Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Porch - Oakland

I had a chance to get out to Eat N Park Hospitality Group's new concept restaurant The Porch at Schenley in Oakland. Located in Schenley Plaza, The Porch is virtually in the heart of the University of Pittsburgh campus. A lot of thought went into The Porch's architectural and interior design, especially given its prominent spot on Forbes Avenue, directly across from the Cathedral of Learning and Heinz Chapel on the Pitt campus. It is a wide open building, with the kitchen visible from the bar and the bar visible from the whole of the dining room. It features floor to ceiling windows surrounded by flat, rustic stones. There is an abundance of outdoor seating as well. The building is apparently certified as LEED Silver.

The menu is simple and tasty -- comfort food with oomph. I had the rib eye steak (about $19) with fried and roasted potatoes and found it exemplary: though not super thick, the meat was incredibly flavorful and cooked just right (medium rare in my case). They also offer duck and pork main course items that looked quite tasty. The Porch has a long list of "This and That," which are there version of small plates. I did not have a chance to try them, but a number of them looked good -- cornbread in a skillet or shrimp and grits.

The Porch also specializes in a variety of pizzas, which are reportedly very flavorful with an excellent crust.

Here is the Porch's dinner menu.

Service was very good. We arrived late (after a terrible banquet meal at a different Oakland establishment), and they were happy to receive us.

The Porch is an exceptional addition to the Pittsburgh dining scene -- it's a beautiful space with simple, well executed foods

For Pittsburgh Magazine's view on the restaurant, click here.

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