Pittsburgh Restaurant Week offers new venues, no-reservation options

·3 min read

Aug. 5—Pittsburgh Restaurant Week has something for every diner, says its director Brian McCollum.

For those interested in trying a new eatery, there are a number of first-time participants for the event starting Monday.

For indecisive diners, the website offers a Restaurant Roulette wheel that will pick a spot at random.

For last-minute planners, many eateries do not require reservations.

For those who don't think one week is enough to take advantage of the meal deals, many restaurants are extending their offers for a second week.

Official dates for summer restaurant week are Monday through Aug. 14. Many of the deals will continue through Aug. 21, as indicated on the website by an orange "Two Weeks" icon next to the restaurant name.

It's all about giving people more options and greater flexibility, McCollum said.

"Typically we focus on making reservations and planning ahead, which we definitely encourage people to do, but there are some places that don't take reservations and specifically will cater to walk-ins," he said. "If you're looking for somewhere to go and you didn't plan ahead, you can look at the list of walk-in places and say, 'Let's go there.'

"You don't have to pick a specific time, you can just show up."

The maximum price for the featured menu is $40.22 for a meal with two to four courses. All participants offer dinner, and some also include a lunch option.

Summer restaurant week typically features lighter fare than the winter event, McCollum said. Many venues also focus on locally grown produce and other locally sourced products.

The menus include everything from budget-friendly burgers and sandwiches to upscale steaks and seafood.

First-time participants

Among restaurant week first-timers is Piada Italian Street Food, a Columbus, Ohio-based chain with 45 locations in seven states. Piada has five new Pittsburgh-area locations — East Liberty, North Hills, Oakland, Robinson and South Hills.

All five are offering a build-your-own entrée lunch or dinner option for two, priced at $20.22. Each diner selects a pasta or salad and adds protein, toppings, dressing and a fountain drink. The meal is topped off with a bag of crispy cannoli chips tossed in powdered sugar and served with chocolate chip cannoli cream.

"Piada does give Pittsburghers something new — a fast-casual approach to Italian food with fresh ingredients," said Caity Bergman, community marketing coordinator for Piada. "Piada was created with the belief that you don't have to sacrifice quality and flavor for speed and value.

"We opened our first Piada restaurant in 2010 with a mission to create fresh, modern Italian food focused on the preparation of high-quality ingredients and attention to simplistic cooking," she said. "Today's consumers are looking for healthier, better-quality food with convenient, fast delivery to accommodate their hectic lifestyles."

Among other first-time participants are Sullivan's Steakhouse in Downtown Pittsburgh, Tupelo Honey in Station Square and Getaway Bar & Grill in Brookline.

Texas de Brazil in Station Square, serving meats grilled in the Portuguese churrasco style, is returning for the first time since the pandemic shutdown, McCollum said.

McCollum advises interested diners to keep checking the restaurant week website at pittsburghrestaurantweek.com, as venues and menus continue to be added.

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley by email at smcmarlin@triblive.com or via Twitter .