Good Company, Good Food & Good Drinks at Bar Marco

Menu Bar Marco
Friday, June 19th’s Bar Dinner Menu at Bar Marco

*DISCLAIMER*: I do not seek monetary benefits from neither Bar Marco, nor any of these Pittsburgh Bloggers. I’m just a Pittsburgh Foodie, who enjoys sharing her Foodie adventures! Pictures were taken with an iPhone 5s, and were edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended.

Last Friday, I had the WONDERFUL honor of dining with Tasha (of The Food Tasters), Terri (Parmesan Princess), Alberto (PR/Events Manager of Gaucho), Robert (Downtown Pittsburgh Concierge), Nadine (Pittsburgh Mommy Blog) and Michael Pellas and Jessica Fink (husband/wife team behind the Why We Live in Downtown Pittsburgh blog)!

We decided to meet for dinner and drinks at Bar Marco, located in Pittsburgh’s Strip District neighborhood. I had been there one time for brunch, but never for dinner. I was looking forward to spending a fabulous evening with good friends and good food!

*TIP*: every evening from 5-6pm, Bar Marco does a “Happy Hour”, where you can order all Bar Menu food and drinks at half price! The Pittsburgh Bloggers and I DEFINITELY utilized this strategy for our meet-up!

Menu Bar Marco
Close up of the Bar Menu at Bar Marco!
Bar Marco's Dessert Menu
Bar Marco’s Dessert Menu

The dessert menu looked REALLY good! Next time, I will have to get the chocolate and coffee flourless cake!

Drink Bar Marco
My first drink of the night at Bar Marco! This drink contained: sparkling wine, lemon and lavender!

This was DELICIOUS! The waitress brought an extra one of Terri’s drinks, and was kind enough to give it to me. 😛

The Food Tasters' Signature Cocktail
The Food Tasters’ signature drink of the night, which contained: orange liquer, lemons. ginger, and other ingredients that I do not remember lol. X)

The Food Tasters’ donated generously to Bar Marco’s Food Revolution Club in 2014. Thus, for the night, Bar Marco crafted a drink in her honor! This was INCREDIBLE! 😀

Shrimp Empanada from Bar Marco
Shrimp Empanada = HEAVEN

Alberto and I both shared shrimp empanadas, sitting on a bed of cilantro cream. Soooooooooo scrumptious! Loved this dish; heaven on a plate!

Confit Chicken Bar Marco
My main course: Confit Chicken, with rice grits, black beans and corn, and plantain. Best dish of the night!

Here’s my main dish: confit chicken! Let met tell you: one of the best chicken dishes I’ve EVER had in my entire LIFE! Also, one of the best dinners of my life! I also enjoyed the rice grits, black beans and corn, and plantain (my first time trying plantain)!

The main aspects of these dishes that I really appreciated: I experience a glimpse into the Executive Chef’s (Jamilka Borges) upbringing and cuisine! She’s originally from Puerto Rico; thus, I really felt that I was tasting the dishes that her grandparents and parents made for her, the recipes conducted from Jamilka’s childhood memories. What a delight!

Whether you visit Bar Marco for brunch, dinner, the wine room experience, or just a few drinks, you will NOT be disappointed! There’s a reason why big foodie sites (such as Eater.com) have featured this revolutionary restaurant!

Speaking of revolution: Bar Marco no longer accepts gratuity, since all of its staff is now full time & salaried, with health care and paid vacations. In my opinion, every restaurant around the world should follow in Bar Marco’s footsteps; happy employees equals a happy restaurant!

Also: if you do leave any extra money on the table, all of the proceeds go towards Bar Marco’s Pittsburgh Food Revolution Club, which teaches children in East Liberty about farming, growing and cooking food. Make sure to leave some money behind for this AMAZING food club!

In short: Bar Marco, I love you!

Three Cheers to good food, fabulous art and cultural events,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Bar Marco’s website

Bar Marco’s Facebook page

Bar Marco’s Twitter page

Bar Marco’s Instagram page

The Food Tasters’s Twitter page

Parmesan Princess’ Twitter page

Downtown Pittsburgh Concierge’s Twitter page

Alberto from Gaucho’s Twitter page

Michael Pellas’s Twitter page

Jessica Fink’s Twitter page

Nadine’s Twitter page

Brunch at Grit and Grace

Rhubarb Scrub
Rhubarb Scrub (Rhubarb, preserved in vinegar with Seltzer Water) at Grit & Grace!

*DISCLAIMER*: I do no seek monetary benefits from neither Brian Pekarchik, S+P Restaurant Group, nor Grit and Grace. I am just a humble Pittsburgh Foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures. Photos captured with an iPhone 5s, and edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended.

Last Sunday, my Mom and I FINALLY had the opportunity to brunch at Grit & Grace! I’ve been looking forward to this, even since Grit & Grace started its brunch service towards the end of April. My Mom and I were in two to see a matinee showing of Buyer & Cellar at the Pittsburgh Public Theater- what a great excuse to go to brunch, right?

Steamed Bun from Grit & Grace
Grit & Grace’s legendary steamed bun: mortadella, cheddar cheese, kimchi and a fried egg, on a steamed bun. PERFECTION in sandwich form!

Let me tell you- this was the highlight of brunch! Think of the steamed bun as an Asian Fusion version of the breakfast sandwich! I wish I would’ve know how big this was- otherwise, I would’ve just ordered this dish. Any who: between the savory-ness of the kimchi and cheddar, to the protein from the fried egg and mortadella, to the soft texture of the steamed bun, this dish was meticulously crafted, in every way.

Buttermilk & Ricotta Pancake
Buttermilk and Ricotta Pancake at Grit & Grace!

The piece de resistance: buttermilk and ricotta pancake, with rhubarb maple syrup! Once again, one of the best pancakes I’ve EVER had (Verde & Marty’s Market are tied for best, but this pancake comes pretty close)! The sweetness of the ricotta and buttermilk, paired with the savory-ness of the rhubarb maple syrup, and the crunch of the nuts sprinkled on top, REALLY sings a wonderful harmony on my plate (and to my taste buds lol).

Well, there you have it, folks! If you have a free Sunday, I recommend brunching at Grit & Grace! Make sure to book a table via Open Table, because the brunch REALLY packs customers into the restaurant!

Three Cheers for good food, fabulous art, and cultural events!

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Grit & Grace’s website

Grit & Grace’s Facebook page

Grit & Grace’s Twitter page

My first visit to Salud Juicery in Sewickley

Salud Juicery
Two women chatting towards the front of the Salud Juicery (original Sewickley locating) store front!

*DISCLAIMER*: I do not see monetary benefits from Salud Juicery. I am just a Pittsburgh foodie, who enjoys to share her foodie adventures. Photos were captures on my iPhone 5s, and edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended.

I had heard so many good things about Salud Juicery, I figured it was time to try it. What better opportunity to visit when my Mom and I were already in Sewickley shopping? Also, I was curious to see how Salud Juciery compares to Amazing Cafe in the South Side.

Salud Juicery in Sewickley
Behind the counter at Salud Juicery in Sewickley
Salud Juicery's menu
First half of Salud Juicery’s menu!
Salud Juicery Sewickley
Second half of the menu at Salud Juicery in Sewickley!

Salad’s menu is not quiet as extensive as Amazing Cafe, but still impressive! Juices. Smoothies, cleanses, bowls, coffee, tea, and other assorted beverages.

Racer's Edge Smoothie
My Smoothie of Choice: Racers Edge

I chose the Racers Edge smoothie, which contains: banana, cacao, peanuts, oats and nutmeg. This was VERY good! I sipped this all throughout the Sewickley adventure (and lunch)! This smoothie provided me with the energy to zip through the day!

Salud Juicery also has a Shadyside locating (on Copeland street, very close to Amazing Yoga); I’m excited to visit that location as well sometime soon! I think I will have to order a juice, and perhaps I will buy a cleanse kit as well. 🙂

Three Cheers to good food, fabulous art and cultural events,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Salud Juicery’s website

Salud Juicery’s Facebook page

Salud Juciery’s Instagram page

Grand Opening Party and First Lunch at Cocothe!

Watermelon & Feta
One of the small bites from the Grand Opening Party: watermelon with feta, mixed greens and a balsamic vinaigrette!
*DISCLAIMER*: I do not seek monetary benefits from Cocothe. I am just a Pittsburgh blogger, who enjoys sharing her Foodie adventures. Photos were captures with my iPhone 5s, and were edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended.

I was kindly invited by a local magazine called Maniac (they focus on: fashion, food, travel and events), to attend a Grand Opening Party for this cute little cafe in Sewickley called Cocothe! They started off as a chocolaterie and bakery, but have recently hired a Chef from San Francisco, and have expanded with a Sunday Brunch, lunch and dinner menu!

Pictured above is one of the “small bites” from the opening party: watermelon, on top of feta and mixed greens, with a balsamic viniagrette drizzle! This was my favorite dish of the night; so tasty, refreshing and HEALTHY!

Free Champagne? Why yes; I think I'd like that! ;-)
Free Champagne? Why yes; I think I’d like that! 😉
Chocolate Truffle Ball
Chocolate Truffle Ball, covered in coco at Cocothe! 😀
This was sooooooooooooooo good! Oh, how I love chocolate!

Ribbing Cutting Cocothe
Executive Chef Elizabeth (left), & Owner & Pastry Chef Courtney (right) at Cocothe’s ribbon cutting!
Grand Opening party at Cocothe
Everyone from the Grand Opening Party, mingling!
Chocolate
Of course, Cocothe sells LOTS of chocolate!
Tea
Cocothe also sells tea (cool, huh)?
Loose-leaf tea
More tea (loose-leaf) at Cocothe!
Tea pot and tea set
Coo teapot (and tea set) at Cocothe!
Lunch menu at Cocothe
Lunch menu, part one!
Lunch menu at Cocothe
Lunch menu, part two!
Ever since the Grand Opening Party, my Mom and I have discussed visiting Cocothe for lunch; two weeks ago, we FINALLY received our opportunity!

My Mom and I conversed quiet a bit with the Executive Chef (Elizabeth), who not only was the Chef, but also waitress and cashier. She just moved here from San Francisco, and was ready to bring her California Culinary palette to Sewickley!

Ice Pomegranate tea and a Salted Caramel Cookie
Ice Pomegranate tea with a Salted Caramel Chocolate cookie! Sooooo good!
Who says your can’t have dessert first! It was such a hot day; thus, the Iced Pomegranate tea was the perfect way to cool off from our walk around Sewickley! The Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie was the perfect pre-cursor to lunch; so decadent!

Tea and cookie
Another glamor shot of the tea and cookie!
Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie
Close up of the GLORIOUS Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie!
Salad
Mom’s lunch- the “Lex and Lynn” salad!
My Mom’s lunch: the Lex and Lynn salad! I tried a bite, this was sooooo good! Mixed greens, squash, beets and feta cheese.

Salad close-up
Close-up of my Mom’s salad
Bella Donna sandwich and side salad
My lunch: the “Bella Donna” sandwich: burrata cheese, tomato and basil on focaccia bread, with a mixed green salad and a simple vinaigrette!
This was INCREDIBLE! The sandwich was so light (perfect for spring), and scrumptious, but the highlight for me was this side salad! No fuss- just mixed greens and a house vinaigrette, but I LOVED it! The mixed greens were nice and fresh, and the house vinaigrette was IN-CRE-DI-BLE!

Bella Donna Sandwich
Close up of my lovely lunch
There you have it, folks! Whether you live near Sewickley or not, it’s DEFINITELY worth the drive on Route 65 to Cocothe Chocolaterie and Cafe!

Upcoming posts:

My first visit to Salud Juicery

Brunch at Grit & Grace

Third, Fourth and Fifth visits to Sirena Taco Joint & Bar

Dinner at Bar Marco 

Dinner at The Commoner

Three cheers to good food, fabulous art, and cultural events!

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Cocothe’s website

Cocothe’s Facebook page

Cocothe’s Twitter page

Cocothe’s Instagram page

Review of eatPGH & Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Urban Supper Picnic

Brisket
Wagyu beef brisket, collard greens, kimchi and Korean BBQ sauce from Chef Richard DeShantz (of Meat & Potatoes, Butcher & The Rye and Tako).

*DISCLAIMER*: I do not seek monetary benefits from neither the eatPGH ladies, Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, Michael Pellas, nor any of the chefs involved in the Urban Supper Picnic. I am just a Pittsburgh Foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures. Pictures captured on an iPhone 5s, and edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended.

Pittsburgh Foodies: I wrote a review of eatPGH & Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership‘s Urban Supper Picnic, on the Why We Live in Downtown Pittsburgh‘s blog (run by my two good friends Michael Pellas and Jessica Fink). Here is the link to my review: http://www.downtownpittsburghlife.com/review-of-urban-supper-picnic/.

Three cheers to good food, fabulous art, and cultural events!

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

eatPGH’s website

eatPGH’s Facebook page

eatPGH’s Twitter page

eatPGH’s Instagram page

Why We Live in Downtown Pittsburgh’s website

Michael Pellas’ Twitter page

Jessica Fink’s Twitter page

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s website

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Facebook page

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Twitter page

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Instagram page