Hey Fellow Yinzer/Hounds
Are there any thoughts on a nice place for a date?
1. It doesn't have to be something "big" like one of those piles on MT. Washington, where the view is the thing.
2. It doesn't have to be "romantic" in the traditional sense, either.
3. Yeah, and price is sort of a factor. I've been hearing about Cafe Euro on Grant St., but I've also heard that it is on the pricey side for what you are getting.
I went to Priscilla Dining in Art on East Carson, and had a great time; has anyone been to the Harris Grille in Shadyside? What about the Lava Lounge on the Southside?
I don’t know what makes a place romantic, exactly. I would think of a small place that’s comfortable and not intimidating, with excellent food that is not the ordinary fare, with competent, pleasant service. I look for a place that strikes me as “civilized.” That sounds like LePommier (LeP) at 2104 Carson St. or Café Allegro, also on the So. Side or Café Sam on Baum Blvd.
Also filling the bill but with a more standard menu are Café Georgio on Donati Rd near So. Hills Village and Café Giovanni on Washington Rd in Mt Lebanon.
That’s five places with good eats and nobody balancing a beer bottle cap on his nose. Save that scene for later.
I ate at LeP just recently. They have a fixed price at $35 including soup, salad, main, and dessert. You would not get this in France for 28 euros, non.
add on - I may have mis-spoke about Cafe Giovanni. It may not be currently in operation. Well, places that I have described have a struggle while meat markets thrive.
I'd add one more that fits that excellent definition, and that's Soba, in Shadyside. Nice variety of interesting food, not too big, and the bar has some comfy places to sit.
Is Mallorca (on Carson St.) still nice? We haven't been there in years, but I remember they had a lovely outdoor seating area (which could be very romantic if the weather's good), excellent service, and the food was terrific, even if the portion sizes were obscenely huge.
Couple thoughts on this thread. Cafe Euro is not bad, however I think the majority of the appeal of that place is it prime location downtown (US Steel Building). I have eaten there and have had good meals. However, I think there are some other options for a romantic meal in Pittsburgh. I think Mallorca, as mentioned above, is a great place. Great atmosphere, tremendous service, and I was actually impressed with the prices too.
My two favorite "date-type" places have yet to be mentioned. Girasole in Shadyside on Copeland. Small restaurant in the basement of a building spilling over to the sidewalk. Great entrees. Can't site any specific entrees as they change the menu constantly. I do remember the veal being tremendous. Probably the best salad that is served with dinner that I have ever had (including every a la carte place I have ever eaten). Just a great place, and tremendous atmosphere.
For out of the ordinary romantic dinners, I would actually recommend Spice Island Tea House in Oakland. Thai food. Not much decoration, etc. but for some reason, I think this place excels due to "hole-in-the-wall" appeal. Most people would not even know it was a restaurant passing by, and once inside, its very plain, but with candles, BYOB option (caution - they did just increase the corking fee, but worth it if you bring a good bottle), and unbeatable entrees, I would recommend giving Spice Island a shot.
I haven't been to Mallorca in a few years, but I remember really liking it.
Spice Island is a GREAT place, and ice cream from Dave and Andy's up the street is a great way to end the meal.
I have not been to Soba and Girasole, but I'll have to check them out!
I agree with the post above, Girasole is one of my favorite date spots. Though it can get rather noisy inside, if it is a nice evening you can sit on their patio.
Lava Lounge is NOT a place to go to eat. It is a decent place to get a drink - funky decor and if you happen to go when Fankie Capri is there as a DJ it can be fun (most people wear big animal heads while they are dancing) Hard to describe..
For romantic I would add the river room in the Grand Concourse. The lighting is usually pretty dim, you can see the city lit up across the river as well as the lit bridges (different from the traditional Mt. Washington views). I always love spice Islands. Another option if you are interested in outdoor dining is Andora on Mt. Nebo road, they have a great outdoor dining area with a fountain, if you are a meat eater I hear thier steaks are terrific. Lots of seafood choices as well.
Here is a review of Andora - it is old but still holds true. If you like spice the scallops on habenero risotto is excellent - not too spicy but a decent after burn.
Romantic... try Il Pizzaiola in Mt. Lebanon, BUT go to the courtyard in back - right out of Verona - or the Wine Room, the front isn't very romantic... too many families usually).
Davios in Beechview
Eleven on Smallman
But, I'll suggest something out of the ordinary that worked wonders when I first met my wife - The Century Inn at Scenery Hill about an hour south of downtown. Call the chef (724.945.6600), and ask him to make a special dinner for two. Then reserve the suite in their B&B across the street. It was a great evening.