Pittsburgh's Bonna Terra: How Good?
I realize this restaurant is in Sharpsburg but how good is it? How would it compare if it were in Philly, D. C. or New York? Is it good for Pittsburgh or good by any standard? Can someone reply who has eaten their way through D. C. or New York? I'd be interested in what you would compare it to.
Just one persons opinion... it is good by Pittsburgh standards, not great by Pittsburgh standards. I always read and heard such great things but was let down on my first visit, and additional visits after that. Nothing bad about it, it is worth a visit if you are a foodie living in Pittsburgh, but I personally would not go out of my way for it. With all of the press and hype you would hope for something approaching Blue Hill in NY or Cashion's Eat Place in D.C., and sadly in my opinion it doesn't come even close. Once again this is just my opinion, I know there are a lot of fiercely loyal guests of Bonna Terra on this site.
It is good by Pittsburgh standards. I don't think it is fair to apply standards from New York, DC or anywhere else for that matter to restaurants in Pittsburgh. Blue Hill couldn't survive in PIttsburgh because there is not a critical mass of dinners who could afford/or appreciate it here. Not only that, PIttsburgh does not have purveyors of food that could provide a restaurant like that with the high quality food it needs. Nor is there a workforce of hungry, young chefs who are willing to work for shit wages in order to get experience. I can say this because I've cooked in Philly and in PIttsburgh. Chefs here in Pittsburgh who care about the quality of their food have a lot more obstacles to overcome.
I ate there one time and thought it was quite good by most standards. I lived in D.C., ate at many good restaurants there, and based on that one visit, would say it compares favorably with a place like Cashion's, which I thought was overrated anyway.
I have had better meals, but I definitely feel it is worth a visit. I would say the same about Legume, again, based solely on a single visit.
Personally, I have traveled extensively and I can say that Bonna Terra is a gem in the rough. Yes, it is in a somewhat run down part of Pittsburgh but I have dined there numerous times and have never been disappointed. Even comparing to other places I have been like Gary Danko's place in SF, etc. the food is very good. I would recommend it.