When Sharon and John Klay discovered winemaking while living in New York City, they also discovered their passion. The only thing was, they didn't have the space to bring it to fruition. Their solution: relocate to western Pennsylvania and purchase the 215-acre Fayette Springs Farm. From there, they cultivated 14,000 vines, transforming them into award-winning wines that range from dry white to robust red.
Now, Christian W. Klay Winery, which bears the name of the Klays' son, welcomes guests to its picturesque spot for wine tastings, summer concert series, and seasonal shindigs. It also rents out its attractive confines for private events, such as weddings or birthday parties for grapes who just turned 21.
Savoy's executive chef, Kevin Watson, a 2013 Pittsburgh magazine?s "Best Restaurants Party" winner and Savor Pittsburgh multiple-award winner, draws from 25 years of culinary experience to put a modern spin on American dishes, from barbecue ribs and burgers to seafood. Chef Watson?s eclectic m?lange of upscale entrees and comfort fare has been featured on Pittsburgh Today, in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and in the recurring dreams of the restaurant?s regulars.
Meanwhile, the space's ritzy d?cor has enticed celebrities that include Boris Kodjoe, Joe Manganiello, Tyson Beckford, Cedric the Entertainer, and Mya. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review marveled: "Pittsburgh designer Luca Paganico transformed an old, three-story building?in the Strip District into a posh, swanky, 74-seat establishment with imported Italian leather couches and chairs, fiber-optic bar tops, walls with lighting that changes color as customers dine, and different music playing in each room and hallway."
Owner and chef Omar Mediouni imbues La Casa Tapas and Wine Bar's menu of traditional Spanish and Moroccan small plates and entrees with local ingredients and an appetite for culinary fusion that, according to Pittsburgh City Paper, "combines sophistication and comfort, authenticity and simplicity." Flagpole-addicted tongues warm up with a choice of 16 hot tapas, including the chorizo catalan's spicy sautéed sausage and spinach in a red-wine reduction ($10), and tomatoes, sweet pepper, and eggplant form the base of a duo of Moroccan dips ($8 each). Larger entrees ($16–$28) sneak garbanzo beans, chicken, lamb, and eggplant into piles of couscous or saffron paella rice like parents tucking Easter eggs into an egg carton.
Nestled within a brick house along a neighborhood street in Shadyside, La Casa Tapas and Wine Bar greets springtime by opening its patio to warm breezes and showers of cupid arrows. Inside, a hanging Spanish guitar, lanterns lit by candles, and the wide grin of a bright red hearth contribute to a cozy, eclectic spirit.
Now in its 12th year, the Pittsburgh Wine Festival gathers more than 165 vendors who pour more than 500 diverse wines inside the Heinz Field East and West Club Lounges. Though many of the featured wines hail from countries such as France, Germany, Portugal, Argentina, and New Zealand, others call California, Pennsylvania, and the Pacific Northwest their home. As attendees wander between sips of reds, whites, and ros?s, they sample food pairings and watch live entertainment.
Winery representatives and winemakers pour their diverse libations during the annual Grand Tasting, but also uncork specialty reserve wines at a VIP tasting. Here, smaller crowds grant visitors more time to speak with the vendors, and ask questions about fermentation or how to determine whether a wine will get along with their other bottles. Outside the main events, industry leaders also hold seminars on how to taste wine like a sommelier or pair wines to specific occasions. Additionally, private wine dinners raise funds for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
Wednesday-Night Wine Flights merge science and education, two ideas that have been divided since a series of high-school chemistry teachers was arrested for dancing on laboratory tables in 1987. Sample three wines that have been hand-selected to complement three Cassis appetizers. Small-plate possibilities from the menu of French-influenced American fare include dumplings, baked brie on toasted baguette slices, and black-olive tapenade with sliced radish dippers. The owner and head chef selects wine and food pairings a week prior to each flight, so if you'd like to know what comestibles are coming, check the Cassis Facebook page on Tuesday evening, or simply call ahead.
Quickly ease your appetite at this laid-back American eatery — North Park Lounge serves sandwiches, salads and more. Low-fat and gluten-free options are featured on the menu as well. The bar is stocked with TVs, so you can watch the next big game. Take the kids along too — North Park Lounge is a great spot for families with food that even little ones will love. On warmer days, you can take advantage of North Park Lounge's al fresco patio seating. Ideal for birthday parties or other large get-togethers, North Park Lounge has all the room you'll need to be comfortable. The restaurant is about as noisy as it gets — plan for booming speakers and chatty crowds everywhere.
The restaurant can fill to capacity on the weekends, so don't forget to call ahead to reserve your table. Show up in sneakers or a suit at North Park Lounge, where dining in comfort is of utmost importance. A catering menu is also available if you're looking to dazzle the patrons at your next shindig. Or, take your food to-go.
Sidle into a space on the street or park your vehicle in the adjacent lot.
Prices are reasonable, with a typical meal running under $30. North Park Lounge accepts all major credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. Head on over to North Park Lounge first thing in the morning or last thing in the evening — North Park Lounge is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.