The Full Bar - all my pages

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Second Chance, Pittsburgh Area...

Last round: here are some bars that I was thinking about putting in PA Breweries 4th edition that, for one reason or another, I didn't put in the manuscript. If you think some of them really deserve to be in, let me know, and tell me why.
Again: if you don't see a bar here, chances are it's already in the book!

Kazansky's Deli, Pittsburgh
Amel's Restaurant, Pittsburgh
The Library, Pittsburgh
Harris Grill, Pittsburgh
Claddagh Irish Pub, Pittsburgh
Hemingway's Cafe, Pittsburgh
Union Grill, Pittsburgh
Apple Inn, Pittsburgh
The Map Room, Swissvale
Bar 1311, Pittsburgh
The Hop House (Noblestown Rd.), Pittsburgh
Club Cafe, Pittsburgh
The Hop House (Babcock Blvd.), Pittsburgh
Bites & Brews, Pittsburgh
Birmingham Bridge Tavern, Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh Deli Company, Pittsburgh
Barley's & Hop's Bottle Shop, Bethel Park
Mr Smalls Funhouse, Millvale
Bado's Pizza Grill And Ale House, Mt. Lebanon
Burgh's Pizza And Wing Pub, Bridgeville

Thanks for all your help. All decisions are mine in the end, of course. I'm going to try to get to as many of the second rounders as I can in the next couple weeks to form my own opinion; that won't be easy in Pittsburgh, but I am a resourceful man...


Mike said...


Two possible candidates:
Harris Grill - 12 taps + decent bottle list. Good food and has been around awhile. Atmosphere: nice outside patio area and service has always been good.

Cons: parking is non-existent

Barley's & Hop's Bottle Shop: 10-12taps + good bottle selection. Atmosphere: comfortable seating and small L-shaped bar. Have never eaten there but service is very good.

Cons: Bottle pricing is pricey

Steve D. said...

Bites & Brews on Ellsworth is nice for a late night pizza and some great beer if you're trying to escape the salsa dancing a couple of doors down.

Harris Grill is also a go to along Ellsworth.

Al Luccioni said...

No Gooski's? They have all kinds of fancy beer and maybe the best juke box in the entire city

Lew Bryson said...

Al: didja read the part in italics? Relax, relax, I've been going to Gooski's for years, been there, done that, got the t-shirt.

Al Luccioni said...

No Lew, I never read anything you put in italics. Good for you though Bryson that is a good bar. How about Sarney's ?

jp said...

I remember correctly Harris's has been there since at least the early 60's when my folks used to frequent. It was run/owned by an old Greek family. There might of been a fire there in the 90s or early oughts that shut it down for a while but that place is has been around.

Al Luccioni said...

From the mighty 3rd edition I would say remove the Bierhaus as I am pretty the brewerania is gone along with that original owner. I would keep the Park House and Max's of course the Cage still gets a vote and why not the Tap Room in the William Penn hotel now that Penn Pilsner is back

Unknown said...

If you do include the 2 Hop Houses, I would make sure to note in the book that are not smoke-free unlike almost all other bars in the county. I refuse to go to the one on Babcock, even though its only a few minutes from my house. I leave there reeking and coughing. If you don't mind the smoking though, they do have great wings.

Bob Batz Jr. said...

I'd buy you a beer at either Barley's & Hop's or Bado's, both of which are deserving of inclusion -- particularly Barley's, which has an import selection without peer, and a great selection overall, including a respectable number of drafts, and a very knowledgeable and affable beer guy in Tim "The Beer Geek" Santoro.
Of course, there are other good places on this list, too -- try to get to Harris Grill on a Bacon Night, and the Deli Co. was an early craft beer adopter here -- so you'd better leave yourself some time.
Bob Batz Jr.

chris said...


As I think you know good food is of utmost importance to me. It think some of the places you listed here have exceptional food experiences along with dedication to craft beer. I am partial to Amel's, since I worked there for 10 years... we had 12 bottles when I started in 1991. They now carry around 70 and we took 5 taps up to 9. The food is not to be missed. They serve a great mix of Syrian classics, Mediterranean inspired seafood dishes, some good American pub fare and always fresh lamb

I also think Bado's has this food thing down with incredibly fresh and delicious pizza. They are featuring better beers, and they aren't trying to carry it all. They had beer there that I had never even had the last time I was there.

The other thing going for these two places is that they are in the landlocked South Hills where not to much else is happening with craft beer.

And yep to Harris Grill, Barley and Hops (is it really two apostrophes?) also both doing food!

Jerry sold the Bierhaus over 4 years ago at least. It is not the same at all. His collection is all private now, unless you catch him at a collectors' show.

Lew Bryson said...

Thanks, Chris. It really is 2 apostrophes; I checked. And sadly, the Bierhaus isn't in the book, or on this list, for just the reasons you and Al mention.

Chris said...


I don't know for far outside of Pittsburgh your willing to go, but 20 miles up the Alleghany River in a town called New Kensington is a bar/bottle shop named "House of a 1000 Beers" Used to be named "6 and save" Last time I was there (Christmans time) there were 30 beers on tap and a ton of bottles. I don't know if they have a website, but their facebook page is!/pages/New-Kensington-PA/6-and-Save/138675981995?ref=sgm

Current list from the notes section of the page

Chouffe Triple IPA | Gouden Carolus Golden Ale | Maredsous | Triple Karmeliet | Val Dieu Grand Cru | Saint Bernardus Abt 12 | Kasteel Triple | Kasteel Rouge | Ommegang Abbey | Hacker Pschorr Weisse | Piraat | Kilty Scotch Ale | 21st Amendment IPA | Cordendonk Pale Ale | Bass Ale | Joe Coffee Porter | Bull Frog Double Coffee Stout | Dave's Belgian Triple | Voo Doo Vator | Yuengling | Flying Dog Porter | Spaten Dunkel | Old Rasputin Stout | Ayinger Weisse | Dog Fish 90 Minute | Old Engine Oil | Brooklyn Back Braker | Amstel Light | Left Hand Milk Stout | 21 Amendment Golden Doom

Unknown said...

Harris Grill should be included, good beers, food, and bacon night.

Barley and Hops is growing and filling a needed void in the south hills.

Looking forward to the new book.

Jerry said...

I'll put in a good word for Kazansky's, which is trying hard to sell craft beer. They have a half-dozen taps, a cooler with a good selection, and tastings roughly once a month.

Claddagh feels like part of a chain; I can't imagine a situation where I wouldn't rather cross the street and go to Hofbrauhaus.

When Harris Grill reopened after their fire a couple years ago, former Rock Bottom brewer Matt Carroll was working behind the bar. I don't know if he still is.

Jerry said...

Also, the Map Room has been a strong supporter of East End Brewing (and a good backup if D's is too crowded next door).