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Jan 5, 2008 07:19 PM

Spitfire Grill in Greensburg

We in Westmoreland County have always suffered from a dearth of solid, non-boring restaurants. Seriously - we live in Ligonier, and there isn't much of culinary note out in these parts. Until now! Tonight, we discovered the Spitfire Grill in Greensburg, and we're awfully pleased.

Located on Broad Street in south Greensburg, Spitfire is in a low-slung brick building. It looks inviting from the outside, the interior is simple with nice lighting and a pleasantly clean feel. I didn't study the wine list but it looked of good range, and there were at least 5 each of red and white wines by the glass. I tried a Viognier and a dryish Riesling – both were pleasant. Dean had a Brooklyn Brown Ale (on tap).

We tried tonight's sushi roll special – spicy crab, pineapple, and avocado roll. It was not terribly spicy and the pineapple was a tad overwhelmed by the avocado, but it was fresh and tasty and handsomely presented with pickled ginger and a veritable planet-sized ball of wasabi. They presented it with chopsticks and the usual little dish for soy sauce – nice touch for a non-sushi restaurant.

Next, we dug into the pear and roasted beet carpaccio salad. Cute presentation – dressed arugula leaves were hidden in a little dome of beet slices. It was pleasant (if a little innocuous), with no element a standout. The nuts (hazelnuts, I think) added a nice crunch.

We tried the crabcakes, which were made with little binder and had nice flavor. They were served on a bed of julienned vegetables (zucchini, carrots, maybe green pepper) that was well-seasoned and buttery. The remoulade sauce was tasty, but the original portion on the plate was a little skimpy. We had to ask for additional sauce so we had enough to dab on each bite of the crabcake.

We finished up with decaf coffee, a Sandemans tawny port and the dutch apple fritters. Thick slices of apple dipped in a beignet-type batter and fried, then served with ice cream and a butter rum sauce, the fritters were quite good. My only complaint is that the apple slices were too thick to soften enough during their frying, so the texture was very firm and required quite a bit of wrangling with the spoon to cut them. I'll bet a short roast of the apples before making the fritters would enhance both flavor and texture. Coffee was smooth and very good (they serve La Prima Espresso coffees).

Service is friendly, efficient and not overbearing. It has some bumps – we had to ask for forks at one point, as they'd been taken away and not replaced – but the general staff attentiveness made this a minor inconvenience.

Friendly, low-key atmosphere and some of the best-executed dishes in these parts make the Spitfire Grill a winner for us. We're going to head there for the next Steelers game to sit at the long bar and enjoy the drink and $5 white pizza specials. And there is a great looking patio on one side (so this is truly a place for all seasons).


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  1. Thanks, we live in Rostraver and are in the same boat as you. Looks like we're a little under 30 min. away, might have to give it a try some time.

    Another place I was recently introduced to is Rivertown Pourhouse on Rt. 30 in N. Huntington. Great beer selection and definitely above average bar food, we especially like the pizza though it's not worth making a special trip just for the pizza unless you want some good beer too.

    You probably already know about Vincents Pizza Park on Rt. 30 too but if not it's right next to the Eat n Park which is near Kohl's on Rt. 30. Excellent Pizza, worth making a special trip for.

    We just moved up here after living in Pittsburgh my entire life and there isn't much up here that's more than just average.

    14 Replies
    1. re: Rick

      There isn't a Kohl's nor an Eat n Park anywhere near Vincent's Pizza.

      1. re: grapevine

        Sorry, you're mistaken.

        Vincents Pizza Park
        8871 Route 30. N. Huntingdon, PA 15642

        Eat N park
        8891 Route 30, N. Huntingdon, PA 15642.

        Also close by is the McDonald's on Rt. 30 that has the BigMac Museum, Target is directly behind Vincents.

        1. re: Rick

          I see, I was thinking of the original Vincent's Pizza at 998 Ardmore Blvd, also Route 30 in Forest Hills.

          1. re: grapevine


            I've read online that the one at 8871 Rt. 30 is the original? I'm not from this area originally so I don't know.

            1. re: Rick

              It is indeed the original. Personally, I am not fond of the pizza there but it has it's devoted followers.

      2. re: Rick

        All is not lost, though. Aren't you just a quick run to the Back Porch in Speers?

        1. re: yayadave

          We just bought the Enjoy book and I earmarked a bunch of resataurants in there within 30-40 minutes and that was one of them. I take it the Back Porch is worth going to?

            1. re: yayadave

              Just looked up it up and we're 9 miles/15 minutes from Back Porch. It'd be really nice to have a good regular restaurant/bar to visit a few times a month.

              1. re: Rick

                It's the real deal. A true colonial setting, fine service and wonderful food for not an outrageous amount of money. We had a wonderful traditional Thanksgiving meal there in '06.

                I can't figure out how they keep that place open at that location at that quality level.

                1. re: yayadave

                  Thanks for the reminder about The Back Porch. Can you still sit on the back patio in summer?

                2. re: Rick

                  Was there with my then fiancee (now wife) about 10 yrs ago, before moving here. I was still in NYC/Boston food mode and found the food pleasant enough, but the reason to go there was that it was consistently named one of the more "romantic" restuarants in the area and it did fit that bill. So not sure if that's your idea a "regular" type of place ;-)

                  1. re: Panini Guy

                    We haven't gone yet but no, romantic isn't our regular type of place! We hear the owners of the Back Porch also owns Speers Street Grill which is right next to the Back Door. Hopefully that place is good too.

                    We also went to a little Italian restaurant right next to Perry Auto Auction on Rt. 51. The food was actually pretty good and I was happy to have found another good place close by.

        2. Thanks,

          live in Pittburgh but last trip to Red Star not as good as it could be..


          1 Reply
          1. re: don515

            That's frustrating to hear Don. We went there about 2 years ago when we lived in Pgh. and we enjoyed it. We're making plans to go there soon with friends, I'll try to report back with my experience.