Luke Wholey knows seafood. The fourth-generation commercial fisherman spent his early career scooping up salmon aboard an Alaskan trawler and guiding anglers along Montana’s fish-rich rivers and lakes. Now, however, he puts his knowledge to good use at his eponymous seafood restaurant, Luke Wholey’s Wild Alaskan Grille.
The Grille, located at the same address where Luke’s great-grandfather once sold his fresh catch at market, dishes out crisp, breaded Alaskan halibut, broiled Atlantic cod, and whole steamed Maine lobster. These pair with an extensive selection of beers from Dogfish Head and other craft breweries, as well as A. Ward’s Cheesecakes, which are never frozen, except during the games of freeze tag they play with the root-beer floats.
As executive chef, Luke also has ample opportunity to flex his culinary muscles: he was picked by the governor to be Pennsylvania’s representative to the Great American Seafood Cook-off in 2012.
Although ten finalists made it to Pittsburgh's Best Ribs competition, Roxanne's Take-Out & Catering drew top praise for its "Honey-A-Must" sauce, according to event sponsor WPXI.com. When the judges tore into Roxanne's honey-mustard ribs, the room went silent—save for the sound of vigorous chewing and one pronouncement that "this sauce is great." The highly celebrated sauce represents just one of Roxanne Easley's mouthwatering dishes, which she prepares daily.
Easley's accomplishments are not limited to her cooking, however. In February 2012, she named Pittsburgh Courier's list of "Fab 40" honorees for being an elite member of the African-American business community in Pittsburgh. Roxanne also showed Pittsburgh her cooking skills as she performed a live cooking-demonstration of her famous balsamic lamb chops and peach cake on TV program Pittsburgh's Today Live. As a chef and business owner, Easley has catered events with up to 500 people, preparing an array of dishes such as mexican lasagna and parmesan crusted tilapia, as well as customized dishes tailored to the event.
The cooks at Misaki Sushi and Seafood Buffet pair a menu of Pan-Asian entrees and sushi with an expansive buffet that blends Asian cuisine with Western favorites. They frequently replenish the buffet with fresh sushi, wood-oven pizzas, and pastas, artfully arranging the dishes beneath spotlights. They prepare à la carte options with equal care, whether curling tuna slices into maki rolls or frying flat rice noodles for pad thai or delicious shoelaces.
Katana’s chefs draw inspiration from Thai, Chinese, and Japanese culinary traditions, creating faithful renditions of iconic dishes from each culture. Teppanyaki chefs thrill diners by searing cuts of lobster or filet mignon amid the towering flames of hibachi grills that adorn the tabletops of select seating areas. In contrast, sushi chefs studiously avoid open flames as they roll more than 15 kinds of specialty maki, which can include smoked salmon, mango, or piquant chili sauce within a cylinder of individually peeled grains of rice. The rest of the menu spotlights the seemingly disparate flavors of Thailand and China, listing aromatic curries along with meat-laden orders of lo mein or fried rice.
Red Tea House peppers palates with an amalgam of Asian flavors with a menu of Chinese specialties and freshly bundled sushi options. While skilled maki chefs manipulate scallops, salmon, and yellowtail into intricate rolls, diners wrap their own morsels of classic peking duck and mu-shu pork in delicate, steaming crepes. Seven days a week, patrons can stop in for a dumpling appetizer, or savor Asian fare at home with complimentary delivery in order to effectively discipline a misbehaving wok.
Both chefs at Sichuan Gourmet hail from Chendu, the capital of China's Sichuan province. They both tap into nearly 20 years of experience to populate their menu with Sichuan-style recipes such as tea-smoked duck and the Triple Fairy, a medley of shrimp, sea scallops, chicken, and veggies stir-fried in a spicy sauce. These authentic dishes are served in a dining room that's cloaked in warm hues, including orange booths, yellow and peach walls, and prints of autumnal foliage.