February Menu Updates at Pittsburgh Restaurants

February is a wonderful month for menu updates at Pittsburgh restaurants. Not only is it Lent season for many, but it’s also still prime time for winter vegetables and other seasonal staples. As you head out on your culinary journey you’ll find fried fish sandwiches, inventive cold-weather pastas, and plenty of other delicious recipes. A gentle warning: these specials won’t last long, so head out to these restaurants before the end of the month to make sure you get a bite of something delicious and new.  

A fish sandwich on a bun with lettuce, tomato, and sauce along with a side of fries sitting in front of it seasoned with pepper.
Photo courtesy of Brick Shop

Brick Shop 


Come get your Lenten fish sandwich from Brick Shop every Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. This decadent, beer battered and deep fried cod filet is piled with lettuce, tomato, and housemade tartar sauce on a Mancini hoagie roll and served with a side of fries. Make sure you try their organic wine and specialty crafted cocktails while you’re there.


A variety of plates featuring pastas, steak, salads, and other recipes sits on a wooden table with wine glasses dispersed in between the white plates.
Photo courtesy of Alta Via

Alta Via

Fox Chapel, Downtown

Who’s ready for some excellent, Italian home cooking? For all you pasta lovers, Alta Via has an endless selection of dishes to choose from. You can go classic with their Fettuccine featuring Vermont creamery cultured butter, parmigiano reggiano, and aleppo pepper for a creamy delight. Or, choose to try something a little different with their Mafaldini finished with mushroom bolognese, fresh ricotta, and rosemary…or Orecchiette alongside grilled chicken, broccoli, oven-roasted tomato, taleggio, and crispy garlic. If you’re not in the mood for pasta you can order Salmon or Steak Fiorentina for a juicy, savory blend of flavors and textures.


A glass of yellow liquid with a spoon on top full of yellow caviar.
Photo courtesy of The Commoner

The Commoner


It may be Lent but you can still enjoy a meal out on the town.  Chef Dave Racicot has two Lent-inspired dishes ready for anyone looking to get a taste of seafood. Take a bite of mild, flaky Fried Branzino with vanilla pickled fennel, tartar sauce, and grilled lemon. Another dish is the housemade Cavatelli featuring crab, lemon, parmesan, and arugula for the perfect seafood pasta. As the restaurant transitions to spring, you’ll also find new cocktails and mocktails like the Bee, Of Course, Flies Anyways, which is made with Bombay Sapphire, yellow chartreuse, chamomile, orange blossom, and is topped with house-made honey caviar. 


A variety of dishes sit on a wooden table holding slices of pizzas, brownies, cannoli's and trays holding whole square and round cut pizzas. Drinking glasses and candles are also dispersed throughout.
Photo courtesy of Alta Via Pizzeria

Alta Via Pizzeria

East Liberty

Yes, spring has begun to flirt with us. But because we all know that we are still in for a few more weeks of winter, Alta Via Pizzeria is embracing the cold weather. Their Winter Veggie square-cut pizza uses their signature sauce topped with fresh mozzarella, delicata squash, kale, cherries, and goat cheese. If you’re looking for something to put a little meat on your bones, try the Capicola Round-Cut Pie with roasted tomato sauce, cheese blend, Calabrian chili, toasted fennel seed, and of course, plenty of capicola. Craving something a little lighter than pizza? Alta Via Pizzeria also serves a Burrata with grilled piadina, prosciutto, delicata squash, arugula, hazelnuts, and cherries.


A white plate holds Salmon Ceviche with elegant crisps that look like fans decorating the top all in front of a window showing the Pittsburgh skyline.
Photo courtesy of Altius


Mt. Washington

Why not shake things up with a perfectly prepared salmon rather than fried fish? Altius is featuring their Ōra King Salmon in two different ways. Start with their Ōra King Salmon Ceviche appetizer that uses a sweet chili pineapple glaze, cilantro creme fraiche, red cabbage kimchi, smoked salmon roe, and pineapple chips to garnish. Then dig into a dinner of Ōra King Salmon alongside a lemon horseradish hollandaise, fresh herb citrus risotto, and brown butter hazelnut sunchokes. 


A variety of Cuban inspired dishes such as salads, cuban sandwiches, a burger, and a salsa sit on white and blue plates on a wooden table at Kaya restaurant in Pittsburgh.
Photo courtesy of Kaya


Strip District

It may be cold outside but you can stop by Kaya for a tropical feast that will transport you into summer. Begin with Pineapple Mango Tomatillo Salsa served with their housemade tortilla chips or a Rainbow Salad of fresh vegetables and fruits. Then for your main course, try out their selection of Cubans. Go for the Original or try the Veggie Cuban made with baked tofu, swiss cheese, mayo, yellow mustard, pickles, and chipotle aioli. You also can’t leave Kaya without trying their famous Kaya Burger. Topped with pickles, avocado, bacon, tomato, Chihuahua cheese, a sunny-side egg, Kaya sauce, and served alongside either waffle fries, sweet potato fries, Kaya chips, spicy slaw, Kaya salad, vegetarian soup, or chowder.


A salad with tomatoes and drenched in dressing sits on a white plate which is on top of a red, Syrian patterned table cloth.
Photo courtesy of Khalil’s


East Liberty

Aside from Kahlil’s traditional Syrian fare, you can try their new menu of Lenten specials every Friday. For lunch, try the Aleppo Red Pepper Fried Fish Sandwich paired with Za’atar Steak Fries and topped with coleslaw, sumac onions, shatta hot sauce, and tartar sauce. Or stop in for a dinner of Sautéed Shrimp finished in a lemon garlic sauce along with Khalil’s Signature Buttered Rice with orzo and topped with toasted pignoli nuts and almonds. You can add a salad featuring handcrafted Sito’s Mediterranean Salad Dressing and Marinade for the perfect spread.

A dish filled with mussels, broccolini, peppers, and more sits on a dark wood table with a crusted baguette and gold spoon to the right.
Photo by Dave Bryce for TABLE Magazine

Eighty Acres


Seafood is one of the specialties of Eighty Acres and the restaurant is always keeping things fresh with their many styles of mussels. For winter, they offer their P.E.I Mussels starter. This dish starts with fresh mussels simmered in tomato broth alongside chorizo, broccolini, roasted tomatoes. It is served with pickled fennel and grilled ciabatta for a great convergence of winter flavors all in one, soul-warming dish. 


Chicken Romesco sandwich on a ciabatta bun with a side salad featuring cranberries and feta.
Photo courtesy of Over Eden

Over Eden


While fish is all the rave right now because of Lent, you won’t want to miss your chance to taste Over Eden’s Chick Romesco Sandwich. This sandwich starts with fresh grilled chicken breast that’s topped with a pesto garlic butter, mixed greens, mozzarella cheese, and romesco sauce all on a toasted ciabatta bun. It’s also served with a side salad featuring pickled red onion, pecans, feta, and raspberry vinaigrette. Complete your spread with a Kiwi Mule or a Blueberry Mojito Mocktail. They’re $2 off regular price on Fridays and Saturdays.

A small white plate holds a shrimp pasta with another darker plate blurred in the background and two red drinks to the right of the dishes.
Photo courtesy of Ritual House

Ritual House


Catch the Lenten seafood specials from Ritual House all season long, not just on Fridays. Gather some friends for a lunch of Chef Ed’s Fried Fish Sandwich or Crab Cake Sandwich complete with a house-made remoulade. You can also order Crab Fritters to share around the table. Heading out for dinner? Try the Shrimp and Scallops with mashed potatoes and capers or their exquisite with their Swordfish special. 

Story by Kylie Thomas

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