A report by Alexis Johnson for The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Pittsburgh has a national reputation for good eats and it was no surprise when it was named top American food city for 2019 by San Francisco-based restaurant and hospitality consulting firm af&co.
But a major part of the restaurant scene that may not always get recognition is the dozens of black-owned restaurants throughout the region — some of which have been staples in their communities for decades while others are emerging with new, modern and inventive themes.
The Post-Gazette has compiled a list of black-owned restaurants that offer soul food, barbecue, cultural cuisine, breakfast specials, traditional American meals, coffee, specialty teas, desserts and more. We hope to continue to add to this list as more black-owned food spots emerge, so please feel free to send any restaurants you feel we missed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’re looking for Coffee & Tea:
Arnold’s Tea – North Side
Owned by: Arnold’s Coffee & Tea is owned by Chef Claudy Pierre and Eminent Hospitality Solutions Co., a hospitality management and catering company. Arnold’s was passed on to Mr. Pierre from its original owner, Verna Arnold, in 2018. Chef Claudy’s mission is to provide a safe space for North Side community members while offering 12 coffees and lattes to choose from, along with 30 different teas.
Specializes in: Teas and coffee.
Menu: Sandwiches, wraps, soups, salads, desserts and more.
Hours: Monday-Friday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Everyday Cafe – Homewood
Owned by: Everyday Cafe is owned and operated by Bible Center Church. The cafe deemed itself Pittsburgh’s first completely cashless coffeehouse. The venue hosts meetings, workshops and networking events, and earnings are invested into Homewood-based organizations and causes. The multi-use space offers free Wi-Fi and a mix of seating and work tables.
Specializes in: Coffee.
Menu: Breakfast muffins, wraps, sandwiches, flatbreads, paninis, soups, salads, desserts, coffee, teas and more.
Hours: Monday-Friday: 7 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday: 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
Griff’s Grounds Coffé – Penn Hills
Owned by: Griffann Coleman-Brewer and her husband Keith have been in the coffee business for nearly five years. Griff’s Grounds Coffé’ encourages visitors to stay and enjoy the amenities instead of taking their coffee to go. The Penn Hills coffeehouse carries over 34 flavors of coffee, and each flavor is roasted into the coffee beans. Griff’s Grounds also partners with surrounding Penn Hills bakeries to provide a variety of sweets and desserts to the menu.
Specializes in: Coffee
Menu: Coffee, tea, and assorted sweets.
Hours: Monday-Friday; 8 a.m.-4 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
If you’re looking for Breakfast & Lunch:
Aunt Cheryl’s Cafe – Braddock
Owned by: Aunt Cheryl’s Cafe is owned by Cheryl Johnson, creator of Aunt Cheryl’s Catering. Ms. Johnson was in the catering and food business for over 20 years before opening the cafe in the heart of Braddock. Most known for serving “food from the heart,” Aunt Cheryl’s offers an all-day breakfast menu, Soul Food Fridays and an expansive lunch menu.
Specializes in: Home-style meals.
Menu: Chicken and waffles, all-day breakfast, sandwiches, salads, baked goods, fresh smoothies and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Cafe on the Corner – Marshall-Shadeland
Owned by: Cafe on the Corner was opened by Michael Blackwell and his wife, Lateresa, on the North Side in 2014. The building used to house Home Plate Bar before it was turned into The Cafe ‘n’ Creamery. Once that closed, the community continued to use the space for events and meetings before Mr. and Mrs. Blackwell decided to use the building to serve food once more. The Blackwells have also started a nonprofit organization called Kitchen of Grace that focuses on workforce development and training in the catering and restaurant industry.
Specializes in: Mini-kitchen homemade cuisine.
Menu: New Orleans gumbo, grilled turkey Reuben, paninis, wraps, soups, salads, desserts and more.
Hours: Monday-Friday: 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Saturday: 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Gabriella’s Gourmet On the Go – Southside Flats
Owned by: Gabriella’s Gourmet is owned by Pete Henderson. Mr. Henderson is known for his service at Famous Eddie’s and ownership of other bars and restaurants in the Hill District before taking over Gabriella’s on Carson Street in 2015. Gabriella’s offers an all-day breakfast and lunch menu.
Specializes in: Homestyle dining.
Menu: shrimp and grits, all-day breakfast and lunch, large fish sandwiches and more.
Hours: Monday-Friday: 3 a.m.-3 p.m.; Saturday: 7 a.m.-3 p.m.; Sunday: 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Grandma B’s – The Hill District
Owned by: Dorian Moorefield opened Grandma B’s in 2010 after closing his clothing store, Head to Toe, in Wilkinsburg when the economy crashed. Mr. Moorefield channeled his energy into the food business instead and started a breakfast and lunch storefront restaurant, naming it Grandma B’s after his grandmother, Eula Beatrice McCamery.
Specializes in: Breakfast and lunch.
Menu: Eggs, breakfast meats, hotcakes, french toast, burgers, salads, sandwiches and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Kevin’s Deli – Oakland
Owned by: Kevin McAllister has owned Kevin’s Deli, located in Webster Hall on the University of Pittsburgh’s campus, since 2004. Mr. McAllister calls his spot “the best kept secret in Oakland” and offers an extensive breakfast and lunch menu with daily specials.
Specializes in: American-style breakfast and lunch.
Menu: Breakfast sandwiches, omelets, wings, grilled cheese, hoagies, chicken club, salad, onion rings and more.
Hours: Monday-Thursday: 8 a.m.-6 p.m.; Friday 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Love Rocks Cafe – McKees Rocks
Owned by: Jackie Page-Heidelberg opened Love Rocks Cafe in March 2019 after years of working in the service industry. The cafe is inside the Sto-Rox Library at the Father Ryan Arts Center, where guests are offered daily specials that can be found on a wipe board, as well as a full menu.
Specializes in: Scratch-made breakfast and lunch items.
Menu: Breakfast platters, tacos, quesadillas, burgers, sandwiches, pork chops, salmon, jerk chicken, pasta and more.
Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
The Lunch Box – North Side
Owned by: Shirley and Edgar Jackson opened The Lunch Box inside the Allegheny General Hospital internal medicine facility in April 2019. Ms. Jackson said after years of working for Port Authority, the opportunity presented itself to open up a restaurant with her husband, who also owns Ambiance Hair & Nail Gallery on Federal Street. The Lunch Box offers a variety of grab-and-go breakfast and lunch items, and serves unique daily specials including vegetarian options.
Specializes in: Lunch specials.
Menu: Breakfast sandwiches, muffins, bagels, home-made salads, tuna macaroni, paninis, smoothies and more.
Hours: Monday-Thursday 7 a.m.-3:30 p.m.; Friday 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
Mon Valley Kitchen – West Mifflin
Owned by: Jasmine Sims opened Mon Valley Kitchen after cooking from home under the name 5th Ave Kitchen back in 2015. Ms. Sims eventually rented a space in McKeesport where she changed the restaurant’s name, and later found a permanent home in West Mifflin in 2019. Ms. Sims says her motivation for opening her restaurant was her son, Akil, who is her only child and “reason for everything.” Mon Valley Kitchen offers breakfast, daily specials, and oftentimes a late night dinner menu.
Specializes in: Breakfast and home-style lunch specials
Menu: Shrimp and grits, breakfast meals, tacos, burgers, fried fish, crab legs, lamb chops, salmon, wings and more.
Hours: Tuesday-Sunday; 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
If you’re looking for traditional American-style meals:
Back to the Foodture – Pitcairn
Owned by: Back to the Foodture was opened by Angel Randolph and Eddie Barnz in June 2019. The owners call the nostalgic-themed spot a “restaurant/museum” as they look to take visitors back in time with specials like the “Jaws” fish sandwich. The shop is decorated with memorabilia from the 1970s-90s and offers 30 different flavors of fries, 104 wing sauces and unusually made sandwiches.
Specializes in: Customized sandwiches.
Menu: Specialty burgers, wings, fries, hot dogs and more.
Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
C&D’s Kitchen – Hazelwood
Owned by: Longtime Hazelwood residents Cletus and Denise Helton opened C&D’s Kitchen in June 2019. The restaurant used to be a takeout kitchen and now houses seating for 30 guests. The family-run establishment offers a big breakfast menu as well as soul food and traditional American items for lunch and dinner.
Specializes in: Breakfast and homestyle cooking.
Menu: Pizza, hoagies, chicken, burgers, hot dogs, loaded fries, full breakfast and more.
Hours: 6 a.m.-6 p.m.
Chef’s Table – Ross
Owned by: Kevin Watson, an Erie native, opened Chef’s Kitchen at the top of 2020 after having served as executive chef at both Savoy and The Cafe at the Frick. Mr. Watson opened Chef’s Table, a BYOB restaurant, to focus on serving healthy meals. Chef’s Table also spearheaded the “Buy a Meal, Give a Meal” program, which aims to help to feed the hungry in the community.
Specializes in: All-natural healthy brunch and dinner options.
Menu: Breakfast items, edamame, vegetable wontons, cauliflower steak, salads, sandwiches, pizza and more.
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Friday- Saturday: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Crabs R Us – Wilkinsburg
Owned by: Crabs R Us is owned by Keith Bettis, who opened the restaurant in 2017 with 20 years of professional cooking experience. The restaurant offers an extensive menu with a variety of meat and seafood combos, and recently added breakfast items and an earlier opening time. Crabs R Us offers catering and often doubles as a space that hosts private events.
Specializes in: Seafood.
Menu: Shrimp, wings, cod, crab cakes, lobster, crab legs, salads, pastas, crab fries, desserts and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 8 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
Honey Bees – East Hills
Owned by: Honey Bees Restaurant, which sits in the East Hills Plaza, is owned by John Schofield and his family, who have been in the restaurant business for over 20 years. The family once owned a restaurant named TNT in Homewood in the late ’90s before changing the name to Honey Bees and relocating. Honey Bees serves an assortment of fried food takeout lunch and dinner items.
Specializes in: Chicken wings and hoagies.
Menu: Wings, hoagies, salads, french fries, burgers, fish, pork chops, linguine salad, cream chicken rice and more.
Hours: noon-8:30 p.m.
Lettuce Eat – Monroeville Mall
Owned by: Lettuce Eat is a fast-casual salad spot owned by Audryana Hatcher of Lettuce Eat LLC. Ms. Hatcher started the restaurant to feed a personal desire for quality vegetable and meat options. Lettuce Eat marked its grand opening in August 2016 in the Monroeville Mall and offers salads made fast and fresh.
Specializes in: Salads.
Menu: Salads, wraps, paninis, soups and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday noon-6 p.m.
If you’re looking for Soul Food:
Carmi Soul Food – South Side
Owned by: Carmi Soul Food restaurant was opened by Carlene and Michael King in 2011 after doing small catering gigs for their church, family and friends. What started out as The Catering Kings on Western Avenue, Carmi relocated to the South Side in 2018 and has been a leader in sit-down soul food restaurants in Pittsburgh.
Specializes in: Slow-cooked, home style soul food.
Menu: Smothered chicken, meatloaf, liver and onions, spare ribs, pork chops, fish, fried pickles and more.
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Cornbread – West Mifflin, Tarentum and Greensburg
Owned by: Adenah Bayoh and her business partner, Elzadie “Zadie” Smith, opened the first Cornbread in Maplewood, N.J., in 2017. Operating under five main standards — to love, give, serve, work and strive — Cornbread is an innovative soul food restaurant concept with a family-friendly dining experience. Cornbread has three locations in the region including Tarentum, Greensburg and inside Walmart in West Mifflin.
Specializes in: Cornbread and fast-casual soul food.
Menu: Turkey wings, whiting, catfish, ribs, chicken, oxtails, chicken and waffles, grits, mac n cheese, corn bread and more.
Hours: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
House of Soul Catering – Munhall
Owned by: Kay Stewart and her husband, Maurice, opened House of Soul Catering, LLC. in Munhall in 2017. After graduating from the University of Pittsburgh, Mrs. Stewart worked for the government for six years and also operated a variety of side businesses, from day cares to hair salons. But after following her love for cooking, Mrs. Stewart realized that food was her niche. House of Soul offers daily pork-free soul food specials and an all-day breakfast menu.
Specialiezes in: Chicken and fish.
Menu: Chicken, seafood boils, yams, greens, beef and turkey ribs, mac and cheese.
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday; 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday: 12 p.m.-6 p.m.
Ms. Jean’s Southern Cuisine – Wilkinsburg
Owned by: Jean Gould of Swissvale has been operating Ms. Jean’s Southern Cuisine for nearly 20 years after retiring from working with children and adults with disabilities. Ms. Gould moved her business into the Hosanna House community center around 2008 and has remained a staple for soul food in the Wilkinsburg community. Ms. Jean’s offers an all-you-can-eat buffet on Sundays, and often has gospel entertainment. Every year, Ms. Jean’s serves free Thanksgiving dinners for anyone to come enjoy a home-cooked meal.
Specializes in: Southern-style soul food.
Menu: Ribs, fried chicken, fish, pepper steak, meatloaf, spaghetti, stuffed chicken breast, wings, grilled steak and more.
Hours: Tuesday-Friday: noon-6 p.m.
Nana’s Place/Gibson’s Takeout – Bloomfield and Penn Hills
Owned by: Nana’s Place was opened in 2005 by the family of Wahneita “Nana” Gibson. The family runs two locations — one in Bloomfied, and one in Penn Hills, known as Gibson’s Takeout. They offer fast-casual soul food with rotating daily specials throughout the week.
Specializes in: Soul food dinners.
Menu: Smothered pork chops, ribs, tilapia, whiting, chicken wings, mac n cheese, yams, green beans, potato salad, desserts and more.
Hours: noon-7 p.m.
Q&M’s Fish, Chik & Ribs – Plum
Owned by: The late Quincy Banks co-founded Q&M Fish, Chik & Ribs with his partner Terri Michele, who now co-owns the restaurant with Mr. Banks’ daughter, Linda Banks-Willoughby. After operating in Penn Hills for about four years, the BYOB restaurant moved to Plum in 2015. Q&M’s focuses on Southern-style family recipes with menu items named after relatives.
Specializes in: Southern-style soul food.
Menu: Pulled pork, turkey legs, country sausage, gravy fries, wraps, ribs, pork chops, black-eyed peas, sweet potato casserole and more.
Hours: Wednesday-Friday: noon-7 p.m.; Saturday 1-7 p.m.
Quik-It Chicken – North Side
Owned by: Eugene Thomas opened Quik-It Chicken in its original location on Federal Street in 1986. About 10 years later, Mr. Thomas built the Quik-It facility on Pennsylvania Avenue, where his restaurant shares the space with a gas station. The Quik-It franchise continued to expand to as many as eight locations, but now solely operates on the North Side, where it is connected to a Valero gas station and convenience store. Mr. Thomas offers price matching on bulk chicken orders and claims to have the “best bird in the Burgh.”
Specializes in: Chicken and a variety of sides.
Menu: Chicken, ribs, fish, mac and cheese, red beans and rice, yams, baked beans, corn, collard greens, mashed potatoes, stuffing and more.
Hours: 10:30 a.m.-10 p.m.
Simmie’s Restaurant and Lounge – Homewood
Owned by: Gene Rouse and his wife, Valine, opened Simmie’s Restaurant and Lounge in the early 1990s. The Rouse progeny took over the business after Mr. Rouse died in 2001 and has since added a takeout operation called Simmie’s Bistro To Go, which offers a selection of soul food options as well as takeout beer.
Specializes in: Home-style family meals and dinners.
Menu: Ribs, turkey, fish, chicken wings, pork chops, jumbo shrimp, desserts, cabbage, greens, yams and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday noon-10 p.m.
Soul & Sea – Penn Hills and South Side
Owned by: Brittany and Jermaine Houser first opened Soul & Sea in Penn Hills in July 2017, but the building sustained a devastating fire just four months later. They were able to not only rebuild and reopen but also expand to a second location on the South Side. The restaurant offers a variety of takeout style barbecued surf ’n’ turf.
Specializes in: A combination of soul food and seafood.
Menu: Lobster tail, jumbo shrimp, crab legs, ribs, shrimp & grits, wings and more.
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday: noon-9 p.m.; open until 3 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays at South Side location.
Vickey’s Soul Grill Takeout & Catering – McKeesport
Owned by: Vickey Giddens, a Florida native who relocated to McKeesport opened, Vickey’s Soul Grill Takeout & Catering in 2019 alongside operations manager Michael Kennedy. The restaurant serves up family meals, dinners and desserts, and also offers vegetarian and vegan menu items. Ms. Giddens offers catering and does delivery through Uber Eats and Door Dash.
Specializes in: Southern soul food.
Menu: Fried chicken, ribs, oxtail, liver and onions, baked beans, black-eyed peas, peach cobbler, sweet potato pie and more.
Hours: Wednesday: 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Friday: noon-10 p.m.; Saturday: 1-10 p.m.
If you’re looking for BBQ:
The Dream BBQ – Homewood
Owned by: The Dream BBQ is owned by Dave Jenkins, who you’ll often find manning the grill himself. Mr. Jenkins has been in business nearly 15 years, often attracting customers with just the scent of wood smoke and grilled meats as they travel down Braddock Avenue. The Dream has a “taste before you buy” policy and will mix its original sauces to your liking.
Specializes in: Grilled BBQ and soul food side dishes.
Menu: rib racks, rib sandwiches, wings, baked beans, yams, mac and cheese, greens and more.
Hours: noon-9 p.m.
Naka Endzone BBQ – Crafton
Owned by: James and LaTonya Weaver started Naka Endzone BBQ as a mobile food cart that has since developed into a Crafton takeout storefront. Naka — which stands for Nothing Against Kan Achieve — offers barbecued dinners, soul food sides and assortment of desserts.
Specializes in: Ribs and barbecue.
Menu: Ribs, chicken wings, cabbage, chicken and rice, potato salad, yams, kernel corn, cakes, pies and more.
Hours: Wednesday-Sunday: 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
Ribs N Bread – Oakland
Owned by: Randy and Becky Thompson opened Ribs N Breadon Centre Avenue in Oakland in 2018. A veteran of local barbecue, Mr. Thompson had a shop in Homestead in the 1980s and was a longtime employee at nearby Chief’s in Oakland. He and his wife also used to own a full-service restaurant, Steel City Rib House, on South Highland Avenue. The Thompsons’ latest restaurant effort offers catering, delivers through UberEats, GrubHub, Postmates, and Door Dash, and has a menu that stays true to its name.
Specializes in: Grilled pork ribs.
Menu: Ribs, BBQ wings, chicken, smoked meatloaf sandwich, greens, corn bread, mac n cheese and more.
Hours: Wednesday-Friday: noon-10:30 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday: 10 a.m.-10:30 p.m.
Showcase BBQ – Homewood
Owned by: Showcase BBQ in Homewood is owned by Drew Allen, who originally started his career as a carpenter. In 2003, Mr. Allen moved on to the idea of becoming a DJ and opening a nightclub but had trouble getting a permit. Instead of ditching his entrepreneurial spirit, Mr. Allen honed in on his cooking skills and opened up a barbecue that offers catering and hosts private parties and sporting events. He’s even invented his own sauce that has become a staple in the Homewood community.
Specializes in: Northeastern style, backyard barbecue.
Menu: Ribs, chicken wings, burgers, mac n cheese, potato salad, greens, red beans and rice, yams, broccoli and cheese and more.
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday: 11:30 a.m.-8 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 11:30 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday: noon-7 p.m.
Z-Best Barbeque, Chicken & Ribs – Uptown
Owned by: Z-Best Barbeque is owned by Darwin Copeland, who acquired the restaurant from a previous owner. The Copeland family has been firing up the grill since 2009 and moved into the former home of Mr. Ribbs in Uptown in 2014. Longtime residents of the Hill District, the Copeland family uses Mr. Copeland’s mother’s and grandmother’s recipes to serve up smoked barbecue, while also offering catering and delivery.
Specilizes in: Fire-grilled barbecue.
Menu: Chicken, ribs, fish, sandwiches, baked beans, cabbage, sweet potatoes, potato salad, collard greens, cornbread and more.
Hours: 11:30 a.m.-8 p.m.
If you’re looking for Cultural Cuisine:
Casa Brasil – Highland Park
Owned by: Casa Brasil was founded in 2018 by head chef Keyla Cook and general manager Tim Guthrie. Ms. Cook worked as a private chef and caterer since 2015 before opening Casa Brasil, the first restaurant in Pittsburgh to serve Brazilian home-style cooking. The restaurant gives customers the option of dining in or takeout and also provides full-service catering.
Specializes in: Brazilian cuisine.
Menu: Chicken or vegetarian stroganoff, stews, chickpea salad, flan, churros, Yuca fries, vegan desserts, teas, mango juice and more.
Hours: Sunday: 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m.; Monday-Friday: 5:30-9 p.m.; Saturday: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Fireside Jamaican Restaurant – Wilkinsburg
Fireside Jamaican Restaurant offers eat-in or takeout Jamaican food with daily specials made to order.
Specialzies in: Traditional Jamaican dishes.
Menu: Brown stew chicken, jerk shrimp, fried plantains, oxtail stew, curried goat, cabbage, salad and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Island Spice Restaurant – Carnegie
Owned by: Denise Knight manages Island Spice Restaurant in Carnegie, which opened in 2019. The restaurant sits in a shopping plaza next to the Carnegie Aldi store and offers weekly specials on Caribbean cuisine. But Island Spice also has traditional items like burgers and tacos listed as appetizers and infuses them with jerk flavors.
Specializes in: Caribbean food.
Menu: Wings, salads, wraps, burgers, sandwiches, tacos, oxtail, jerk chicken, curried goat, stew beef, dumplings, fried breadfruit and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Leon’s Caribbean Restaurant – Allentown
Owned by: Leon Rose, a native of Montego Bay, Jamaica, opened Leon’s Caribbean Restaurant in 2015. Mr. Rose started cooking at an early age before taking his talents for flavor to culinary school. Leon’s is a smaller space with just a few tables but a large menu filled with original Caribbean specialties and quality Jamaican meals.
Specializes in: Caribbean food.
Menu: Jerk chicken, oxtail stew, curry fish, pepper steak, jerk lobster, salmon pasta rasta, plantains, fried dumplings and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
Musa Caribbean / Cajun Fare – Beechview
Owned by: Musa Caribbean is owned by Kenrick Cheong, a native of Galveston, who came here to attend the bygone Pennsylvania Culinary Institute. Mr. Cheong never left after meeting his wife, Amy, and starting a family. Musa was converted from an old neighborhood bar and features an outdoor deck for patrons to enjoy an alcoholic beverage. The menu of the Caribbean and Cajun fusion restaurant is inspired from West Indian lineage by way of eastern Texas.
Specializes in: Caribbean and Cajun food
Menu: Jerk pork nachos, plantain chips, choka, West Indies curry, creole bowls, shrimp, chicken, soup, salads and more.
Hours: Wednesday-Thursday: 4 p.m.-9 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Pauline’s Caribbean Soul Cuisine – North Side
Owned by: Pauline’s Caribbean Soul Cuisine is a family owned restaurant that opened in 2018 and serves Caribbean traditional cuisines with a twist. The owner also runs Pittsburgh Jerk Fess and Pittsburgh Seafood fess. Pauline’s offers made-to-order meals as well as seafood specialties and delivers through UberEats, Grub Hub and East 24.
Specializes in: Traditional and Caribbean infused cuisine.
Menu: Curry chicken, jerk chicken alfredo, coconut shrimp, banana fritters, Ackee N Saltfish, plantains, cabbage and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Royal Caribbean Takeout – Wilkinsburg
Owned by: Ben Crownie opened Royal Caribbean Takeout & Delivery in 2007 in East Liberty before relocating to Wilkinsburg. Mr. Crownie prides himself on consistency, quality and special ingredients that make his Caribbean food stand out. The restaurant offers a full menu with appetizers, platters, combos and entrees.
Specializes in: Caribbean takeout.
Menu: Crab cakes, jerk shrimp, fried plantain, jerk chicken, ox tails, beef ribs, king fish steak, sampler platters, desserts and more.
Hours: 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.
If you’re looking for Desserts:
Cakery Square – Waterfront
Owned by: Cakery Square is owned by former Pittsburgh Steeler Wes Lyons and Amber Greene. Mr. Lyons opened the bakery in 2017 with the hopes of creating jobs for students enrolled in his Pursuit Program that focuses on career preparation, leadership and life skills. While student workers get training opportunities, visitors can enjoy tasty treats or participate in dessert decorating parties and classes. Cakery Square is in the midst of relocating after partnering with Fudge Farm, but they are still taking orders and scheduling classes through email and offers its products through Fudge Farm’s storefront.
Specializes in: Baked goods.
Menu: Doughnuts, muffins, cupcakes, cookies, cakes, gelato, shakes, tea blends and more.
Hours: Sunday-Thursday: 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 9 a.m.-9 p.m.
CobblerWorld – Downtown and East Liberty
Owned by: Terina J. Hicks is the president and “Chief Baker Officer” of CobberWorld LLC. A layoff from full-time employment in 2014 pushed Ms. Hicks to start her own company, and she did just that with a smoothies business called Heaven’s Nectar while also selling homemade cobblers and cakes in local grocery stores. She later decided to focus her talents only on desserts and, more importantly, her fresh cobblers.
Specializes in: Cobblers and pies.
Menu: Cobblers, pies, cheesecakes, turnovers and more.
Hours: Downtown: Monday-Friday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; East Liberty: Tuesday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Dana’s Bakery – Homewood
Owned by: Joseph Simmons has been serving the Homewood community for nearly 40 years at Dana’s Bakery, named after one of his daughters. Mr. Simmons is a self-taught baker who specializes in range of food from doughnuts and cookies to wedding cakes and sweet potato pies. The URA recently approved Dana’s Bakery’s relocation into the James T. Givner Building on North Homewood Avenue.
Specializes in: Baked goods.
Menu: Doughnuts, pies, sheet cakes, cupcakes, dessert wraps and more.
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 6 a.m.-5 p.m.
Fudge Farm – South Side and The Waterfront
Owned by: Fudge Farm originally opened as GoodyHouse Chocolate Co. in Munhall in 2011 and was founded by Walt Rainey and his wife, Molly. What started as a strictly wholesale operation later grew into storefronts in the Waterfront and South Side. In June 2019, Mr. Rainey partnered with Cakery Square to open a joint venture in Bloomfield. Fudge Farm is a gourmet fudge, chocolate and ice cream shop that prides itself on the “Ultimate Milkshake Mania.” They offer free sampling for customers and also host decorating classes and parties.
Specializes in: Fudge and milkshakes.
Menu: Gourmet milkshakes, fudge, fruit bouquets, chocolate covered Oreos, pretzels and more.
Hours: South Side: 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Waterfront: Monday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
If you’re looking for a Bar or Lounge:
The Genuine Pub – Penn Hills
Owned by: Michelle Brevard has owned Genuine Pub since 2013. The venue operates mainly as a bar geared toward business professionals but also has a kitchen that offers daily food specials. The space has a pool table, a dance floor and a DJ on most nights. On Tuesday nights, the pub features a live band. Friday and Saturdays welcome mature crowds looking to eat, drink and enjoy hip-hop and old school R&B.
Specializes in: Bar & grill-style food.
Menu: Caribbean food, burgers, wings, salads, tacos, fries and more.
Hours: 4 p.m.-2 a.m
The Lounge on Verona – Verona
Owned by: Monica Jones opened The Lounge on Verona in 2014. The lounge has a full bar menu and daily drink specials. It offers space for special events and parties, where patrons can enjoy a live DJ, dance floor, karaoke nights, pool table and televisions. The lounge also caters toward the 30-and-up crowd after 9 p.m.
Specializes in: Fried bar-style foods.
Menu: Fish and chicken sandwiches, wings, salads and more.
Hours: 3 p.m.-2 a.m.
Savoy – Strip District
Owned by: Charles Sanders, a former running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers, opened Savoy Restaurant and lounge in 2011 with the help of Kevin Watson, who now owns Chef’s Table. Savoy looks to offer an upscale dining experience. The venue often hosts dinner parties and events and has an upstairs nightclub with a live DJ for late-night entertainment.
Specializes in: Upscale dining options.
Menu: Shrimp cocktail, fried zucchini, teriyaki salmon bites, meatloaf, pork chops, lamb chops, lobster tail, sea bass, rib-eye and more.
Hours: (Winter hours) Monday, Thursday: 5-10 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 5 p.m.-2 a.m.
Young Brothers Bar – Marshall-Shadeland
Owned by: Jamie Younger, a North Side native, opened Young Brothers Bar in 2006. The space doubles as a nightlife spot with BJ’s Event Center attached to the bar and kitchen area that serves traditional American food. Young Brother’s often hosts events to raise money for important causes.
Specializes in: American-style bar & grill food.
Menu: fish, chicken, burgers, salads and more.
Hours: Sunday-Wednesday: 1 p.m.-midnight; Thursday-Saturday: 2 a.m.-1 p.m.