The Colombian Spot Review – Go for the Arepas

Published by Angie. Last Updated on November 30, 2021.

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The Colombian Spot is a casual restaurant in the South Side and Oakland with a menu full of authentic Colombian dishes like arepas, empanadas, ropa vieja, tostones, and bandeja paisa.

There aren't too many places in Pittsburgh where you can find Colombian food, which is why we're super happy that The Colombian Spot exists and is delicious to boot.

The Colombian Spot Offers a Filling Meal

Tostones and Sirope at The Colombian Spot

We recently visited for lunch, which is a perfect time of day to enjoy arepas- basically little cakes or patties made from maize flour. Arepas can be eaten plain but are much more exciting when stuffed with fillings and eaten as quasi sandwiches.

Ropa Viejo with Sweet Plantains

At The Colombian Spot, there are a dozen or so different arepa filling options ranging from chorizo to shredded beef to pork belly. Vegetarian arepa options exist on the menu, too – one of our favorite combinations is cheese and sweet plantains.

During our most recent visit we tried the ropa vieja arepa which was stuffed with shredded beef in a tomato sauce, sweet plantains, and cheese. Our second choice was the arepa pabellon, stuffed with shredded beef, black beans, cheese, and sweet plantains.

The beef in our arepas was juicy and tender, and we loved the sweetness of the plantains to counterbalance the savory meat. And, most importantly, the arepas were delicious. Sometimes arepas can be dried out and a little bland, but not here – they were perfectly moist and full of flavor.

Arepa Pabellon

The arepas come with one side; we chose sweet plantains for one and soup for another. The soup of the day was ajiaco, a traditional chicken soup with potatoes and corn that helped us beat the chill on a cold winter day.

We also loved the tostones which we ordered as an appetizer. These were starchy green plantains, smashed and fried until super crispy and served with hogao, a tomato and onion sauce.

The Colombian Spot is BYOB but they also have a handful of non-alcoholic Colombian drinks to try. We tried the sirope, a mixture of panela (a raw cane sugar), lime juice, and cinnamon, which was definitely sweet but balanced by the tart lime.

Other drinks include fruit juices like blackberry, passion fruit, lulo, mango, and guava mixed with either water or milk for more of a smoothie like consistency. I tried the lulo which was slightly citrusy, not too sweet, and refreshing.

We absolutely love The Colombian Spot and wish we had more places like it in Pittsburgh. Whether you've tried Colombian food before or not, you're sure to find some delectable noshes here.

The Colombian Spot is located at 2019 E Carson Street in South Side and has a second location at 3533 Forbes Avenue in Oakland. We visited the South Side location for this review.

Looking for more authentic international spots in the area? Check out Golden Pig (Korean), Kavsar (Uzbeki), or Teppanyaki Kyoto (Japanese)!

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