Pittsburgh food in August 2020: What’s opening and what’s closing

Things are far from “normal” in the local dining industry right now.

But we’re going to keep bringing you our monthly food and drink updates because there’s a lot changing. These days, that sadly means a lot of bar and restaurant closures. We’ve got nearly a dozen closures to share (they’re all the way at the bottom), along with some openings and so much good food and drink on the horizon.

In case you missed last month’s edition, catch up here. And in case we missed something, let us know so we can add it.


🥗 At Cafe Liminal, it’s all about locally grown, organic, and artisan-made foods with the motto “food is medicine.” Find salads, sandwiches, and more in the former Colony Cafe space on the border of Downtown and the Strip.

🆕 A South Side spot for eight years, Tootie’s Famous Italian Beef has moved to Market Square. The roast beef sandwich (made with chopped, marinated beef and topped with giardiniera and provolone) is the star of the menu, Good Food Pittsburgh reports.

🍤 2 Sisters 2 Sons is now serving up Caribbean cuisine in Sharpsburg — think jerk chicken, seafood fritters, and fried plantain.

🌮 New in Bloomfield: El Sabor is serving up Mexican cuisine with a variety of Latin food from South America. The menu includes tacos, fajitas, margaritas, beers, and much more.

🍱  Chiang Mai Noodle is now open on Craig Street in Oakland, replacing Pad Thai Noodle, PennsylvAsia reports.

🌭 Pappy’s Hot Dog Cart is now slinging hot dogs around town, often in the Strip District. Look for the red and yellow umbrella.

See you soon

☕️ Local coffeehouse Adda is opening a third location, this time in Garfield. It’ll include a showroom to feature local crafters.

🍺  Trace Brewing is coming to Bloomfield behind Liberty Beer with an outdoor beer garden, a coolship brewing system for wild ales, and a coffee bar. It’s expected to open in September, Very Local Pittsburgh reports.

🍳 Acclaimed chef Jamilka Borges will open Wild Child in Etna this summer for breakfast and lunch, Pittsburgh Magazine reports.

🍷 A giant Strip District building is transforming into 1700 Penn, a spot for local brews from Helltown Brewery and local booze from Pennsylvania Libations Wine Shop.

🍺 Heidelberg’s Insurrection AleWorks is making progress on a Strip District taproom.

🌮 Gordo’s Tacos & Tequila, a “new double-decker restaurant,” is coming to Mount Washington this summer.

🍻  Two Frays Brewery in Garfield is expected to open sometime in 2020.

➡️ Smallman Galley is moving to Bakery Square.

☕️ Redhawk Coffee is expanding to Sharpsburg with an espresso bar and a coffee roaster, per Very Local Pittsburgh.

🔥 The long-awaited Fig & Ash, a “farm-to-flame restaurant,” is headed to Deutschtown and getting very close to opening.

🥙 Beloved food truck Pita My Shawarma is opening a brick-and-mortar in Lawrenceville, and the patio is open already.

🍰 Prohibition Pastries is planning a new cafe in East Liberty with alcohol-infused pastries, cupcakes, cakes, sweet pies, and savory pies, Good Food Pittsburgh reports.

🍲 At long last, Pusadee’s Garden in Lawrenceville is coming back.

🍚 Oishii Donburi is coming soon to Lawrenceville from the owners of Oakland’s Oishii Bento, PennsylvAsia reports.

🍕 Big Burrito is bringing a yet-to-be-named restaurant to Lawrenceville with a focus on pizza, veggie-forward dishes, and burgers, Pittsburgh Magazine reports. Look for it this fall.

🥖 Rolling Pepperoni is opening a storefront in Lawrenceville run by Who’s Nexter Katt Schuler.

🍗 Coop De Ville, another concept from restaurateur Richard DeShantz, is coming to the Strip District with a fast-casual menu focusing on chicken, plus duck pin bowling, classic arcade games, pinball machines, pool tables, bocce, and ping pong.

🍏 Arsenal Cider House is turning an old Dormont bank into a new location with plans to open this fall, NEXTpittsburgh reports.

🧀 Tom & Chee, of “Shark Tank” fame, will open Downtown this fall. They’ll be serving melts, soups, and “grilled chee donuts,” per WTAE.

🍕 Caliente Pizza & Draft House is opening a new shop in Green Tree, its first location in the western ‘burbs, according to Patch.

🍔 Arlington Beverage Club, a new concept from well-known chef Kevin Sousa, is coming to an old social club in Allentown called St. George Lyceum, the Pittsburgh Current details.

🍺 Hitchhiker Brewing will take over a tiny storefront Downtown to serve beer — and coffee, per the Post-Gazette.

🍗 Beloved chicken-and-waffles purveyor The Coop is opening a brick-and-mortar location in the North Side, Good Food Pittsburgh writes. The food truck will remain in business, too.

🏛 Two new concepts are coming to the Pitt Building Downtown, the Post-Gazette reports. One is a sandwich shop. The other is a supper club called Saint Johannes.

🐟 Work on Wild Ninja Asian Grill is underway in Oakland, replacing Uncle Sam’s Gourmet Subs, PennsylvAsia reports.

🍺 The Woods House, a Scottish pub, is slated for one of Pittsburgh’s oldest houses.

Long-term openings on our radar

🐉 The subject of years of anticipation, restaurateurs Richard DeShantz and Tolga Sevdik are expected to open Gi-Jin. When? Well, the opening date has been pushed back for more than a year, sooooo who knows ‾\_(ツ)_/‾.

🍵 Tupelo Honey Teas in Millvale acquired the building next door and will renovate and expand over the next several years.

🎳 Shorty’s Pins x Pints, a new entertainment concept with duckpin bowling, bocce, pinball, cornhole, and giant beer pong, plus street food, is coming to the North Shore, per the Post-Gazette.

🚀 Grist House Craft Brewery is turning a Collier Township Cold War-era Nike Missile Command Center into another outpost for the popular brewery. But a lot of work is ahead, so be patient. An opening date is expected a year or two from now.

🎮 Look for a location of the Punch Bowl Social chain with food and drinks, plus ping pong, darts, bowling, classic video games, and karaoke in the Lower Hill sometime this year, NEXTpittsburgh shares.

🥗 Famed chef Justin Severino is planning a casual California-inspired cafe near North Park, the Trib writes.

🍻  Platform Beer Co., the Cleveland-based brewery, plans to open a brewery and tasting room in Garfield, the Post-Gazette writes.

🍗 The Eagle, a casual fried chicken restaurant, is coming to Penn Avenue Downtown, the Trib writes.

🎸 After 19 years, Bloomfield bar/music venue Howler’s is moving to East Liberty, City Paper reports.


🍸 After 15 years of cocktails, dance parties, and #brilloselfies, Bloomfield’s beloved Brillobox is closing.

🥓 Shiloh Grill is leaving its perch atop Mount Washington after 10 years in business and oh-so-many Bacon Nights and frozen cosmos.

🍹 Known for its craft cocktails and no-tipping policy, Mixtape in Garfield has closed. “Our model simply could not be molded to meet the new, challenging landscape of the service industry in a way that we found sustainable or meaningful,” a social media post from the bar stated.

🍚 Ka Mai Chinese Restaurant has closed after 14 years of serving Cantonese food in Squirrel Hill.

🍔 BRGR is closing its East Liberty location, but its food truck will continue running, Good Food Pittsburgh reports.

🥄 After a decade in East Liberty, Spoon announced it’s closed: “Due to the many unprecedented challenges our industry continues to experience and the expiration of our lease, we have decided it is best to close this chapter and look towards the future.”

🥘 Known for its Creole cuisine, NOLA on the Square has closed after about 10 years Downtown, with the owner telling WTAE: “It’s a tough business. It’s tough to survive. And this just makes it more difficult for us.”

🍖 A Penn Hills fixture for two decades, Green Forest Brazilian Restaurant has closed, with the owner telling the Trib that the pandemic couldn’t have come at a worse time.

☕️ Arnold’s Tea on the North Side is closing its physical location but will do online sales and catering.

🍫 Shadyside chocolate shop Eureka! Chocolates + Gifts is closing its storefront and moving the business online.

☕️ After a three-year run in East Allegheny, Kaffeehaus has closed permanently, saying “we don’t feel it’s feasible to re-open in these uncertain times.”

Like this story? Put your logo on it. We’re looking for sponsors for our mega-popular monthly openings-and-closings series. Think your business is the right fit? Let’s talk! Email: benjamin@whereby.us.