My “Last Hurrah” dinner at Crested Duck Charcuterie

Cduck04.JPGClose-up to part of my dinner: root vegetables, toasted brioche bread, and bacon jam from Crested Duck Charcuterie!

*NOTE*: Neither Chef and Owner Kevin Costa, nor Crested Duck Charcuterie asked me to write this review. I am just a humble Pittsburgh Foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures with others. Photos captures with an iPhone 5s, and edited in Instagram and Adobe Photoshop Extended CS4.

If you have not read my previous blog post on Crested Duck Charcuterie, I encourage you to do so: first review of the Crested Duck.

As many a dedicated Pittsburgh Foodie knows, Kevin Costa‘s Crested Duck will be closing on Friday, January 1st, 2016 forever. I am so sad to see this shining beacon of hope in the Pittsburgh Restaurant world close, but never fear Pittsburgh Foodies; Kevin has a few more opportunities in store for us!

Next year (crazy that it’s just one day away, right?), Chef Costa will become the Chef Du Cuisine of Keith Fuller‘s Root 174 restaurant, located in Regent Square! Thus, the closing of the Crested Duck is certainly not the end of Kevin Costa’s culinary career. In fact, the Crested Duck was just the beginning of the journey for him.

Refocusing to December: on Thursday, December 17th, my Mom and I visited the Crested Duck for a “one last hurrah” dinner, before they closed. Here’s what I chose for my final dinner at the Duck:


Course #1: Picked Vegetable plate

I REALLY enjoyed this healthy first course, particularly the tiny pickles, olives and cauliflower, but all of the vegetables were good!


Course #2 (main course): Duck Liver Mousse, with toasted brioche, root vegetables, duck breast and bacon jam

This course was HEAVENLY! πŸ˜€ I really enjoyed spreading the duck liver mousse on the toast, and adding the bacon jam on top (talk about decadence)! I also really enjoyed the slices of duck meat on the plate, as well as the carrot! I’ve never tried a soft carrot before, but I loved this fresh take on the vegetable (thanks Kevin)!


Another AMAZING angle of my main course at Crested Duck!


Course #3: S’mores! Homemade graham cracker. mascarpone cheese and chocolate ganache

Those of you who know me, it’s very rare for me to pass up on dessert when dining at a fine Pittsburgh Restaurant. Especially since this would be my last time dining at the Crested Duck, I indulged. πŸ˜‰

The homemade graham crackers were THE best graham crackers I’ve ever tasted! What a HUGE difference, compared to the store bought ones that come in a box. Pair that with mascarpone cheese (which I love dearly), and perfectly-made chocolate ganache (I mean, who doesn’t love chocolate?), and you have a winning dessert combination! πŸ˜€


Here’s another view of this lovely dessert!

Pittsburgh Foodies: please make sure to visit Root 174, and say hi to Kevin!


Cheers to Food and Fitness,


-Friendly Fitness Foodie


Crested Duck’s website

Crested Duck’s Facebook page

Crested Duck’s Twitter page

Kevin Costa’s Twitter page

Keith Fuller/Root 174’s Twitter page


Birthday Dinner #2: Dinner at Crested Duck

Crested Duck Charcuterie in Pittsburgh
Crested Duck Charcuterie’s lovely dining room

*DISCLAIMER* I do not seek monetary benefits from neither Kevin Costa nor Crested Duck Charcuterie. I’m just a Pittsburgh foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures. Images were captured on an iPhone 5s and edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4.

*Website and social media links below this post!*

Why have one birthday dinner when you can have two? πŸ™‚ Birthday dinner #2 was held at Crested Duck Charcuterie in the Beechview neighborhood of Pittsburgh on Friday, November 7th. My Mom and I were the first guests to arrive for the evening at the restaurant. I really loved the waiter’s description of the evening: “Chef Kevin Costa will be your personal chef for the evening, preparing each and every one of your dishes”! Talk about a luxury experience!

Speaking of Chef Costa, I’ve heard a lot of good things about him. I had the opportunity to listen to him speak with Chef Bill Fuller (of the Big Burrito Group) and the eatPGH ladies last year at a foodie event. Kevin taught himself how to butcher animals by watching YouTube videos (hunters teaching how to butcher deer) and from readingΒ old animal butchering books. Costa noticed that there was a need for locally cured meats in Pittsburgh, and Kevin took it upon himself to meet that need.

Bull Painting
Painting in Crested Duck, honoring a noble animal

I loved the restaurant right from the start- from this INCREDIBLE painting, to the maroon colors of the walls to the music playing in the background and a very knowledgeable waiter.

Charcuterie Plate
BIG charcuterie plate at Crested Duck

My first dish of the evening: the BIG charcuterie plate. Some of the meats featured on this plate: duck speck, lomo, cannonball salami, lamb coppa and turkish salami. I am so GLAD that I ordered the big plate; I am really close to finishing this baby single-handedly! The charcuterie was incredible- some of the best I’ve ever had! I LOVED the grain mustard and small pickles, too (and there was plenty of break to help consume the charcuterie). Ladies and gentlemen, this plate is “the stuff that dreams are made of”! πŸ™‚

Charcuterie Plate close-up
Charcuterie plate close-up #1
Charcuterie Plate Close-up
Charcuterie Plate Close-up #2
Cheese Plate
The Cheese plate at the Crested Duck

As Boromir would say: “one cannot simple order the BIG charcuterie plate without ordering the cheese plate”! So, I ordered the cheese plate as my accompanying dish. πŸ™‚ I enjoyed all of the cheese, but I particularly LOVED the cheese in the bottom right corner of the photo. I also LOVED the dark jam that was served with the cheese. Cheese heaven right here! I was one happy diner!

Beignets with caramel sauce and apple butter from Crested Duck

I’d like to think all of you know me well enough by now to know that 99% of the time, I always order dessert. ❀ I chose the beignets with apple butter and caramel sauce. These were SPECTACULAR! They came pretty close to being as good as the beignets I had at Bouchon Bistro in Las Vegas. The apple butter and the caramel sauce were both EXCELLENT additions to this delectable dessert!

If you’re looking for a special dining experience in Pittsburgh, with a passionate chef at the forefront (who loves good quality ingredients), I highly recommend Crested Duck in Beechview! You will HAVE to get one of the two charcuterie plates (after all, charcuterie is what they’re know for at the Crested Duck) and the cheese plate (Kevin gets his cheeses from local farmers and cheese producers), and of course, DESSERT! πŸ™‚

Three cheers to good food, fabulous art & cultural events,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Crested Duck’s website

Crested Duck’s Facebook page

Crested Duck’s Twitter page