Bars in Pittsburgh

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At Bossa Nova, it’s okay to begin a meal with cupcakes. In the baked chicken cupcakes—one of many tapas plates on the menu—mashed potatoes are substituted for frosting, and there’s a garnish of sautéed zucchini. Such innovative recipes are mixed in with a number of classic ones; you can also try fried calamari, spicy tuna tartar wrapped in cucumber, and a bacon, brie, and potato sandwich. These dishes are centered on a communal dining experience, which encourages you to try whatever tapas plate your friend is eating without first pretending to have somehow misplaced your own. In addition to tapas, the kitchen serves up larger entrees such as Spanish chorizo and beef filet.

The restaurant's space is just as eclectic as the cuisine, with a circular bar covered in mosaic tiles acting as the centerpiece. Stop here to order wine and cocktails, and on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, guests head to the dance floor during DJ sets. Chandeliers and vibrant artwork surround the tables spread throughout the dining room, and there are nooks embedded into the walls if you want a more intimate setting.

123 7th St
Pittsburgh,
PA
US

The dessert-inspired martini list at Olive or Twist hosts a range of sweet digestifs including the cake-batter cocktail, the tiramisu martini, the chocolate-covered-pretzel martini with a salted rim, and the key-lime-pie martini. In addition to inventive mixes, Olive or Twist hosts a wide selection of craft beers, ensuring guests find the ideal beverage to compliment upscale American fare from the full kitchen. Its range of appetizers and entrees sate any size of appetite, with options such as truffle fries, housemade crab cakes, and filet mignon with peppercorn sauce. While they dine, patrons can feast eyes on the dark-mocha wood accents that lace the bar and lounge areas at Olive or Twist, offsetting the cream-hued plush seats.

140 6th St
Pittsburgh,
PA
US

The cooks at Harris Grill populate their menu with American classics. They've got a bacon cheeseburger by the name of I Can Has Bacon Cheezburgher and a dish of marinated chicken skewers dubbed Britney Spears. To complement seasonal entrees and keep patrons on their toes, the selection of draft beer rotates often.

5747 Ellsworth Ave.
Pittsburgh,
PA
US

Krista’s Cantina’s menu turns hunger upside down with sauce-slathered wings and amply stuffed hoagies, all whipped up amid a jovial bar vibe. Mirrors vaunting beer insignias steam up as golden fried provolone sticks ($3) and zucchini sticks ($3.75) roll up to tables with zesty sidecars filled with marinara, and a dozen crispy wings ($7.75) can paint a diner's plate in one of more than 20 flavors, ranging from hot barbecue to buttery garlic. The meatball hoagie ($4.50) coats palates with bubbling provolone and marinara and comes with chips and a pickle to help patrons to meet their daily crunch requirements. Burgers range from basic ($2.75) to fancy varieties such as the all-American ($4.50), which, like a pop star about to sing the national anthem, is spoon-fed bacon, fried onions & american cheese.

2650 California Ave
Pittsburgh,
PA
US

Carson City Saloon dishes up plates full of Americana and glasses full of sharable libations within a three-story, four-bar entree emporium. Housed in the building of a late 19th-century bank, the saloon now trades in edible equities, such as the real estate of the reuben, where the dressings of a thousand-islands spread over mountains of corned beef, sauerkraut, and swiss cheese ($8.99). Sink incisors into a house specialty, including the Titan Toothpicks, an entourage of tortillas stuffed with spicy chicken and cheese, deep fried to a golden brown, and served with a dollop of sour cream and barbecue sauce ($8.59). Satisfying every level of the male homo sapiens's food pyramid—made up of protein, protein, and spicy stuff—the Bada-Bing burger amasses a conglomeration of provolone, salami, capicola, fried egg, banana peppers, and italian dressing ($8.99).

1401 E Carson St
Pittsburgh,
PA
US

Lot 17's extensive menu offers a wide variety of decadent bar fare to fill grumbling stomachs. Leap into an order of crunchy chicken nachos ($7), or dive into a seaworthy Mediterranean salad of tomatoes, red peppers, and Kalamata olives, topped with feta, fried calamari, and lump crabmeat ($10). Lot 17 also offers enticing wraps, sandwiches, and entrees, including the salmon BLT, a hoagie-roll-shaped horn of plenty stuffed with grilled salmon, dill mayo, bacon, lettuce, and tomato ($9). As for land-meat eats, the black and blue Cajun-seasoned burger arrives blackened and topped with bacon and bleu cheese ($8.50), while tender baby back ribs make like a surrealist comment on the fluidity of time and melt off the bone into a bed of fries and slaw ($13 for a half rack, $17 for a full rack).

4617 Liberty Ave
Pittsburgh,
PA
US