St. Clair Social Review – A Neighborhood Bar in East Liberty

When it comes to bars in East Liberty, finding an approachable, low-key spot can be somewhat tricky. This trendy neighborhood has a lot of bars with unique themes and higher-end offerings, but when you want something a bit more straightforward, that may be a bit harder to come by.

Enter St. Clair Social- the kind of bar that East Liberty truly needs.

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ShadoBeni Review – Vegan Trinidadian Fare in the North Side

Whenever we think about restaurants we wish Pittsburgh had more of, our thoughts often go to international food in styles that are horribly underrepresented. Trinidadian food is one such country. Vegan food is one such style.

Enter ShadoBeni- a vegan Trinidadian restaurant that has now found its permanent home in the North Side in the Mexican War Streets.

Throw in the fact that this one is delicious, cheap, and rather approachable (for both takeout and limited dine-in seating), and, well, you can see why this one checks the boxes for us!

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Everest Kitchen Review – Nepali Momos and More

One of our favorite travel memories was hiking to Everest Base Camp in Nepal. Along the way, we were able to sample many rather delicious Nepali dishes to help keep us going on the brutal hike.

So when we found out that Pittsburgh has a Nepali community in the South Hills with several restaurants and stores, we had to go get our fix of the momos and other staples we enjoyed in our travels.

At the aptly named Everest Kitchen in Brentwood, we found all of these plus a modest offering of Bhutanese dishes as well. But for our first visit, we had to try out the Nepali side of the menu!

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Alta Via Pizzeria Review – Monster Pizzas Come to Bakery Square

If you were wondering when Big Burrito would open another restaurant in Pittsburgh, the answer is spring 2022. A few years after they opened the popular (and quite delicious) Alta Via in Fox Chapel, the restaurant group expanded with a pizza shop, aptly named Alta Via Pizzeria, in Bakery Square.

While this one leans in heavily on their pizza menu, the appetizers and supporting dishes are very much reminiscent of the namesake Italian joint nearby.

We were fortunate enough to be invited to a soft open as guests of Alta Via Pizzeria, and share a bit more about what the meal was like in this review!

Note: Part of our meal was provided complimentary as part of the opening but we purchased additional food on our own. As always, all opinions are our own.

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Tocayo Review – A Wonderful Taco Spread in Shadyside

When I first walked into Tocayo, it felt familiar- almost like I had been there before. This, in a way, makes a bit of sense as it is the second restaurant from the owners of Totopo in Mt Lebanon. So when I made that connection (a fact that I, honestly, completely overlooked until after visiting), things started to make more sense.

Tocayo feels like a worthy successor to the Mt Lebanon staple, and if you have ever enjoyed a meal there you would do well to run, not walk, to this one as the same great qualities and flavors can be found here!

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Viva Los Tacos Review – Themed Tacos and Margaritas in Oakland

Many Pittsburgher's were devastated when The Original Hot Dog Shop (also known as The O) closed in Pittsburgh's Oakland neighborhood in early 2020. While many hoped someone would come along and purchase the restaurant to bring it back to life, sadly it was not in the cards.

Instead, the prime restaurant space was renovated, thoroughly cleaned, and opened up as a taco restaurant with a loaded bar with a name and style straight out of Las Vegas- Viva Los Tacos. 

Naturally, I had to visit this one shortly after it opened to see what it was like.

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La Tavola Review – Authentic Italian on Mount Washington

Tucked away off of Grandview Avenue on Mount Washington is an unassuming Sicilian restaurant we have been visiting for years- La Tavola.

This restaurant is not a high-end, modern dining experience by any stretch, but simply offers a robust menu of classics, served in monster portions, in a friendly and welcoming ambiance.

Throw on a pizza shop tucked away with a side entrance, one of the best corkage fee policies in the city (just $5 per 750ml bottle as they don't sell alcohol- so BYOW), and hearty food that makes you feel like it came from your Italian grandparents, and you can see why return again and again.

As it had been a while since our first review, we thought this one was due for an update and we revisited with friends (plus several bottles of wine) in early 2022.

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Margaux Review – A Cafe, Restaurant, and Bar in East Liberty

East Liberty's recent growth always has made us wonder what will open in the neighborhood next. One thing East Liberty felt like it was lacking was a large, approachable coffee shop where you could both hang out for hours to work or stop by for a quick drink in a unique ambiance.

When Margaux opened, we knew it would be just that- this spacious cafe, bar, and restaurant space satisfies the need for a space to hang out as much as it is to drink and dine.

While we will need several visits to truly work our way through the menu here, on the first visit we visited for a light brunch and coffee.

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