In Pittsburgh, food is more than basic sustenance. Here, eating is as varied as the people who built the city. There’s a natural blend of wealthy and working class, American and immigrants. Like any other city, we have our share of chain restaurants, but Pittsburgh dining includes some unique gems that more than satisfy even the most sophisticated palates.
Uniquely Pittsburgh Restaurants
Some of the most popular eateries are those that reflect our past with a sense of pride.
- Primanti Brothers started serving their sandwiches topped with fries and coleslaw in the 1930s to truckers who had to get back on the road quickly and eat with one hand. The shop now has 15 locations in and around Pittsburgh, including the original Strip District shop.
- Pamela’s Diner is a Pittsburgh staple whose famous crepe-style pancakes are a favorite of President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama.
- Oakland’s Original Hot Dog Shop may not be the kind of place to take your parents, but the hot dogs and enormous french fry portions have been local favorites since 1960.
- Square Café is a small East End restaurant featuring seasonal local products and one of the best weekend brunches in town.
- Wholey’s is a a fish market that opened in 1912 featuring one of the best fish sandwiches in town.
- Peace, Love, and Little Donuts is a kitschy doughnut shop tucked away in the Strip District, with smaller locations scattered around the city, including in Oakland - within walking distance to Carnegie Mellon.
Generations of immigrants flocked to Pittsburgh and created a mosaic of culture and cuisine. Today, the city has a bounty of ethnic restaurants that showcase its diversity.
End a long day on a special note with an evening at one of Pittsburgh’s finer restaurants.
- Nine on Nine in the Cultural Disctrict features an intimate setting and a mix of regionally inspired American and French dishes.
- Capital Grille downtown boasts an impressive menu of dry-aged steaks and fresh seafood.
- Isabela on Grandview offers diners a delicious menu, impeccable service, and a breathtaking panoramic view of Pittsburgh's skyline from atop Mt. Washington.
- Savoy serves up locally sourced seafood and Southern-style comfort dishes in a lounge atmosphere from in the heart of the Strip District.
- Legume in North Oakland features a revolving menu crafted from local sources through direct relationships with growers.
- Soba is a pan-Asian lounge with small plates meant for sharing nestled among the chic businesses on Ellsworth Avenue in Shadyside.
- Spoon, in the newly revamped area of East Liberty, espouses a farm to table philosophy with a creative American menu.
- Salt of the Earth, located in Garfield, boasts an open kitchen serving seasonal dishes crafted from local sources at communal tables.
Pittsburgh dining guides
No matter your tastes, Pittsburgh has options for everyone.