offering fell into this range there were some good components and some bad. Most restaurants here we may not fully recommend from a personal standpoint, but there could be reasons we’d go back for a re-try (such as seeing a dish next to us that looked amazing, new menu items being added, etc).

The following restaurants are also places we could recommend to specific people if we knew they had different tastes than us. When reading our reviews, odds are good you will know if this is you and some of the following could be worth checking out.

Our Least Favorite Meals in Pittsburgh

When it comes to bad meals, a restaurant has to miss just about everything for it to be featured here. Generally speaking, the entrees we tried had little to no redeeming factors, and the meals of others next to us (when available) did not look that inspiring either to warrant a second try.

Restaurants That Are Now Closed

Not every restaurant can make it as a business in this great city.  Over time some of the restaurants we review may close down permanently.  Rather than deleting the review from our site, they will be moved here in case you are interested in what used to be!

Check back soon as we add Pittsburgh restaurant reviews every week as we eat our way around the city! 

Looking for more food options in the city? Be sure to check out our listing of the best Pittsburgh food trucks which features a collection of our favorite local trucks, carts, and street vendors!

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